Powell: Let's not go there

By Geraldine Sealey
Published February 12, 2004 3:39AM (UTC)
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House Democrats on the International Relations Committee were questioning Secretary of State Colin Powell today about why weapons inspectors never found stockpiles of WMD's in Iraq Powell says he was "surprised" they didn't when the subject of President Bush's National Guard service came up. Rep. Sherrod Brown, D-Ohio, compared Gen. Powell's military experience to Bush's questionable record with the National Guard, saying the president "may have been AWOL." With that, Powell blew up.

The USA Today printed the heated exchange late this afternoon on its Web site: "First of all, Mr. Brown, I won't dignify your comments about the president because you don't know what you are talking about," Powell snapped. "I'm sorry I don't know what you mean, Mr. Secretary," Brown replied.


"You made reference to the president," Powell shot back. Brown then repeated his understanding that Bush may have been AWOL from guard duty. "Mr. Brown, let's not go there," Powell retorted. "Let's not go there in this hearing. If you want to have a political fight on this matter, that is very controversial, and I think it is being dealt with by the White House, fine, but let's not go there."

Geraldine Sealey

Geraldine Sealey is senior news editor at Salon.com.

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