President Bush has been holding the hard line on reforming Iraq as hit-and-run attacks on US military personnel continues while other units attempt to smoke out Saddam loyalists.
"These groups believe they have found an opportunity to harm America, to shake our resolve in the war on terror and to cause us to leave Iraq before freedom is fully established," Bush said during a White House re-enlistment ceremony for service members. "They are wrong, and they will not succeed."
The president said those threatening order would "face ruin just as surely as the regime they once served." He said the rebuilding of Iraq will be a "massive and long-term undertaking."
The most important thing that the US must do is hold strong against these attacks. The attacks are designed to weaken US resolve through a slow process of attrition. However, if efforts to restore self-governance to Iraq continue unabated the will of the attackers will be reduced.
The usual suspects are already calling the Iraqi reconstruction a "quagmire". Such comparisons to Vietnam are facile – the attackers do not have the kind of numbers that the NVA had, and their bases of support in Syria and Iran are also feeling increased pressure. Moreover, the current US leadership will not be bowed by terrorist acts against coalition troops. The last remains of the Ba’ath Party will be found and brought to justice. Order will be restored to Iraq. It will be a long and difficult process, and it will require far more than a few months. However, the Bush Administration and American troops are committed to finishing the job. Now is not a time for recrimination and fear, but absolute commitment to a free and democratic Iraq.