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Powell: US Pre-War Rhetoric Sometimes 'Too Loud,' 'Too Direct'

Former U.S. Secretary of State Colin Powell says the Bush administration's rhetoric was sometimes "too loud" and "too direct" in the months leading up to the 2003 invasion of Iraq.

Mr. Powell, who left his post in January, told the German weekly magazine Stern that remarks like Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld's characterization of some European countries opposed to the war as "Old Europe" did not help build confidence.

The former secretary of state expressed anger that some of the information he presented to the United Nations Security Council in February 2003 about Iraq's weapons of mass destruction was wrong. He said he received it from intelligence agencies, and he insisted he did not know, at the time, it was wrong.

The alleged presence of weapons of mass destruction was one of the Bush administration's leading arguments for the war. But no such weapons have been found.

Some information for this report provided by AP and Reuters.