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President Bush Vows to Punish Terrorists - 2001-09-12

President Bush says the people responsible for Tuesday's terrorist attacks in the United States will be punished, no matter where they are hiding. The president is asking Congress to approve additional money to respond to the violence.

The president met with his national security team in the White House cabinet room, reviewing the latest information about the investigation into the attacks and efforts to rescue those who might still be alive in the rubble of the World Trade Center.

If his nationwide address Tuesday night was one of consolation to the victims, his message Wednesday morning was a warning to the terrorists. "The deliberate and deadly attacks which were carried out yesterday against our country were more than acts of terror," he said. "They were acts of war. This will require a country to unite in steadfast determination and resolve. Freedom and democracy are under attack. The American people need to know we are facing a different enemy than we have ever faced."

The president says this enemy hides in shadows and has no regard for human life. "This is an enemy who preys on innocent and unsuspecting people then runs for cover," said President Bush. "But it won't be able to run for cover forever. This is an enemy that tries to hide, but it won't be able to hide forever. This is an enemy that thinks its harbors are safe, but they won't be safe forever. This enemy attacked not just our people, but all freedom loving people everywhere in the world. The United States of America will use all our resources to conquer this enemy."

President Bush says his administration will be patient, focused, and steadfast in its determination to win the fight against terrorism. He says the battle will take time and resolve, but make no mistake about it, he says, we will win.

Government offices opened for business Wednesday, but the president says it is not business as usual with all agencies under hightened security alert. As the country goes forward, Mr. Bush says Americans must be keenly aware of the threats to the country without allowing this enemy to win the war by changing the way of life in the United States or restricting freedom.

The president asked Congress for emergency funding authority to protect national security and help with the recovery effort.