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Secretary Rumsfeld Stakeout after House Armed Services Committee Testimony

Presenter: Secretary of Defense Donald H. Rumsfeld
February 04, 2004
Secretary Rumsfeld Stakeout after House Armed Services Committee Testimony

            Chairman Hunter:  We had a good double session with the Secretary.  The Senate borrowed our quarters today, and Senator Warner ran a full hearing with the Secretary and General Pace.  We had similarly a good hearing.  We unveiled the, and answered many questions about the defense budget.   We think it is a good balance between the exigencies of the operations in Afghanistan and Iraq and of course the long-term requirements of U.S. military.  The Secretary did double duty today good double-header, and we would be happy to take a couple of questions

 

            Q:  Mr. Secretary I wanted to ask you about Pakistan and nuclear capabilities.  The founder of Pakistan Nuclear program has admitted that he sold nuclear technology.  Why would he do this?  And could he do this without the knowledge of the government and the Army.

 

            Rumsfeld:  There are any number of public reports on that subject.  They are of, first of all, no one I know has ground truth on precisely what happened over what period of time.  I know that our intelligence community has a good deal of good information on this subject, which I’m not at liberty to discuss.  My impression is that the government of Pakistan has approached this serious problem in a very responsible and orderly way.  And I impressed with the way President Musharraf has address it thus far.

 

            Q:  Are you very concerned about this?

 

            Rumsfeld:  Any one, any citizen has to be concerned when one reads about the existence of a what appears to be a private network that has proliferated nuclear technology to a variety of companies – allegedly.

 

            Q:  Mr. Secretary a year ago the (inaudible) in the war in Iraq, in the region.  If you new then what you know now repeating what Mr. Kay said about the absence of weapons of mass destruction do you think the American would have gone ahead in March?

 

            Rumsfeld:  First of all, I think it is important not to misrepresent what Dr. Kay has said.  Dr. Kay has said a great many things.  He has not filed an official written report it has been a oral report.  He had indicated that he feels they are about 85 percent complete.  General Dayton has the responsibility for running Iraq survey group.  And Dr. Duelfer is going to be taking his place, though I have not met him yet.  He, as well as Dr Kay both have excellent reputations and certainly General Dayton is doing a very good job.  There is work yet to be done.   So I think that a question that’s premised upon that assumption nothing has been found, which is not true, (inaudible) but nothing will be found would be a mistake.  The answer to your question is yes there is no doubt in my mind the President made the right decision.  Congress made the right decision in supporting it and the United Nation Resolution is correct.  That a fraudulent declaration was filed.  Saddam Hussein clearly was in violation of some 17 U.N. resolutions.  He had tortured and killed tens of thousands of his own people and used chemical weapons against his own people, the Kurds and also against his neighbors.  And the world is a far safer place with him gone.

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