Debra J. Saunders

Rice praised the U.N. Security Council for having "a good year": "In the month of July, it got a resolution on Iran and a resolution on the North Korean missile test. It's about to get a resolution on the North Korean nuclear test. It ended a war in Lebanon, not without a lot of American involvement in actually putting together the cease-fire. But the international community has put together a resolution on Darfur to get troops into Darfur. So we're doing better in the Security Council."

Will Rice come back to California when she is no longer secretary of state? Will she run for governor?

"No, I'm just coming back to California."

A recent Senate Intelligence Committee report found that, in 1995, Iraq attempted to come clean with U.N. inspectors about programs worked on by defector Husayn Kamil in the hope that the regime "would gain favor with the U.N. as a measure of goodwill and cooperation." But U.N. and U.S. officials saw the gesture as proof Saddam Hussein could not be trusted.

"He 'fessed up a lot because he knew that the defection was going to produce all kinds of information. But the fact is that this information around the Iraqi WMD program was really pretty extraordinary. I think when people go back and look, there are going to be really important questions that probably can be answered from the documents, but that haven't (been) yet, as to even how widespread within the Iraqi government it was known what their programs were, what the state of them was. Because he, on the one hand, was saying that he didn't have them, and on the other hand, (was) not providing any information and data that he -- that would have given anybody comfort that, in fact, he didn't."

Her last word: "I don't think Saddam Hussein was misunderstood."

Debra J. Saunders

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