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Bush On Iraqi Violence


Attacks by terrorists in Iraq surged during the Muslim holy month of Ramadan. Those attacked with improvised explosive devices, or I-E-D's, include Iraqi police, civilians, and members of the U.S.-led coalition. President George W. Bush says there are reasons for this increase in violence:

"One reason is that coalition and Iraqi forces have been conducting focused operations to bring security to Baghdad. Side-by-side, Iraqi and American forces are operating in the city's most violent areas to disrupt al-Qaida, capture enemy fighters, crack down on I-E-D makers, and break up death squads. As we engage our enemies in their stronghold, these enemies are putting up a tough fight."

Another reason for the increase in violence, says President Bush, is that the terrorists are trying to influence public opinion:

"They have a sophisticated propaganda strategy. . . .They carry video cameras and film their atrocities, and broadcast them on the Internet. They e-mail images and video clips to Middle Eastern cable networks like al-Jazeera."

The coalition's goal in Iraq has not changed, says Mr. Bush. That goal, he says, is victory:

"What is changing are the tactics we use to achieve that goal. Our commanders on the ground are constantly adjusting their approach to stay ahead of the enemy. . . .We have a strategy that allows us to be flexible and to adapt to changing circumstances."

President Bush says Iraq's new leaders "are beginning to take the difficult steps necessary to defeat the enemy." Iraqi prime minister Nouri al-Maliki, says Mr. Bush, "recently met with tribal leaders from Anbar province, who told him they are ready to stand up and fight the terrorists. He's also taken action to clean up the Iraqi national police." Mr. Bush says the U.S. and its coalition allies will help Iraqis "build a free nation that can govern itself, sustain itself, and defend itself."

The preceding was an editorial reflecting the views of the United States Government.

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