Pentagon Officials Shoot Straight About War - WLOX.com - The News for South Mississippi

06/25/03

Pentagon Officials Shoot Straight About War

A Pentagon official told a group of South Mississippians Wednesday that once we find Saddam Hussein, we'll likely find Iraq's weapons of mass destruction.

Lieutenant Colonel Archie Davis is the deputy director of Community Relations for the Secretary of Defense. Davis says Iraqis still remember how the United States didn't support uprisings there after the Gulf War, and they are leery to come forward with information until it's certain Saddam Hussein and his sons are no longer a threat.

Some listeners said they respected Davis' direct approach.

"If the public knew 1/10 of the intelligence that we gather daily, the people would never leave home," said Lt. Col. Davis.

Davis says life in the country we call home hasn't been the same since September 11th and won't be for a long time.

"I have to tell you that I think for the rest of your and my lifetime, we'll be involved in the global war on terrorism to some degree," he said.

Colonel Davis says he's often asked if launching Operation Iraqi Freedom was the right thing to do.

"Had we not acted against the potential and known threats that we knew existed in Iraq at the time, the life that we know today, and for sure in the very near future, would not as safe and secure as it is," he said.

He says he's not ashamed to admit that the Defense Department doesn't know where Iraq put its weapons of mass destruction.

"We are attempting to find weapons of mass destruction while men and women on the ground are being shot at. Not that we can't do them both, but we are in a deliberate process."

During his speech, Colonel Davis didn't mince words on the tough issues like what should be done to terrorists caught living in the United States.

"I'm speaking the truth. We're gonna track them down. They will surrender and be detainees or they will die. It's plain and simple."

by Danielle Thomas

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