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 You are in: Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice > Former Secretaries of State > Former Secretary of State Colin L. Powell > Speeches and Remarks > 2003 > February

Videotaped Remarks on Iraq's Weapons of Mass Destruction

Secretary Colin L. Powell
Washington, DC
February 13, 2003

[DSL/cable] [dial-up] [audio]

I want to share with you some of the most important points on Iraq’s weapons of mass destruction that I presented to the United Nations Security Council on February 5. Saddam Hussein and his regime have made no effort, no effort, to disarm, as required by the international community. Iraq was given one last chance to comply with UN Resolution 1441. Saddam Hussein is not taking that one last chance.

Chief UN inspector Dr. Blix said on January 27, “Iraq appears not to have come to a genuine acceptance of the disarmament that was demanded of it.” That’s his quote, not mine. You need to understand how important this threat is. People have risked their lives to let the world know what Saddam Hussein is really up to.

This conversation between a general and a soldier shows the general giving specific instruction to remove the words “nerve agents” from all of their communications because they were worried somebody might be listening. We were.

GRAPHICS: Audio and Transcript conversation about removing nerve agents

Col: Captain Ibrahim?
Capt: I am with you, Sir.

Col: Remove.
Capt: Remove. [Repeats instructions]

Col: The expression.
Capt: The expression.

Col: “Nerve agents.”
Capt: “Nerve agents.”

Col: Wherever it comes up.
Capt. Wherever it comes up.

Col: In the wireless instructions.
Capt: In the instructions.

Col: Wireless.
Capt: Wireless.

Col: Okay, Buddy?
Capt: Consider it done, Sir

GRAPHICS: PICTUREs of trucks removing evidence from sites
In this PICTURE, at a ballistic missile facility, five cargo trucks and a crane showed up to move missiles two days before a visit by the UN inspectors, clear evidence that this site was cleaned out. We’ve seen this kind of housecleaning at close to 30 sites.

PICTURE: Documents found in the home of an Iraqi Scientist
From intelligence, the inspectors recently uncovered 2,000 pages of documents. Just think; how much information is being hidden from inspectors, in homes and cars, all over Iraq?

GRAPHICS: Mobile biological weapons factories
After inspectors revealed his earlier biological program, Saddam built biological weapons factories on wheels.

PHOTOS: Aluminum tubes
Iraq ordered aluminum tubes from 11 countries with specifications much higher than that needed for rockets. Through front companies, Saddam also ordered magnets, balancing machines and other equipment, along with the tubes. All of this is used to enrich uranium for nuclear weapons.

GRAPHICS: Iraq is harboring terrorists, including Al Qaida
Al Zarqawi, a senior Al Qaida associate, established a network of poison cells centered on Iraq and he operates a training camp there.

Iraq’s weapons of mass destruction are a real and present danger to the people of Iraq, to its neighbors and to the world.

Time is running out. The United Nations Security Council must stand by its resolutions and eliminate the threat of Iraq’s dangerous weapons of mass destruction.


Released on February 14, 2003

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