France is sending two-thousand troops to Lebanon. President George W. Bush says he "applaud[s] the decision of France, as well as the significant pledges from Italy and our other important allies."
U-N Security Council Resolution seventeen-zero-one authorizes the deployment of an international force of up to fifteen-thousand to ensure the cessation of hostilities between Hezbollah terrorists and Israel. Mr. Bush says the United States is working with the United Nations and others "to ensure the rapid deployment of this force to help Lebanon's legitimate armed forces restore the sovereignty of its democratic government throughout the country and stop Hezbollah from acting as a state within a state." The U.S., says President Bush, will do its part:
"We will assist a new international force with logistic support, command and control, communications and intelligence."
The United States is providing two-hundred-thirty-million dollars worth of aid to help meet the needs of the Lebanese people. That includes an immediate contribution of food, blankets, shelter, and emergency medical services.
The United States "is making a long-term commitment to help the people of Lebanon," says Mr. Bush, "because the U.S. believes every person deserves to live in a free, open society that respects the rights of all the people. We reject the killing of innocents to achieve a radical and violent agenda." "The terrorists and their state sponsors, Iran and Syria, have a much darker vision," says Mr. Bush. "They're working to thwart the efforts of the Lebanese people to break from foreign domination and build their own democratic future. The terrorists and their sponsors are not going to succeed."
The international community must move quickly to implement fully U-N Security Council Resolution seventeen-zero-one. The price of failure in this case is to condemn the people of Lebanon and Israel to further violence and tragedy.
The preceding was an editorial reflecting the views of the United States Government.