Former President Richard Nixon says he would authorize a CIA hit on Saddam Hussein to prevent the Iraqi strongman from resurrecting the country's crippled armed forces.

"He is an international menace. If I could find a way to get him out of there, even putting a contract out on him, if the CIA still did that sort of a thing, assuming it ever did, I would be for it," Nixon says in a "60 Minutes" interview to be broadcast Sunday night.Unless such action is taken or a revolution throws Saddam out, the Iraqi leaders "will again be a threat to peace and stability in the area," Nixon predicted.

The ex-president, who was forced to resign in 1974 over the Watergate scandal, also defended Nancy Reagan against the sizzling book written by Kitty Kelley.

"Nancy Reagan was first lady for eight years, and I just don't believe in books that muckrake and destroy what most of us thought about (the Reagans) while they were there," he said.