September 7th, 2006 10:52 EST
Bush Says U.S. Security Has Improved Since September 11, 2001
Washington -- President Bush said the United States is safer than it was at the time of the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks on New York and Washington, and is “winning the War on Terror” through vigilance, determination and courage.
Speaking in Marietta, Georgia, September 7 in his fourth in a series of speeches on the War on Terror, Bush said the United States has “learned the lessons” of September 11, 2001.
“[W]e have addressed the gaps in our defenses exposed by that attack. We've gone on the offense against our enemies and transformed former adversaries into allies. We have put in place the institutions needed to win this war,” he said.
In the offensive against terrorist organizations such as al-Qaida, the president said the United States and its allies are using financial, diplomatic and intelligence tools, as well as military tools, to disrupt the terrorists’ day-to-day operations.
“Because we're on the offensive, it's more difficult for al-Qaida to transfer money through the international banking system. Because we're on the offense, al-Qaida can no longer communicate openly without fear of destruction. And because we're on the offense, al-Qaida can no longer move widely without fearing for their lives,” he said.
Bush said one of the lessons from the 2001 attacks is the need to keep “steady pressure, unrelenting pressure, on al-Qaida and its associates.”
The United States and its allies have kept terrorist forces from achieving their key goal of overthrowing governments across the broader Middle East in order to seize control. On the contrary, two of their targets, Pakistan and Saudi Arabia, are among the United States’ “most valuable allies in the War on Terror,” and former state sponsors of terror such as Afghanistan and Iraq now are helping fight terrorism as democratic nations.
More than 90 nations are united in the fight against terrorism, “to dry up their funds, to stop their plots and to bring them to justice,” a force Bush described as “the largest coalition in the history of warfare.”
To combat radicalism, the United States is supporting democratic leaders and reformers across the broader Middle East. “We're supporting the voices of tolerance and moderation in the Muslim world. We're standing with mothers and fathers in every culture who want to see their children grow up in a caring and peaceful world,” the president said.
By changing conditions that encourage radicalism and hatred and replacing “violent dictatorships with peaceful democracies,” the United States and its allies will make the world more secure, Bush said.
A transcript of the president’s remarks is available on the White House Web site, as is a related fact sheet.
(Distributed by the Bureau of International Information Programs, U.S. Department of State. Web site: http://usinfo.state.gov)
Sop: White House