- Jul 31, 2005
- Reaction score
- Political Leaning
WASHINGTON (Reuters) -
President George W. Bush on Thursday rejected critics of the
Iraq war who demand a U.S. pullout and cast the conflict as necessary to prevent Islamic militants from gaining a foothold for a sweeping empire.
"We will never back down, never give in and never accept anything less than complete victory," Bush said in a speech on Washington's war on terrorism.
Bush used new and more specific language in characterizing the opponents as part of an Islamic radical movement "with a clear and coherent ideology" and territorial ambitions, rather than dismissing them as the terrorist "evildoers" of his early speeches on the issue.
Bush sought to put the Iraq war in a global context, calling it a central front in the war on terrorism, and accusing al Qaeda militants and their supporters of seeking to overthrow moderate Arab governments and to attack U.S. targets.
He said the United States and its allies had disrupted 10 serious al Qaeda plots since the September 11, 2001, attacks, three inside the United States.
A CNN/Gallup/USA Today poll last month said only 32 percent of Americans approved of Bush's handling of the war, which he launched in 2003 citing the threat of weapons of mass destruction possessed by
Saddam Hussein's government.
Since such weapons were never found, and al Qaeda followers have spilled into Iraq to fight against the Americans, Bush now calls Iraq a central focus of the war on terrorism he launched after the September 11 attacks.
His remarks were aimed at an increasingly restive American public, which is weary of daily television images of bombings from Iraq and holding funerals for the more than 1,900 Americans killed in Iraq.
"Wars are not won without sacrifice, and this war will require more sacrifice, more time, and more resolve. The terrorists are as brutal an enemy as we have ever faced," he said.
"Instead, the president continued to falsely assert there is a link between the war in Iraq and the tragedy of September 11th, a link that did not and does not exist," he said.
Bush also gave an implicit warning to
Iran, accusing them of supporting radical groups.
Same old lines we've been hearing since this began. Sure seems like there still isn't any real plan in place and now the number of self-sufficient Iraqi battalions has dropped from 3 to just 1. Apparently it's not enough that we have sacrificed our economy and security.