Democratic presidential candidate John Kerry said Friday he would be willing to launch a pre-emptive strike against terrorists if he had adequate intelligence of a threat. Kerry offered some support for one of the most controversial aspects of President Bush’s national security policy, even as he criticized the president for not reforming intelligence agencies after the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attacks. “Am I prepared as president to go get them before they get us if we locate them and have the sufficient intelligence? You bet I am,” he said at a news conference at his Washington headquarters. The Bush administration laid out the doctrine of pre-emption months before the Iraq war began in March 2003. It argued that the United States cannot rely on its vast arsenal to deter attacks and must be willing to strike first against potential threats. Critics of the policy say the Iraq war shows how the country could be driven to war by flawed intelligence. Full Story
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