Image: Condoleezza Rice
Ron Sachs  /  Rabinowitz-Dorf via AP
Former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice speaks to grade school students at the Jewish Primary Day School in Washington on Sunday.
updated 5/4/2009 6:18:59 PM ET 2009-05-04T22:18:59

Former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice told Jewish elementary school students that the Bush administration did not use illegal interrogation tactics. Her remarks were in response to a question from Misha Lerner, a fourth-grader at the Jewish Primary Day School of the Nation's Capital, The Washington Post reported Monday.

Rice spoke at the school Sunday before giving a lecture at the Sixth & I Historic Synagogue.

Lerner asked Rice what she thought about the Obama administration's remarks on interrogation methods authorized by its predecessors.

Rice responded that she didn't want to criticize President Barack Obama. But she also said that President George W. Bush assured his administration that "we would do nothing, nothing, that was against the law or against our obligations internationally."

"I hope you understand that it was a very difficult time. We were all so terrified of another attack on the country," she said. "Even under those most difficult circumstances, the president was not prepared to do something illegal, and I hope people understand that we were trying to protect the country."

Last week the former secretary of state told Stanford University students that "we did not torture anyone."

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