White House spokesman Tony Snow commented on a visit that Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki made to Iraqi security forces outside Baghdad:
"It's significant to note that the one thing he [Mr. Maliki] said was that Arabs, Kurds, Christians, Sunni, Shia, and Turkmen should be united with each other to form a country united to defeat terrorism."
Mr. Snow says that the U.S. "understand(s) that those who want Iraq to fail as a democracy will do everything they can":
"Everybody knows that sectarian violence is a problem, and that extremists, especially in the Sunni and Shia camps, are doing everything they can to disrupt it. And we're keenly aware of it. . . .And it's one that Prime Minister Maliki is working with our forces in the field to try to deal with, because he has to."
On his recent visit to the U.S., Mr. Maliki, through an interpreter, told members of the U.S. Congress that a new Iraq is "emerging from the ashes of dictatorship. . . .despite the carnage of extremists":
"What is at stake is nothing less than our freedom and our liberty. Confronting and dealing with this challenge is the responsibility of every liberal democracy that values its freedom."
President George W. Bush says, "The Iraqi people want to succeed. They want to end this violence." Iraqis, he says "are suffering hardships. These terrorists and killers are trying to shake the will of the Iraqi people. But despite many casualties, both civilian and military, the Iraqi people continue to stand for public office, enlist in their security forces, and, through their actions, demonstrate every day that they want to raise their families and live their lives like other free people around the world."
The preceding was an editorial reflecting the views of the United States Government.