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Wolfowitz Responds to Attack on Baghdad Hotel


Wolfowitz Responds to Attack on Baghdad Hotel

Deputy secretary was in Al Rasheed Hotel at time it was hit

Deputy Secretary of Defense Paul Wolfowitz says the October 26 terrorist attacks on the Al Rasheed Hotel in Baghdad will not deter the coalition from completing its mission, "which is to help the Iraqi people free themselves from the type of criminals who did this and to protect the American people from this kind of terrorism."

"The criminals who are trying to de-stabilize this country abused and tortured Iraq for 35 years and we have ended that mass oppression. There are few who refuse to accept the reality for a new and free Iraq. We will be unrelenting in our pursuit of them," he said.

According to the Department of Defense, Wolfowitz was on the 12th floor of the hotel when it was hit by rocket-propelled grenades, but he was unhurt in the attack.

Following is a transcript of Wolfowitz's remarks, as released by the Department of Defense:

United States Department of Defense
Deputy Secretary of Defense Paul Wolfowitz
Sunday, October 26, 2003

Deputy Secretary Wolfowitz Remarks on the Attacks on Al Rasheed Hotel

DEPSECDEF WOLFOWITZ: Good morning, Gen. Sanchez will arrange a briefing when the details of this incident are better confirmed. I just wanted to make a short statement.

This terrorist act will not deter us from completing our mission, which is to help the Iraqi people free themselves from the type of criminals who did this and to protect the American people from this kind of terrorism.

The Americans who are here doing this job civilian as well as military are heroes, and we want to express our profound sympathy to the victims of this attack.

The criminals who are trying to de-stabilize this country abused and tortured Iraq for 35 years and we have ended that mass oppression. There are few who refuse to accept the reality for a new and free Iraq. We will be unrelenting in our pursuit of them.

As the President has said, we're taking this fight to the enemy. We're bringing in additional international support and most important of all we have steadily growing numbers of Iraqi's fighting alongside us, for a free Iraq. We are getting the job done despite the desperate acts of a dying regime of criminals.

Thank you, I guess I could take a question or two.


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