We intend to convince the Communists that we cannot be defeated by force of arms or by superior power. They are not easily convinced. In recent months they have greatly increased their fighting forces and their attacks and the number of incidents. I have asked the Commanding General, General [William C.] Westmoreland, what more he needs to meet this mounting aggression. He has told me. We will meet his needs.
There are some who feel like -- that the conditions are such that they can attack us there. My answer is, bring them on.
As late as May, the Pentagon predicted that U.S. troop levels would fall to 30,000 by September.
On Monday, a senior official with U.S. Central Command said that the return home of about 24,000 U.S. troops who were scheduled to leave in the next few weeks would be delayed as their replacements arrive. Central Command's responsibility includes the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.
Mr. Bush appeared eager on Monday to dispel any thought that the new wave of attacks on American forces, in which Shiites as well as Sunnis have now joined, would shake his resolve. "If they think that we're not sincere about staying the course, many people will not continue to take a risk toward — take the risk toward freedom and democracy," he told reporters.
Gen. John P. Abizaid, the senior commander in the Middle East, has asked for contingency plans for increasing the number of troops in Iraq. No decision has been made to supplement the 134,000 troops now there, and White House officials said it was unclear whether such a move would help the situation.
I do not find it easy to send the flower of our youth, our finest young men, into battle. I have spoken to you today of the divisions and the forces and the battalions and the units. But I know them all, every one. I have seen them in thousand streets, of a hundred towns, in every State in this Union - working and laughing and building, and filled with hope and life. I think that I know, too, how their mothers weep and how their families sorrow. This is the most agonizing and the most painful duty of your President...I do not want to see all those hopes and all those dreams of so many people for so many years drowned in the wasteful ravages of cruel wars.
We need a change. November can't come too soon.
Best New Blog finalist - 2003 Koufax Awards
A non-violent, counter-dominant, left-liberal, possibly charismatic, quasi anarcho-libertarian Quaker's take on politics, volleyball, and other esoterica.
Lo alecha ha-m'lacha ligmor, v'lo atah ben chorin l'hibateyl mimenah.