Q The President has publicly acknowledged that we went to war under false information, mistaken information. Why does he insist on staying there if we were there falsely, and continue to kill Iraqis?
MR. McCLELLAN: Well, maybe you missed some of his recent speeches and his remarks, but the President said it was the right decision to remove Saddam Hussein and his regime from power --
Q And a right decision to move in and to tell the people, the American people, that it was all a mistake, and stay there?
MR. McCLELLAN: I don't think he said that. He said that Saddam Hussein was a destabilizing force in a dangerous region of the world --
Q That isn't true. We had a choke-hold on him.
MR. McCLELLAN: It is true. He was a threat. And the threat has been removed.
Q We had sanctions, we had satellites, we were bombing.
MR. McCLELLAN: Let's talk about why it's so important, what we're working to accomplish in Iraq --
Q I want to know why we're still there killing people, when we went in by mistake.
MR. McCLELLAN: We are liberating people and freeing people to live in a democracy. And why we're still there --
Q Do you think we're spreading democracy when you spy and put out disinformation and do all the things that -- secret prisons, and torture?
MR. McCLELLAN: I reject your characterizations wholly. I reject your characterizations wholly. The United States is helping to advance freedom in a dangerous region of the world.
Q -- recognize this kind of --
MR. McCLELLAN: For too long we thought we had stability by ignoring freedom in the Middle East. Well, we showed -- we saw on September 11th --
Q -- 30,000 plus?
MR. McCLELLAN: Well, Helen, we can have a debate, or you can let me respond to your questions. I think this is an important subject for the American people to talk about. By advancing freedom and democracy in the Middle East we're helping to protect our own security. It's a dangerous region --
Q By killing people in their own country?
MR. McCLELLAN: Well, I reject that. We're liberating and freeing people and we're targeting the enemy. We're killing the terrorists and we're going after the Saddam loyalists.
Q The President said 30,000, more or less.
MR. McCLELLAN: And you know who is responsible for most of that? It's the terrorists and the Saddam loyalists who want to turn back to the past.
Q We didn't kill anybody there?
MR. McCLELLAN: Our military goes out of the way to minimize civilian casualties. They target the enemy --
Q You admit they kill?
MR. McCLELLAN: Well, we've got a lot of technology that we can use to target the enemy without going after -- without collateral damage of civilians. And that's what our military does.
Q Are you kidding?
MR. McCLELLAN: Oh, I'm going to stand up for our military. Our military goes out of the way to protect civilians. In fact --
Q Fallujah, we didn't kill any civilians?
MR. McCLELLAN: We freed some 25 million people in Iraq that were living under a brutal regime.