Bush Cites ‘Historic Opportunity’ to Fight Terror, Support Peace
By Donna Miles
American Forces Press Service
WASHINGTON, Jan. 9, 2008 President Bush kicked off his week-long Middle Eastern trip today pledging continued U.S. support to fighting extremism.
Meeting today with Israeli leaders in Jerusalem, the president began a series of consultations on the war on terror to continue in the days ahead in Kuwait, Bahrain, the United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia and Egypt.
The world has a historic opportunity to stand up to enemies of peace and work for peace, Bush said during a joint news conference with Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert.
“We’re in conflict with radicals and extremists who are willing to murder innocent people to achieve a dark vision, and this is an historic opportunity for the world to fight those terrorists,” he said.
Bush said the world is at a crossroads where it can offer an alternative to hate by spreading freedom and a commitment to human rights and human dignity.
Following his meeting with Israeli President Shimon Peres, Bush said he’s making his trip with a clear understanding that “it's vital for the world to fight terrorists, to confront those who would murder the innocent to achieve political objectives.”
Bush said the best way to defeat the ideology of hate that extremists extol is with an ideology of hope. He emphasized his belief “in liberty and the power of democracy and freedom to be transformative” and the need for countries to stand up to threats against it.
“Each of our nations must guard against terror,” Bush said. “We must firmly resist those who murder the innocent to achieve their political objectives. We must recognize that the great ideology based upon liberty is hopeful.”