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Cablegate: Tfiz01 Remarks by the President

O 200728Z MAR 03
FM SECSTATE WASHDC
TO ALL DIPLOMATIC AND CONSULAR POSTS IMMEDIATE
SPECIAL EMBASSY PROGRAM IMMEDIATE
AMEMBASSY DUSHANBE IMMEDIATE
AMEMBASSY KABUL IMMEDIATE
AMEMBASSY KHARTOUM IMMEDIATE

UNCLAS STATE 072939


E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: AEMR AMGT ASEC CASC KPAO OIIP PREL PTER IZ
SUBJECT: TFIZ01 REMARKS BY THE PRESIDENT

REF: REMARKS BY THE PRESIDENT IN ADDRESS TO THE NATION 19
MARCH 2003


1. THE FOLLOWING TEXT IS A TRANSCRIPT OF THE PRESIDENT'S
REMARKS TO THE AMERICAN PEOPLE AND MAY BE USED AS TALKING
POINTS WHEN DISCUSSING THE MILITARY ACTION IN IRAQ THAT
BEGAN 19 MARCH 2003.

2. BEGIN TRANSCRIPT: THE PRESIDENT: MY FELLOW CITIZENS,
AT THIS HOUR, AMERICAN AND COALITION FORCES ARE IN THE
EARLY STAGES OF MILITARY OPERATIONS TO DISARM IRAQ, TO
FREE ITS PEOPLE AND TO DEFEND THE WORLD FROM GRAVE DANGER.

ON MY ORDERS, COALITION FORCES HAVE BEGUN STRIKING
SELECTED TARGETS OF MILITARY IMPORTANCE TO UNDERMINE
SADDAM HUSSEIN'S ABILITY TO WAGE WAR. THESE ARE OPENING
STAGES OF WHAT WILL BE A BROAD AND CONCERTED CAMPAIGN.
MORE THAN 35 COUNTRIES ARE GIVING CRUCIAL SUPPORT --
FROM THE USE OF NAVAL AND AIR BASES, TO HELP WITH
INTELLIGENCE AND LOGISTICS, TO THE DEPLOYMENT OF COMBAT
UNITS. EVERY NATION IN THIS COALITION HAS CHOSEN TO BEAR
THE DUTY AND SHARE THE HONOR OF SERVING IN OUR COMMON
DEFENSE.

TO ALL THE MEN AND WOMEN OF THE UNITED STATES ARMED FORCES
NOW IN THE MIDDLE EAST, THE PEACE OF A TROUBLED WORLD AND
THE HOPES OF AN OPPRESSED PEOPLE NOW DEPEND ON YOU. THAT
TRUST IS WELL PLACED.

THE ENEMIES YOU CONFRONT WILL COME TO KNOW YOUR SKILL AND
BRAVERY. THE PEOPLE YOU LIBERATE WILL WITNESS THE
HONORABLE AND DECENT SPIRIT OF THE AMERICAN MILITARY. IN
THIS CONFLICT, AMERICA FACES AN ENEMY WHO HAS NO REGARD
FOR CONVENTIONS OF WAR OR RULES OF MORALITY. SADDAM
HUSSEIN HAS PLACED IRAQI TROOPS AND EQUIPMENT IN CIVILIAN
AREAS, ATTEMPTING TO USE INNOCENT MEN, WOMEN AND CHILDREN
AS SHIELDS FOR HIS OWN MILITARY -- A FINAL ATROCITY
AGAINST HIS PEOPLE.

I WANT AMERICANS AND ALL THE WORLD TO KNOW THAT COALITION
FORCES WILL MAKE EVERY EFFORT TO SPARE INNOCENT CIVILIANS
FROM HARM. A CAMPAIGN ON THE HARSH TERRAIN OF A NATION AS
LARGE AS CALIFORNIA COULD BE LONGER AND MORE DIFFICULT
THAN SOME PREDICT. AND HELPING IRAQIS ACHIEVE A UNITED,
STABLE AND FREE COUNTRY WILL REQUIRE OUR SUSTAINED
COMMITMENT.

WE COME TO IRAQ WITH RESPECT FOR ITS CITIZENS, FOR THEIR
GREAT CIVILIZATION AND FOR THE RELIGIOUS FAITHS THEY
PRACTICE. WE HAVE NO AMBITION IN IRAQ, EXCEPT TO REMOVE A
THREAT AND RESTORE CONTROL OF THAT COUNTRY TO ITS OWN
PEOPLE.

I KNOW THAT THE FAMILIES OF OUR MILITARY ARE PRAYING THAT
ALL THOSE WHO SERVE WILL RETURN SAFELY AND SOON. MILLIONS
OF AMERICANS ARE PRAYING WITH YOU FOR THE SAFETY OF YOUR
LOVED ONES AND FOR THE PROTECTION OF THE INNOCENT. FOR
YOUR SACRIFICE, YOU HAVE THE GRATITUDE AND RESPECT OF THE
AMERICAN PEOPLE. AND YOU CAN KNOW THAT OUR FORCES WILL BE
COMING HOME AS SOON AS THEIR WORK IS DONE.

OUR NATION ENTERS THIS CONFLICT RELUCTANTLY -- YET, OUR
PURPOSE IS SURE. THE PEOPLE OF THE UNITED STATES AND OUR
FRIENDS AND ALLIES WILL NOT LIVE AT THE MERCY OF AN OUTLAW
REGIME THAT THREATENS THE PEACE WITH WEAPONS OF MASS
MURDER. WE WILL MEET THAT THREAT NOW, WITH OUR ARMY, AIR
FORCE, NAVY, COAST GUARD AND MARINES, SO THAT WE DO NOT
HAVE TO MEET IT LATER WITH ARMIES OF FIRE FIGHTERS AND
POLICE AND DOCTORS ON THE STREETS OF OUR CITIES.

NOW THAT CONFLICT HAS COME, THE ONLY WAY TO LIMIT ITS
DURATION IS TO APPLY DECISIVE FORCE. AND I ASSURE YOU,
THIS WILL NOT BE A CAMPAIGN OF HALF MEASURES, AND WE WILL
ACCEPT NO OUTCOME BUT VICTORY.

MY FELLOW CITIZENS, THE DANGERS TO OUR COUNTRY AND THE
WORLD WILL BE OVERCOME. WE WILL PASS THROUGH THIS TIME OF
PERIL AND CARRY ON THE WORK OF PEACE. WE WILL DEFEND OUR
FREEDOM. WE WILL BRING FREEDOM TO OTHERS AND WE WILL
PREVAIL.

MAY GOD BLESS OUR COUNTRY AND ALL WHO DEFEND HER. END
TRANSCRIPT.

3. MINIMIZE CONSIDERED.


POWELL

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