This is what Saito Sensei said about the origins of Aikido:
"... That is why weapons are an especially important part of aikido."
Ueshiba weapons, Saito weapons or Saotome weapons?
Those of us who actually train in Aikido must get our understanding of Aikido from our teachers, not from non-Aikido practicing individuals.
Well, as I'm not actually training in Aikido, my understanding comes from various sources... I'm not into buying the "because sensei said so it must be true". There are historians, philosophers, sociologists and martial artists inside and outside the Aikido world worth paying attention to.
You know, looking at the forest (Aikido at large) instead of focusing in one tree (Saotome's particular understanding of Aikido).