Tonight, the President of the United States told America and the world what our United States are doing and must continue to do to preserve our way of life. I only hope America was listening... I know our enemies were.
Excerpts from the text of President Bush's address to the nation on the fifth anniversary of the Sept. 11 attacks, as provided by the White House:
On the heroism of Americans: "On 9/11, our nation saw the face of evil. Yet on that awful day, we also witnessed something distinctly American: ordinary citizens rising to the occasion, and responding with extraordinary acts of courage."
On the ongoing terrorist threat: "We face an enemy determined to bring death and suffering into our homes. America did not ask for this war, and every American wishes it were over. So do I. But the war is not over, and it will not be over until either we or the extremists emerge victorious. If we do not defeat these enemies now, we will leave our children to face a Middle East overrun by terrorist states and radical dictators armed with nuclear weapons. We are in a war that will set the course for this new century and determine the destiny of millions across the world."
On what is at stake: "This struggle has been called a clash of civilizations. In truth, it is a struggle for civilization. We are fighting to maintain the way of life enjoyed by free nations. And we are fighting for the possibility that good and decent people across the Middle East can raise up societies based on freedom, and tolerance, and personal dignity."
On democratic reform in the Middle East: "By standing with democratic leaders and reformers, by giving voice to the hopes of decent men and women, we are offering a path away from radicalism. And we are enlisting the most powerful force for peace and moderation in the Middle East: The desire of millions to be free."
On working together to win the war on terror: "Our nation has endured trials, and we face a difficult road ahead. Winning this war will require the determined efforts of a unified country. So we must put aside our differences, and work together to meet the test that history has given us. We will defeat our enemies, we will protect our people, and we will lead the 21st century into a shining age of human liberty."
Source: The Associated Press
Our Nation has made great sacrifices in the last few years, but it hasn't been without great successes. I appreciated the President's reference to the generations that have come before us and met victory despite extraordinary obstacles. We now stand at the brink of American survival or suffocation. Our preservation is ours to lose. If America is fragile it is not because of our enemies, but because of the apathetic and complacent among us. We must stay the course. We must persevere. The life of the free world depends on it.