I have read the excerpt and seen the comic soundbites of Bush II's press briefing on the subject. I also read the transcript of Bush II's Presidential Radio Address and I have to say I agree with some of his comments. See what you think, and try to forget for a moment that it is Bush II's hard head from which these words emanated:
"The National Intelligence Estimate confirms that we are up against a determined and capable enemy. The NIE lists four underlying factors that are fueling the extremist movement: first, long-standing grievances such as corruption, injustice, and a fear of Western domination; second, the jihad in Iraq; third, the slow pace of reform in Muslim nations; and fourth, pervasive anti-Americanism. It concludes that terrorists are exploiting all these factors to further their movement.
Some in Washington have selectively quoted from this document to make the case that by fighting the terrorists in Iraq, we are making our people less secure here at home. This argument buys into the enemy's propaganda that the terrorists attack us because we are provoking them."
That sounds perfectly reasonable to me. Then he goes too far and says "The terrorists are at war against us because they hate everything America stands for." I beg to differ. I think if the President acts in a manner that reflects "everything America stands for" that the US would have far fewer enemies in the world.
Freedom. Democracy. Truth. Self-determination. Free markets. Justice. That is what America purports to stand for.
But from the perspective of anyone outside the deluded administration or blinkered rural electorate, we instead see: Lies. Occupation. Martial law. No due process. No-bid contracts. Theft. Poverty. Despair.
Hard to cultivate allies from such a quagmire.