The apparent absence of weapons of mass destruction in Iraq following the U.S.-led invasion in 2003 caught former President Bush by surprise, Bush wrote in his memoir due for publication next week (see GSN, Oct. 25).
The Bush administration said intelligence demonstrated Iraq possessed of weapons of mass destruction in making its case for war against the Hussein regime. However, no operational WMD stockpiles or programs were discovered in the Middle Eastern country following the invasion.
"No one was more shocked or angry than I was when we didn't find the weapons. I had a sickening feeling every time I thought about it. I still do," Bush wrote in his book, titled "Decision Points."
Still, the former U.S. president did not consider issuing an statement of regret for taking military action against Iraq, he told NBC's "Today" show.
"Apologizing would basically say the decision was a wrong decision,” Bush said. “And I don't believe it was the wrong decision. I thought the best way to handle this was to find out why. And what went wrong. And to remedy it" (NBC News/MSNBC, Nov. 3).