Capabilities and Intentions

  • Joseph M. SiracusaEmail author
  • Laurens J. Visser
Part of the The Evolving American Presidency book series (EAP)


This chapter begins with the interrogation of Saddam Hussein by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) in Baghdad, Iraq, in 2004, consisting of interviews and casual conversations with FBI agent George Piro in Saddam Hussein’s prison cell. The dialogue between Saddam and Piro reflects American attempts to reason why it was in Iraq—from accusations that Saddam had rebuilt weapons of mass destruction to suspicions that Iraq was harboring terrorists. But one question emerges clearly from the interrogation of Saddam: Why exactly did the United States go to war with Iraq in 1991 and 2003? The answer can be found in two presidents, George H. W. Bush and George W. Bush, and how they interpreted Saddam Hussein’s capabilities as an Iraqi leader versus his intentions.

Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2020

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.School of Global StudiesRoyal Melbourne Institute of TechnologyMelbourneAustralia

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