For Immediate Release
July 16, 2004
From remarks by Secretary of State Powell, 7/15/04
As President Bush has put it, our goal in Iraq is to give strength to a friend, a free representative government that serves its people and fights on their behalf.
We did the right thing in Iraq. The transfer of sovereignty to Iraqis and the actions of the Interim Iraqi Government will move us further in the right direction.
President Bush went to the United Nations and said that for 12 years, Saddam Hussein's regime ignored their resolutions -- orders of the international community. For 12 years, the regime gave incomplete answers and outright lies about weapons of mass destruction.
The United States pointed out the terrorist activity Iraq was involved in and the human rights abuses that took place. Our international colleagues believed in this case. It was an accurate case.
Now, a year later, we know there were some errors in that case. However, it has now been substantiated by the Senate Select Committee and by Lord Butler that Saddam Hussein had never given up the intention of having usable weapons of mass destruction.
President Bush, along with many other world leaders recognized this danger and felt that action was required.
Action was taken and a terrible regime is gone, never to return. Now the challenge before us is to remain strong. Our purpose is to bring democracy to this part of the world, thereby fundamentally changing this part of the world and reshaping history for the 21st Century.