Skip to comments.Flashback! Excerpt from Kerry on CrossFire in 1997 (Kerry RIPS into France, et al)
Posted on 02/29/2004 11:34:02 AM PST by jmstein7
SHOW: CNN CROSSFIRE 19:30 pm ET
November 12, 1997; Wednesday 7:30 pm Eastern Time
Transcript # 97111200V20
JOHN SUNUNU, CROSSFIRE: Senator Kerry, in fact, in spite of the administration claiming it has restored unanimity, that has not occurred. All the strength of this resolution had to be pulled out of it get any votes at all other than our own. Isn't this exercise actually counterproductive in sending a signal to Iraq that the coalition still remains frayed?
SEN. JOHN KERRY, (D), MASSACHUSETTS, FOREIGN RELATIONS COMMITTEE: Well, John, you're correct that this resolution is less than we would have liked. I don't think anybody can deny that we would have liked it to have threatened force and we would have liked it to carry the term serious consequences will flow. On the other hand, the coalition is together. I mean the fact is there is a unanimous statement by the security council and the United Nations that there has to be immediate, unrestricted, unconditional access to the sites. That's very strong language. And it also references the underlying resolution on which the use of force is based. So clearly the allies may not like it, and I think that's our great concern -- where's the backbone of Russia, where's the backbone of France, where are they in expressing their condemnation of such clearly illegal activity, but in a sense, they're now climbing into a box and they will have enormous difficulty not following up on this if there is not compliance by Iraq.
KERRY: Well, John, there's absolutely no statement that they have made or that they will make that will prevent the United States of America and this president or any president from acting in what they believe are the best interests of our country. And obviously it's disappointing. It was disappointing a month ago not to have the French and the Russians understanding that they shouldn't give any signals of weakening on the sanctions and I think those signals would have helped bring about this crisis because they permitted Saddam Hussein to interpret that maybe the moment was right for him to make this challenge.
SUNUNU: But isn't what he has seen is a loss of U.S. leadership and an erosion under an administration that has failed to lead?
KERRY: On the contrary. The administration is leading. The administration is making it clear that they don't believe that they even need the U.N. Security Council to sign off on a material breach because the finding of material breach was made by Mr. Butler. So furthermore, I think the United States has always reserved the right and will reserve the right to act in its best interests. And clearly it is not just our best interests, it is in the best interests of the world to make it clear to Saddam Hussein that he's not going to get away with a breach of the '91 agreement that he's got to live up to, which is allowing inspections and dismantling his weapons and allowing us to know that he has dismantled his weapons. That's the price he pays for invading Kuwait and starting a war.
KERRY: Correct, absolutely correct, and I believe, and they stood with us today and I am saying to you that it is my judgment that by standing with us today and calling for the unrestricted, unconditional, unlimited, you know, access, they have now taken a stand that they are duty bound to enforce and if Saddam Hussein doesn't do that, the president, I think, has begun a process which you remember very well, John, was not done in one week, in one day, in one month. It took months to weave together the fabric to lead up to an understanding of what was at stake. I am convinced that many people have not yet even focused in full measure on what is at stake.
PRESS: Are you suggesting, are you calling for a military, U.S. military strike against Iran now before...
PRESS: Iraq, I'm sorry, before any other United Nations action is taken?
KING: No, I'm saying is that very soon, though, we would have to use the threat of military force because as Bill Richardson said that this, these are delaying tactics brought about by the Iraqis and this is very serious. When you're talking about biological warfare and when you're talking about the fact that they've already adjusted the cameras, they've already fooled around with the equipment which gauges the air, they've already moved some of the devices away from the U.N. inspectors. This is a very, very serious situation and I'm saying that we would have to, I think, threaten very severe military action at an early date. Now exactly what that would be is obviously, we have to get more information on it, but based on I think what all of us know, it is very, very critical and not too much time more can be wasted.
Kerry explains Bush's position better than Bush!!
Only problem is that he doesn't mean it.
Or does he?
Or doesn't he?
Or does he?
On every issue, that's his problem.
Of course, at the time he was in fact 'splainen Clintoon's "position."
Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.