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For Immediate Release
March 6, 2003
Global Message on Iraq
United Nations Resolution 1441 was meant to end 12 years of lies and manipulation. Nothing we have seen since the passage of 1441 indicates that Iraq has decided to disarm or decided to actively,unconditionally, and immediately cooperate with the inspectors.
Intelligence from multiple sources shows that Iraq is continuing efforts to deceive inspectors by moving weapons of mass destruction material around the country to avoid detection. Baghdad is also working to discredit intelligence information being provided to the inspection teams by the United States and our allies.
The inspections are not working. Dribbling out of a warhead here, a missile there, may give the appearance of disarmament, but it is not reducing Saddam's capabilities. It is not eliminating the threat. He gives a little to save a lot, but we've caught on to this game.
Iraq has had more than a decade to decide to disarm. Iraq could have made the decision on November 8 when 1441 was passed. It could make the decision today.
Process is not performance. Concessions are not compliance. Destroying a handful of missiles is not disarmament. Saddam Hussein is betting that his contempt for the will of the Security Council is stronger than our collective resolve. Division among us will only convince Saddam that he is right.
If Saddam leaves us no choice but to disarm him by force, the United States and our coalition partners will do our utmost to minimize the loss of civilian life, meet the humanitarian needs of the Iraqi people, and take responsibility for the post-war stabilization of the country.
We want an Iraq whose people are free from fear and can look to the future with hope. The hard work of rehabilitation and reconstruction will begin at the first possible moment, but our collective, long-term commitment to Iraq will be our efforts to help the Iraqi people build a unified Iraq that does not pose a threat to international peace and a welcome presence among nations.