Lott: "People Need to Know"

By: Stan Torgerson
By: Stan Torgerson

Mississippi Sen. Trent Lott said the questions about whether or not to release pictures of the deceased sons of Saddam Hussein served a purpose.

"I don't like that sort of thing. I certainly didn't like it when that was done with our American troops in a couple of instances. I don't think it's a good practice. However, we do have a need to really show the people of Iraq that indeed this brutal, cruel, regime of rapists and murderers are not coming back," said Lott.

He said the questions would come up again if Saddam Hussein were to be killed.

"It will depend on the circumstances at the time," said Lott. "The condition of the body, assuming there is one, the need for it. Maybe there will be less need for it now that we've shown in fact, okay, here's the proof," said Lott. "When we tell you that we've done something or we've captured somebody or somebody's been killed,
you will be more inclined to believe us, hopefully."

The senator was asked to confirm information the Congress is likely to increase funding for Lockheed Martin's C130J and F22 building programs.

"We want to see that continue. We're going to provide additional funds for both of those aircraft this year and so I believe there will be funds in the defense appropriations bill," Lott said.

As for the possibility of Meridian Mayor John Robert Smith being reappointed to the Amtrak board, the senator said it has not yet been decided.

However, Lott did voice his support for nationwide passenger rail, saying either fund it adequately or shut it down.

"My attitude is, if we're not going to fund them adequately, to keep them operating or to keep them just dying a slow withering death, then we ought to go ahead and end it."

But Lott said he supports passenger rail because it is important to Mississippi.


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