U.S. President George W. Bush has sent Congress formal notification that diplomatic efforts to disarm Iraq have failed, signaling his intention to press forward with military action.
"Reliance by the United States on further diplomatic and other peaceful means alone will neither adequately protect the national security of the United States against the continuing threat posed by Iraq, nor likely lead to enforcement of all relevant United Nations Security Council resolutions regarding Iraq," said Mr. Bush in the formal notification.
The president also said use of force against Iraq is "consistent with the war on terror" and links Iraq to the al-Qaida terrorist organization.
And he says the United States has clear authority under United Nations Security Council resolution 1441 to compel Iraq's compliance.
Under the resolution approved by Congress last October, the president was required to send this formal notification before taking military action.
Although that resolution passed overwhelmingly in both House and Senate, congressional opponents of a war wanted the president to return to Congress for another vote.