"A recent press report alleging some disagreement between the Joint Chiefs of Staff and other members of the President's national security team is false in both tone and substance.
"Whenever military action is contemplated, the President and political leadership provide the military with the overall objectives and broad guidance.
From this guidance, the warfighting commander and Joint Staff prepare military plans and options to be reviewed by the Joint Chiefs.
These options and a military recommendation are then presented to the Secretary of Defense and the President by the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.
"This is precisely what has occurred in recent months as we examined military options in support of UN resolutions in the event our diplomatic efforts fail to achieve Iraqi compliance.
At every step in this process, my advice, based on my discussions with the Joint Chiefs and the warfighting commanders, has been actively sought and considered by both Secretary Cohen and the President.
Any suggestion to the contrary is wrong."