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Monday, May 24, 2004

President Bush's Speech

I just watched the President's speech and I think that he said what was needed to be said. He gave a definite timetable and a plan for how sovereignty is going to be transferred to the Iraqi people and a new government set up. He also spent a lot of time talking about training an Iraqi Army and Police force, acknowledging that some units had not performed well and saying we had learned from those mistakes. In the final analysis, we can only do so much; the success or failure of this endeavor will rest on the shoulders of the Iraqi people themselves. As sovereignty is transferred and the Iraqi people increasingly come to believe that they can have a government of their own I am confident that they will step up to the plate and establish a free and just society. He also mentioned that the United States will build a new maximum security prison and tear down Abu Ghraib. I think this is a good idea. Abu Ghraib will always be a symbol of torture and brutality. Finally he contrasted the vision of our enemies: death, destruction, tyranny and oppression, with our vision: freedom, human rights, and progress. Our vision is the stronger, if we only have the will to face down evil. Full Text of Speech here A few of my favorite lines:

The rise of a free and self-governing Iraq will deny terrorists a base of operation, discredit their narrow ideology, and give momentum to reformers across the region. This will be a decisive blow to terrorism at the heart of its power, and a victory for the security of America and the civilized world. There's likely to be more violence before the transfer of sovereignty, and after the transfer of sovereignty. The terrorists and Saddam loyalists would rather see many Iraqis die than have any live in freedom. But terrorists will not determine the future of Iraq. Our actions, too, are guided by a vision. We believe that freedom can advance and change lives in the greater Middle East, as it has advanced and changed lives in Asia, and Latin America, and Eastern Europe, and Africa. We believe it is a tragedy of history that in the Middle East -- which gave the world great gifts of law and science and faith -- so many have been held back by lawless tyranny and fanaticism. We believe that when all Middle Eastern peoples are finally allowed to live and think and work and worship as free men and women, they will reclaim the greatness of their own heritage. And when that day comes, the bitterness and burning hatreds that feed terrorism will fade and die away. America and all the world will be safer when hope has returned to the Middle East.


Blogger Aric said...

Why must this Nation hazard its ease, and its interest, and its power for the sake of a people so far away?

We fight because we must fight if we are to live in a world where every country can shape its own destiny. And only in such a world will our own freedom be finally secure.

This kind of world will never be built by bombs or bullets. Yet the infirmities of man are such that force must often precede reason, and the waste of war, the works of peace.

We wish that this were not so. But we must deal with the world as it is, if it is ever to be as we wish.

-- President Lyndon Johnson: Address at Johns Hopkins University: "Peace Without Conquest" April 7, 1965

5/24/2004 08:38:00 PM  

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