Winston S. Churchill, Former British Parliamentarian

This is a partial transcript from Your World with Neil Cavuto, April 8, 2003, that was edited for clarity. Click here for complete access to all of Neil Cavuto's CEO interviews.

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NEIL CAVUTO, HOST: Early Tuesday morning, President Bush and British Prime Minister Tony Blair held their third meeting in three weeks, saying that Saddam Hussein's grip on power was slipping quickly from his fingers.


TONY BLAIR, BRITISH PRIME MINISTER: I think anyone who has seen the joy on the faces of people in Basra, as they realize that the regime that they detest is finally collapsing, knows very well that this was indeed a war of liberation and not a conquest.


CAVUTO: President Bush also said that the United Nations would play a vital role in Iraq's reconstruction. And is this a good idea? Let's ask former British parliamentarian Winston S. Churchill, author and grandson of the former British prime minister.

Mr. Churchill, good to have you back.


CAVUTO: Let me ask you a little bit about this post-Iraq U.N. role. Should there be one?

CHURCHILL: Well, I think inevitably the U.N. has a role. The big question is how great a role? It has an important role in food aid, in humanitarian aid. And I think that is something that we would all welcome. What we emphatically don't want, at least, I emphatically don't want and I doubt that the administration would wish to see is that those who were the principal protectors of Saddam Hussein and his regime, namely the governments of France, Russia and China who are permanent members of the Security Council, that they should have a veto over how matters unfold in Baghdad, and in the liberated Iraq.

CAVUTO: Why and how could you explain the French intransigence on this issue?

CHURCHILL: I think it has many reasons, the loss of their past greatness, that they have never forgiven the Anglo-Saxons for liberating them. I doubt if they ever will. They seem to find it easier to forgive the Germans for occupying them for five years. But I think above all they see the world through a totally different perspective than the British and the Americans. And we viewed with grave concern the stockpiling of and amassing of weapons of mass destruction which I have no doubt will be found once this war is over. And.

CAVUTO: I just have a feeling, though, Mr. Churchill, that even if we found proof that those were indeed stockpiled weapons, even if we had unequivocal proof there was distinct al Qaeda connection between the events of September 11 and Iraq, the French would probably still say, no.

CHURCHILL: They probably still would. They feel that they would like to be running the show. And if they can't call the shots, and control this great American Goliath, this only superpower that bestrides the globe, then let's try and take him down a peg or two. Let's, humiliate him. And I think that was the game plan of President Chirac, a very foolish game plan, I might say. And I'm sure it is one that France will pay for.

CAVUTO: Let me ask you a little bit about Tony Blair and President Bush. Of course, they have been meeting over the last couple days. And there does seem to be a perception that they want to keep the French happy, they want to keep the Germans happy, much of that presumably at the behest of Tony Blair. What is to stop us from just telling the French and the Germans, the hell with you?

CHURCHILL: Well, one can do that. But, I mean, if it is possible to rebuild bridges and get them back on side in a constructive, positive way, then we should do so. But, certainly, we shouldn't go cap in hand to them saying, it is over to you now. You know, it is American and British blood which will have liberated Iraq. And that is something that we cannot forget.

CAVUTO: Now let's talk a little bit about the relationship between the president and Tony Blair. They met for the third time in as many weeks. They have struck up an oddly close relationship considering they come from different ends of the political spectrum. Would you have been able to see this kind of closeness in war with Tony Blair and Bill Clinton?

CHURCHILL: I suppose it is possible. But whether Bill Clinton would have gone to war, I don't know. But undoubtedly, there is an incredibly strong and close bond between these two men, who basically are from the different political backgrounds. They have wholly different political perspectives. But on one thing they agree absolutely, that Saddam is a major threat to the world and had to be dealt with, and had to be dealt with not by diplomacy but by force of arms. And I salute their courage.

CAVUTO: All right. Winston S. Churchill, thank you sir, a real pleasure.

CHURCHILL: My pleasure.

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