Bush Praises Allies Role in Progress Against Terror
By Donna Miles
American Forces Press Service
WASHINGTON, Mar. 8, 2005 The United States is not alone in the war on terror, and America "is more secure today because dozens of other countries have stepped up to the fight," the commander in chief said at the National Defense University at Fort McNair here today.
"Many governments have awakened to the dangers we share and have begun to take serious action," President Bush said. "Global terror requires a global response."
Bush outlined examples of that global response he said have made America more secure:
- Pakistani forces captured more than 100 extremists last year, including operatives who were planning attacks against the United States;
- Great Britain arrested an al Qaeda operative who had provided detailed casing reports on American targets to senior al Qaeda leaders;
- German authorities arrested extremists who were planning attacks against U.S. and coalition targets in Iraq;
- The Philippines' new antiterrorism task force has helped capture more than a dozen terrorist suspects, including seven members of al Qaeda and affiliated networks;
- Poland is leading the 15-nation Multinational Division Central South in Iraq; and
- Twenty-three nations have sacrificed members of their military in the struggle against terrorists and insurgents in Iraq and Afghanistan.
"Our allies in the war on terror are taking tough decisions, and they're taking risks and they're losing lives," the president said. "These countries have proven themselves trusted friends and reliable allies."
Bush encouraged Congress to pass his proposed Solidarity Initiative "to stand by the countries that are standing by us in the war on terror."
The initiative involves a $400 million request to help strengthen the capabilities of U.S. partners, including those that have deployed troops in Iraq and Afghanistan. In announcing the initiative Feb. 9, the president said it reflects the principle that an investment in a partner for freedom today will help ensure that America will stand united with stronger partners in the future.
During a Feb. 24 visit to Slovakia, Bush promised that the United States would help that country and other nations "standing with America in the war on terror" improve their military forces. By doing so, he told the Slovakians, "we can strengthen our ability to work together in the cause of freedom."