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Coalition Must Be on Offensive Against Terrorists, Rumsfeld Says

By Sgt. Sara Wood, USA
American Forces Press Service

DALLAS, Aug. 3, 2005 – The only way to defeat the multifaceted, adaptive insurgency in the Middle East is to go on the offensive, Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld said here Aug. 2.

Speaking by phone to a meeting of the Dallas Chamber of Commerce, Rumsfeld talked about the diversity of the insurgency and emphasized that the coalition will win what he called a "test of wills."

The insurgency represents a very small minority of the Iraqi population, Rumsfeld said, and does not embody the Muslim faith.

"This is not a war between the United States and the Muslim faith or between Iraq and the Muslim faith," he said. "It is a struggle within the Muslim faith."

Insurgents most often target other Muslims, mostly innocent civilians, he said. Despite this, the Iraqi people continue to take part in the reform of their country and remain optimistic about the future, he said.

"The free people of Iraq and Afghanistan are defying terrorist threats and condemning their violence," he said.

The coalition did not provoke a fight against the terrorists, Rumsfeld said, but it will not give up until freedom is won for Iraq.

"In my view, resolve, not retreat, is what's needed in this war," he said. "Courage, not confession, is called for, and freedom, not tyranny, must be the path that we forge together."

Rumsfeld said he is confident of victory in Iraq, and said that victory will be a tribute to the world leaders who are leading the fight and to the resolve of the American people.

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Donald H. Rumsfeld


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