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Germany Offers America "Unlimited Solidarity"

By Jim Garamone
American Forces Press Service

WASHINGTON, Sept. 19, 2001 – Germany is in "unlimited solidarity" with the American people and government and does not rule out any option for combating terrorism, German Foreign Minister Joschka Fischer said following a meeting at the Pentagon today.

Fischer said the shock of the World Trade Center and Pentagon attacks was felt everywhere in Europe. "It's a very emotional reaction, because this is also a criminal, mass-murderous attack on the open society and the way we live," Fischer said. "I think now we should stay together in full solidarity and fight against this murderous terrorism."

He met with Deputy Defense Secretary Paul Wolfowitz. Wolfowitz said the meeting went well and that both men agreed the fight was against more than just one man or one organization.

"We are engaged in a war against terrorism, the terrorist networks, against state support for terrorism," Wolfowitz said. "I think everyone has to look at this problem with completely new eyes and a completely new light after what happened last Tuesday."

The deputy secretary said the United States and its allies in this fight are going into a sustained campaign "which means it's going to be a long series of actions before we achieve success."

All aspects of government must be used in concert for success, he said. "It's a mistake to isolate one form of action -- like law enforcement -- from another -- like military -- from another -- like diplomatic," he said. Past experience demonstrates that countries are more successful when combining resources. Diplomacy backed up by meaningful threats of force is much more effective than diplomacy alone, he said.

Fischer and Wolfowitz agreed that all countries must adopt a political strategy that brings in the hundreds of millions of moderate Moslems who have to be shocked by this barbaric act that people claim to have done in the name of their religion. All must join together to trace and shut down the financial resources of these terrorist networks.

The U.S. military is a part of this integrated strategy. "If we do act militarily, we will do so to support those goals and not simply for the sake of satisfying what is understandably an enormous urge by the American people, and I suppose by all the 60 nations who lost people on Tuesday -- that enormous urge for revenge," Wolfowitz said. "We're after something more than revenge. We're after dealing with and eliminating this threat to civilization."

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