Cheney, September 14th, 2003 ...
MR. RUSSERT: Now, Ambassador Joe Wilson, a year before that, was sent over by the CIA because you raised the question about uranium from Africa. He says he came back from Niger and said that, in fact, he could not find any documentation that, in fact, Niger had sent uranium to Iraq or engaged in that activity and reported it back to the proper channels. Were you briefed on his findings in February, March of 2002?
VICE PRES. CHENEY: No. I donât know Joe Wilson. Iâve never met Joe Wilson. A question had arisen. Iâd heard a report that the Iraqis had been trying to acquire uranium in Africa, Niger in particular. I get a daily brief on my own each day before I meet with the president to go through the intel. And I ask lots of question. One of the questions I asked at that particular time about this, I said, âWhat do we know about this?â They take the question. He came back within a day or two and said, âThis is all we know. Thereâs a lot we donât know,â end of statement. And Joe WilsonâI donât who sent Joe Wilson. He never submitted a report that I ever saw when he came back.
I guess the intriguing thing, Tim, on the whole thing, this question of whether or not the Iraqis were trying to acquire uranium in Africa. In the British report, this week, the Committee of the British Parliament, which just spent 90 days investigating all of this, revalidated their British claim that Saddam was, in fact, trying to acquire uranium in Africa. What was in the State of the Union speech and what was in the original British White papers. So there may be difference of opinion there. I donât know what the truth is on the ground with respect to that, but I guessâlike I say, I donât know Mr. Wilson. I probably shouldnât judge him. I have no idea who hired him and it never came...
MR. RUSSERT: The CIA did.
VICE PRES. CHENEY: Who in the CIA, I donât know.
This would have been three and a half months after Cheney reportedly received a detailed briefing on just what had happened from George Tenet.