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XXXXX DRUDGE REPORT XXXXX WED JAN 15, 2004 11:28:25 ET XXXXX
WES CLARK MADE CASE FOR IRAQ WAR BEFORE CONGRESS; TRANSCRIPT REVEALED
Two months ago Democratic hopeful Wesley Clark declared in a debate that he has always been firmly against the current Iraq War.
"I've been very consistent... I've been against this war from the beginning," the former general said in Detroit on October 26.
"I was against it last summer, I was against it in the fall, I was against it in the winter, I was against it in the spring. And I'm against it now."
But just six month prior in an op-ed in the LONDON TIMES Clark offered praise for the courage of President Bush's action.
"President Bush and Tony Blair should be proud of their resolve in the face of so much doubt," Clark wrote on April 10, 2003. "Can anything be more moving than the joyous throngs swarming the streets of Baghdad? Memories of the fall of the Berlin Wall, and the defeat of Milosevic in Belgrade flood back. Statues and images of Saddam are smashed and defiled."
Even the most ardent Clark supporter will question if Clark's current and past stand on the Iraq war -- is confusion or deception, after the DRUDGE REPORT reveals:
TWO WEEKS BEFORE CONGRESS PASSED THE IRAQ CONGRESSIONAL RESOLUTION WESLEY CLARK MADE THE CASE FOR WAR; TESTIFIED THAT SADDAM HAD 'CHEMICAL AND BIOLOGICAL WEAPONS'
Less than 18 months ago, Wesley Clark offered his testimony before the Committee On Armed Services at the U.S. House Of Representatives.
"There's no requirement to have any doctrine here. I mean this is simply a longstanding right of the United States and other nations to take the actions they deem necessary in their self defense," Clark told Congress on September 26, 2002.
"Every president has deployed forces as necessary to take action. He's done so without multilateral support if necessary. He's done so in advance of conflict if necessary. In my experience, I was the commander of the European forces in NATO. When we took action in Kosovo, we did not have United Nations approval to do this and we did so in a way that was designed to preempt Serb ethnic cleansing and regional destabilization there. There were some people who didn' t agree with that decision. The United Nations was not able to agree to support it with a resolution."
Clark continued: "There' s no question that Saddam Hussein is a threat.... Yes, he has chemical and biological weapons. He's had those for a long time. But the United States right now is on a very much different defensive posture than we were before September 11th of 2001... He is, as far as we know, actively pursuing nuclear capabilities, though he doesn't have nuclear warheads yet. If he were to acquire nuclear weapons, I think our friends in the region would face greatly increased risks as would we."
More Clark: "And, I want to underscore that I think the United States should not categorize this action as preemptive. Preemptive and that doctrine has nothing whatsoever to do with this problem. As Richard Perle so eloquently pointed out, this is a problem that's longstanding. It's been a decade in the making. It needs to be dealt with and the clock is ticking on this."
Clark explained: "I think there' s no question that, even though we may not have the evidence as Richard [Perle] says, that there have been such contacts [between Iraq and al Qaeda]. It' s normal. It's natural. These are a lot of bad actors in the same region together. They are going to bump into each other. They are going to exchange information. They're going to feel each other out and see whether there are opportunities to cooperate. That's inevitable in this region, and I think it's clear that regardless of whether or not such evidence is produced of these connections that Saddam Hussein is a threat."
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