Excerpt from DoD News Briefing
Subject: Statement on the Chemical Weapons Convention
Gen. John M. Shalikashvili,USA, Chairman, Joint Chiefs of Staff
Thursday, April 17, 1997 - 1:30 p.m.

Q: General Shalikashvili, today your predecessor, General Powell, testified on the Hill. He supported the Chemical Weapons Convention. But he also said that the revelations of the past couple of days, that the CIA had failed to list panacea on a list of suspected Iraqi chemical weapons sight was quote, "outrageous", and said that if he were still in office, he would be ranting and raving about this. You are in office. What's your reaction to the news of the last couple of days?

A: Well I am -- I would let General Powell make his own judgments how he would react to it. I'm not one who rants and raves. That doesn't mean that I'm not very much concerned with any kind of information that indicates that we could have provided some warning and didn't. The proper thing to do now in my judgment is to ensure that the correct investigations are conducted into the reasons why such information might not have been made available and ensure we fix the system so that in the future, if in fact there was this omission, something like that cannot happen again.

Q: Is this an intelligence failure in your opinion?

A: I have no idea. I don't know enough about it either than what the CIA has revealed about that case, so I think it's too early to draw any conclusions.

Q: General, on the Chemical Weapons Convention, as I understand the Chiefs' position is that you feel that you can deter the use of chemical weapons based on the Gulf War without having a chemical weapons deterrent. In your statement of the use of overwhelming and devastating response, does that include the use of nuclear weapons or is that strictly limited to a conventional response?

A: I don't think it would be very useful for me to be terribly specific on that issue other than to tell you that we do not exclude any capability that's at our disposal.

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