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Political Analysts Shields and Brooks Discuss Blair Visit, Iraq and FBI Raids

Syndicated columnist Mark Shields and New York Times columnist David Brooks discuss Prime Minister Blair's visit to the White House, immigration reform, Iraq, recent FBI raids on Capitol Hill and the Enron verdict.

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    And now, before we go to Shields and Brooks, Bush and Blair. The president and the prime minister had a joint news conference at the White House last night. A British reporter asked if the leaders had any regrets about the war in Iraq.


    Mr. President, you spoke about missteps and mistakes in Iraq. Could I ask both of you which missteps and mistakes of your own you most regret?

    GEORGE W. BUSH, President of the United States: Saying, "Bring it on," kind of tough talk, you know, that sent the wrong signal to people, that — I learned some lessons about expressing myself maybe in a little more sophisticated manner, you know, "Wanted dead or alive," that kind of talk.

    I think, in certain parts of the world, it was misinterpreted, and so I learned from that.

    And, you know, I think the biggest mistake that's happened so far, at least from our country's involvement in Iraq, is Abu Ghraib. We've been paying for that for a long period of time.

    And unlike Iraq, however, under Saddam, the people who committed those acts were brought to justice; they have been given a fair trial, and tried, and convicted.

    TONY BLAIR, Prime Minister of Britain: I think inevitably some of the things that we thought were going to be the biggest challenge proved not to be, and some of the things we didn't expect to be challenges at all have proved to be immense.

    And, you know, I think it's easy to go back over mistakes that we may have made, but the biggest reason why Iraq has been difficult is the determination of our opponents to defeat us. And I don't think we should be surprised at that.

    I'm afraid, in the end, we're always going to have to be prepared for the fall of Saddam not to be the rise of democratic Iraq, that it was going to be a more difficult process.

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