Pres. Bush's speech yesterday.
Excerpts: (emphasis mine)
In the five years since our nation was attacked, we've also learned a great deal about the enemy we face in this war. We've learned about them through videos and audio recordings, and letters and statements they've posted on websites. We've learned about them from captured enemy documents that the terrorists have never meant for us to see. Together, these documents and statements have given us clear insight into the mind of our enemies -- their ideology, their ambitions, and their strategy to defeat us.
We know what the terrorists intend to do because they've told us -- and we need to take their words seriously. So today I'm going to describe -- in the terrorists' own words, what they believe… what they hope to accomplish, and how they intend to accomplish it. I'll discuss how the enemy has adapted in the wake of our sustained offensive against them, and the threat posed by different strains of violent Islamic radicalism. I'll explain the strategy we're pursuing to protect America, by defeating the terrorists on the battlefield, and defeating their hateful ideology in the battle of ideas.
The terrorists who attacked us on September the 11th, 2001, are men without conscience -- but they're not madmen. They kill in the name of a clear and focused ideology, a set of beliefs that are evil, but not insane. These al Qaeda terrorists and those who share their ideology are violent Sunni extremists. They're driven by a radical and perverted vision of Islam that rejects tolerance, crushes all dissent, and justifies the murder of innocent men, women and children in the pursuit of political power. They hope to establish a violent political utopia across the Middle East, which they call a "Caliphate" -- where all would be ruled according to their hateful ideology. Osama bin Laden has called the 9/11 attacks -- in his words -- "a great step towards the unity of Muslims and establishing the Righteous… [Caliphate]."
This caliphate would be a totalitarian Islamic empire encompassing all current and former Muslim lands, stretching from Europe to North Africa, the Middle East, and Southeast Asia. We know this because al Qaeda has told us. About two months ago, the terrorist Zawahiri -- he's al Qaeda's second in command -- declared that al Qaeda intends to impose its rule in "every land that was a home for Islam, from [Spain] to Iraq. He went on to say, "The whole world is an open field for us."
We know what this radical empire would look like in practice, because we saw how the radicals imposed their ideology on the people of Afghanistan. Under the rule of the Taliban and al Qaeda, Afghanistan was a totalitarian nightmare -- a land where women were imprisoned in their homes, men were beaten for missing prayer meetings, girls could not go to school, and children were forbidden the smallest pleasures like flying kites. Religious police roamed the streets, beating and detaining civilians for perceived offenses. Women were publicly whipped. Summary executions were held in Kabul's soccer stadium in front of cheering mobs. And Afghanistan was turned into a launching pad for horrific attacks against America and other parts of the civilized world -- including many Muslim nations.The goal of these Sunni extremists is to remake the entire Muslim world in their radical image.
After the liberation of Afghanistan, coalition forces searching through a terrorist safe house in that country found a copy of the al Qaeda charter. This charter states that "there will be continuing enmity until everyone believes in Allah. We will not meet [the enemy] halfway. There will be no room for dialogue with them." Another document was found in 2000 by British police during an anti-terrorist raid in London -- a grisly al Qaeda manual that includes chapters with titles such as "Guidelines for Beating and Killing Hostages." This manual declares that their vision of Islam "does not… make a truce with unbelief, but rather confronts it." The confrontation… calls for… the dialogue of bullets, the ideals of assassination, bombing, and destruction, and the diplomacy of the cannon and machine gun."
Pres. Bush went on to quote bin Laden in how bin Laden plans to "destroy" us and how in a letter from 2002 to the Taliban leader, Mullah Omar, bin Laden says that al Qaeda intends to "[launch]," in his words, "a media campaign… to create a wedge between the American people and their government."
That might be the one part of his plan that seems to be working.
bin laden sees America as weak. Our past Presidents, both Republican and Democrat seemed to have made bin laden think we have no resolve:
Osama bin Laden has written that the "defeat of... American forces in Beirut" in 1983 is proof America does not have the stomach to stay in the fight. He's declared that "in Somalia… the United States [pulled] out, trailing disappointment, defeat, and failure behind it." And last year, the terrorist Zawahiri declared that Americans "know better than others that there is no hope in victory. The Vietnam specter is closing every outlet."
And Zawahiri has a plan for Iraq:
The terrorist Zawahiri has said that al Qaeda will proceed with "several incremental goals. The first stage: Expel the Americans from Iraq. The second stage: Establish an Islamic authority or amirate, then develop it and support it until it achieves the level of Caliphate… The third stage: Extend the jihad wave to the secular countries neighboring Iraq. And the fourth stage: …the clash with Israel."
I wonder, will the Democrats help with expelling Americans from Iraq?
These are important things to know. I hope we are listening.
Read the whole thing.