Saying, "There is no peace in retreat," President George W. Bush declared the United States will stay the course in Iraq. In his State of the Union speech to the U.S. Congress and the American people, Mr. Bush says the coalition in Iraq has "a clear path to victory":
"First, we're helping Iraqis build an inclusive government, so that old resentments will be eased and the insurgency will be marginalized. Second, we're continuing reconstruction efforts, and helping the Iraqi government to fight corruption and build a modern economy, so all Iraqis can experience the benefits of freedom. And, third, we're striking terrorist targets while we train Iraqi forces that are increasingly capable of defeating the enemy. Iraqis are showing their courage every day, and we are proud to be their allies in the cause of freedom."
President Bush says "the work in Iraq is difficult because the enemy is brutal":
"Their aim is to seize power in Iraq, and use it as a safe haven to launch attacks against America and the world. . . .But that brutality has not stopped the dramatic progress of a new democracy. In less than three years, the nation has gone from dictatorship to liberation, to sovereignty, to a constitution, to national elections. At the same time, our coalition has been relentless in shutting off terrorist infiltration, clearing out insurgent strongholds, and turning over territory to Iraqi security forces. I am confident in our plan for victory. I am confident in the will of the Iraqi people. I am confident in the skill and spirit of our military. Fellow citizens, we are in this fight to win, and we are winning."
"Our coalition has learned from our experience in Iraq," said President Bush. "We've adjusted our military tactics and changed our approach to reconstruction." The course in Iraq is clear. "Our nation," said President Bush, "has only one option: we must keep our word, defeat our enemies, and stand behind the American military in this vital mission."
The preceding was an editorial reflecting the views of the United States Government.