News

Bush Preparing for Key Iraq Report

Multimedia

Audio

President Bush is calling on Americans to have patience with the war in Iraq as he works to restore public support by focusing on the the conflict's broader context in history rather than the daily reporting of casualties. As VOA's Scott Stearns reports, the Bush administration's effort comes ahead of a critical report to Congress that is expected to trigger renewed debate about when U.S. troops should withdraw from Iraq.

Counselor to the president Ed Gillespie says the White House is providing context for the debate that will follow the release of the September 15 report to Congress on the progress of the war.

President Bush is anchoring that campaign with two key speeches to military veterans. The first was Wednesday's address to the Veterans of Foreign Wars in which he compared the war in Iraq to past U.S. military intervention in Asia.

The second will be the president's appearance Tuesday before the American Legion. Gillespie says Mr. Bush will use that speech to put the war in Iraq in the regional context of the Middle East and link security at home with the defeat of extremists abroad.

In his speech Wednesday, the president again called for patience in Iraq.

"Prevailing in this struggle is essential to our future as a nation," he said. "And the question now that comes before us is this: Will today's generation of Americans resist the allure of retreat, and will we do in the Middle East what the veterans in this room did in Asia?"

Next month's report is to assess the impact of the president's decision to send more troops to Iraq, and he is expected to use its findings to counter opposition calls for a timetable to bring the troops home.

The president's report is expected to include some military successes. That is already further dividing opposition Democrats between those who want troops to start coming home now and those who see some progress on the ground.

The party's leading presidential contender, Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton, also spoke this week to the veterans group.

"We've begun to change tactics in Iraq, and in some areas, particularly in al-Anbar province, it is working," she said. "We are just years too late changing our tactics. We can't ever let that happen again. We can't be fighting the last war. We have to be preparing to fight the new war. And this new war requires different tactics and strategies."

In his remarks to the veterans' group, President Bush made clear he will use military progress in Iraq to challenge political opponents.

"Our troops are seeing the progress that is being made on the ground," he noted. "And as they take the initiative from the enemy, they have a question: Will their elected leaders in Washington pull the rug out from under them, just as they're gaining momentum and changing the dynamic on the ground in Iraq?"

Before sending its Iraq report to Congress, the White House public outreach campaign will include appearances by Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, Defense Secretary Robert Gates, and the main contributors to the report - U.S. Ambassador to Iraq Ryan Crocker and the senior U.S. commander in Iraq, General David Petraeus.

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Olympics Construction Scars Sacred Korean Mountaini
X
July 02, 2015 4:10 AM
Environmentalists in South Korea are protesting a Winter Olympics construction project to build a ski slope through a 500-year-old protected forest. Brian Padden reports that although there is strong national support for hosting the 2018 Pyeongchang Winter Olympics, there are growing public concerns over the costs and possible ecological damage at the revered mountain.
Video

Video Olympics Construction Scars Sacred Korean Mountain

Environmentalists in South Korea are protesting a Winter Olympics construction project to build a ski slope through a 500-year-old protected forest. Brian Padden reports that although there is strong national support for hosting the 2018 Pyeongchang Winter Olympics, there are growing public concerns over the costs and possible ecological damage at the revered mountain.
Video

Video Xenophobia Victims in South Africa Flee Violence, Then Return

Many Malawians fled South Africa early this year after xenophobic attacks on African immigrants. But many quickly found life was no better at home and have returned to South Africa – often illegally and without jobs, and facing the tough task of having to start over. Lameck Masina and Anita Powell file from Johannesburg.
Video

Video Family of American Marine Calls for Release From Iranian Prison

As the crowd of journalists covering the Iran talks swells, so too do the opportunities for media coverage.  Hoping to catch the attention of high-level diplomats, the family of American-Iranian marine Amir Hekmati is in Vienna, pleading for his release from an Iranian prison after nearly 4 years.  VOA’s Heather Murdock reports from Vienna.
Video

Video UK Holds Terror Drill as MPs Mull Tunisia Response

After pledging a tough response to last Friday’s terror attack in Tunisia, which came just days before the 10th anniversary of the bomb attacks on London’s transport network, British security services are shifting their focus to overseas counter-terror operations. VOA's Henry Ridgwell has more.
Video

Video Obama on Cuba: This is What Change Looks Like

President Barack Obama says the United States will soon reopen its embassy in Cuba for the first time since 1961, ending a half-century of isolation. VOA White House correspondent Luis Ramirez reports.
Video

Video Hate Groups Spread Influence Via Internet

Hate groups of various kinds are using the Internet for propaganda and recruitment, and a Jewish human rights organization that monitors these groups, the Simon Wiesenthal Center, says their influence is growing. The messages are different, but the calls to hatred or violence are similar. VOA's Mike O’Sullivan reports.
Video

Video US Silica Sand Mining Surge Worries Illinois Residents, Businesses

Increased domestic U.S. oil and gas production, thanks to advances known as “fracking,” has created a boom for other industries supporting that extraction. Demand for silica sand, used in fracking, could triple over the next five years. In the Midwest state of Illinois, people living near the mines are worried about how increased silica sand mining will affect their businesses and their health. VOA’s Kane Farabaugh has more in this first of a series of reports.
Video

Video Blind Somali Journalist Defies Odds in Mogadishu

Despite improving security in the last few years, Somalia remains one of the most dangerous countries to be a journalist – even more so for someone who cannot see. Abdulaziz Billow has the story of journalist Abdifatah Hassan Kalgacal, who has been reporting from the Somali capital for the last decade despite being blind.
Video

Video Texas Defies Same-Sex Marriage Ruling

Texas state officials have criticized the US Supreme Court decision giving same-sex couples the right to marry nationwide. The attorney general of Texas says last week's decision did not overrule constitutional "rights of religious liberty," and therefore officials performing wedding services can refuse to perform them for same-sex couples if it is against their religious beliefs. Zlatica Hoke reports on the controversy.
Video

Video Rabbi Hits Road to Heal Jewish-Muslim Relations in France

France is on high alert after last week's terrorist attack near the city Lyon, just six months after deadly Paris shootings. The attack have added new tensions to relations between French Jews and Muslims. France’s Jewish and Muslim communities also share a common heritage, though, and as far as one French rabbi is concerned, they are destined to be friends. From the Paris suburb of La Courneuve, Lisa Bryant reports about Rabbi Michel Serfaty and his friendship bus.
Video

Video Saudi Leaks Expose ‘Checkbook Diplomacy’ In Battle With Iran

Saudi Arabia’s willingness to wield its oil money on the global diplomatic stage appears to have been laid bare, after the website WikiLeaks published tens of thousands of leaked cables from Riyadh’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs. VOA's Henry Ridgwell reports.
Video

Video In Kenya, Police Said to Shoot First, Ask Questions Later

An organization that documents torture and extrajudicial killings says Kenyan police were responsible for 1,252 shooting deaths in five cities, including Nairobi, between 2009 and 2014, representing 67 percent of all gun deaths in the areas reviewed. Gabe Joselow has more from Nairobi.

VOA Blogs