Today, in Washington, before a meeting of the Associated General Contractors of America.
There’s Other Things
There’s other things we can do in Washington.
He Accepts Polls
It’s interesting, they run polls — and I accept that — and it said, you know, we don’t approve of what’s happening in Iraq. That was what the poll said last fall and winter, you know.
Did I Mention Early Stages?
Last week, General Petraeus came to Washington, and he updated me and he updated the Congress on the early stages of this new strategy — and I repeat, early stages. He reminded us that not all the reinforcements he’d requested have arrived, that it’s going to be at least until the end of this summer that he will know whether or not the new strategy has achieved successes. And that means the strategy is in early stages.
This Is The Areas
The strategy is also being carried out in what’s called surrounding belts. This is the areas that kind of arc around the capital, and it’s a place where there’s been a lot of planning and plotting and attacking.
Shit For Brains
And so now we’ve got American troops are now living and working in small neighborhood posts called joint security stations. This is what’s fundamentally different from the strategy.
No Interest In Nonviolence
It doesn’t generate much attention when violence does not happen.
Did I Mention It’s Not Fully Implemented?
Interestingly enough, General Petraeus reported that in his short time he’s been there, and in the short time that this plan is being implemented — remember, it’s not fully implemented: three of the brigades are present, are in place; the fourth brigade has just moved into Baghdad and it will be in place relatively soon, and the fifth is on its way — that in spite of the fact that we haven’t fully implemented the plan, the number of sectarian murders in Baghdad has dropped substantially.
There’s Still Issues
In other words, as we report progress, it’s very important for us to make sure that the American people understand there’s still issues, there’s still challenges. Illegal armed groups need to be dealt with, and we are.
Deadly Suicide Bombers Carried Out By Foreign Terrorists
The primary reason for the high level of violence is this: al Qaeda has ratcheted up its campaign of high-profile attacks, including deadly suicide bombers carried out by foreign terrorists.
The Group That Plot And Planned
Al Qaeda is the group that plot and planned and trained killers to come and kill people on our soil.
Fear Of The CW Words
The recent attacks are not the revenge killings that some have called a civil war. They are a systematic assault on the entire nation.
Did I Mention It’s An Al Qaeda Document?
According to a captured al Qaeda document — in other words, according to what al Qaeda has said — and by the way, in a war to protect America, it’s really important to take the words of the enemy very seriously — according to this document, the terrorists’ goal is to take over Anbar and make it their home base in Iraq. According to the document we captured — that is a document from al Qaeda, the same people that attacked us in America — their objective is to find safe haven in this part of Iraq.
You have to know in advance that somebody’s getting ready to slide into society and kill innocent in order to achieve an objective.
And so Condoleezza Rice — I talked to her last night on her way out of town — is heading over to Egypt. And she’s going to represent our country — and she represents it well, by the way — and will do so in Egypt.
What Iraq’s Leaders Have Got To Do
Iraq’s leaders still have got a lot to do, don’t get me wrong.
Can’t Help Himself
General Petraeus is beginning to carry out the strategy, yet the Democrat leaders in Congress have chosen this time to try to force a precipitous withdrawal.
You can attack a nation several ways. One, you can get 19 kids to fly airplanes into buildings, or you can gain control of something a country needs and deny that country access to that, in this case, oil, and run the price of oil up, all attempting to inflict serious economic damage.
Whether you are a Republican or Democrat, there is no benefit in allowing a widespread humanitarian nightmare to consume Iraq.
Families Of The Fallen
In other words, it is an interesting spirit amongst the — now, listen, I visit with some who say, get out; I wish you hadn’t have done this in the first place.
Those Who Have Lost A Loved One Will Not Die In Vain
In order for me to do my part to make sure your second cousin and anybody else who lost a loved one in Iraq didn’t die in vain, is to continue to take the case to the American people why what happens in Iraq matters to them.
What They Got To Do
And first of all, they got to fund the troops, because the longer they wait in funding the troops, it’s going to hurt our military.
It’s just a — I can’t answer your question beyond that people just need to be — the best messenger, by the way, for us is David Petraeus, because he’s actually there in Baghdad, and Ryan Crocker who is actually — he’s the ambassador who is there in Baghdad.
And the definition of success as I described is sectarian violence down. Success is not, no violence. There are parts of our own country that have got a certain level of violence to it.
An Interesting Idea Ignored
I liked what James A. Baker and Lee Hamilton reported back after a serious investigation of Iraq. I liked their ideas. And it’s something that we should seriously consider. And their idea was, is that at some point in time, it makes sense to have a U.S. presence configured this way, embedded with Iraqi forces, training Iraqi forces, over-the-horizon presence to provide enough security to know that people will have help if they need it, but put the — more onus on a sovereign government of Iraq, a presence to keep the territorial integrity of Iraq intact, a special ops presence to go after these killers who have got their intentions on America. It’s an interesting idea.
And as you know, my position is clear — I’m the commander guy.
The One Strategy That Worked
The first questi
on, our reconstruction strategy initially was to do big projects, and then those big projects would be destroyed by the enemy.
So therefore we restructured, and we said that the best way to help the Iraq — remember, Iraq has now put out $10 billion of their own money. So, step one, they’re a sovereign government, and if we want to do business with Iraq, we can figure out how you can go do it — business with Iraq.
Groups Not Different
Now we’re giving reconstruction money to two different groups — two groups of people, not different — two groups.
Laughing At Him, Not With Him
And that’s how we’re using — I’m not exactly sure what a proper role could be for you. The good news is I can find out pretty quick — (laughter) — “ly,” quickly. (Laughter.)
Stay On The Pressure
Today, we will continue to stay on the pressure.
So we’re pressuring. And I’m — I would hope whoever takes my place would have that same sense of urgency. You know, no matter what you may be hearing, it’s — people, when they get in that Oval Office and take a look at the realities of the world will, I suspect, subscribe to the — that we just need to be not only vigilant, but pressuring.
The Debate Within The Republican Party
You know, the interesting debate that we’re now confronted with is this ideological debate about whether or not it’s worth it to spread freedom. Should we spread freedom?
Thousands Of US Soldiers Died On The Korean Peninsula Shortly Before 1950
Shortly before 1950, I mentioned, thousands of U.S. citizens had died in a war with Japan, Mao Zedong was beginning an ascendancy where the form of government was repressed and that no such thing as a marketplace — was repressive, and there was no such thing as a marketplace. And Korea had just been — the Peninsula of Korea had just been torn asunder, where thousands of U.S. soldiers had died, as well.