Yes it is true that "no-mind" is the ultimate form of budo and that it is through your training that budo is developed and ultimatly released without "cognitive" thought. This is precisely why one must train for all situations, attaining the "feel" of budo is paramount to particular techniques or strikes.
Although I have heard the quote attributed to Ueshiba, I find it ambiguous. Anytime an opponent comes in contact with me, immediatly after absorbing their energy, I give them a powerful ki atemi. What I am trying to say is that there are many different types of atemi. Ueshiba may have meant this.
A physical atemi on every technique is far from necessary, I know
this, so I can't believe that O'Sensei would mean this. I also know that he was fully aware of the "feel" of budo and I am sure that he wanted his students to develop this feeling. That's why I think he invented Aikido.
Of all the wonderful aspects of Aikido (blending, redirecting, softness, circles, extension, rootedness, creative aspects, ect.) could someone please tell me why of all things, Atemi recieves so much attention from the net community?