“Simply stated,” then-vice president Dick Cheney said in a speech to the Veterans of Foreign Wars National Convention on August 26, 2002, “there is no doubt that Saddam Hussein now has weapons of mass destruction.”
More than a decade after the beginning of a war that took hundreds of thousands of lives including 4,804 American soldiers, Cheney is saying much the same thing — though no weapons of mass destruction were ever found in Iraq.
“What we gain and my concern was then and it remains today is that the biggest threat we face is the possibility of terrorist groups like al Qaeda equipped with weapons of mass destruction, with nukes, bugs or gas,” he told Fox News’ Bill O’Reilly on Monday night when asked if the war was worth it. “That was the threat after 9/11 and when we took down Saddam Hussein we eliminated Iraq as a potential source of that.”
Cheney is confident that his support for the Iraq invasion and the use of waterboarding to torture prisoners were the right moves. They have, however, resulted in him not being able to travel to areas hostile to such choices, such as Canada.
In 2012, a poll showed that a majority of Republicans still believed that Iraq had weapons of mass destruction.
Screenshot via The O’Reilly Factor