Secretary of State Colin Powell is asking the international community to help hunt down those responsible for Tuesday's terrorist attacks.
Secretary Powell says it is not just the terrorists who planned the violence who must be brought to justice. He says the Bush administration is calling on its international allies to help identify those nations who might have provided cover or safe haven to this terrorist group.
"We have to make the whole world understand that this is something that we all have to be involved in and not just see it as a discreet response to a single incident," Mr. Powell said. "We'll do that. But we have to realize that terrorism has been around for a very long time, and it is going to take a very long time to root it out. What the President was specifically focusing on last night is that there are nations, there are states, there are organizations that provide havens and these states and organizations cannot be given a free ride any longer."
In a nationwide speech Tuesday night, President Bush said the United States will make no distinction between the terrorists who committed what he called "mass murder" and those who harbor them.
Secretary Powell says the diplomatic response to the violence will focus on assisting investigators to find out who is responsible for the attacks. Once they do, he said President Bush will consider every response, including a military strike.
Mr. Powell says he understands the anger of the more than 90 percent of Americans who say they favor using the military to respond to these attacks, even if it means starting a war.
"We're mad. We were assaulted. But our spirit wasn't assaulted, and our fighting spirit was not assaulted, so we want to respond," he said. "You don't attack America like this and get away with it. So I can assure the American people that if the president is able to get the information pinpointing who it is and where they are and get targetable information, I am quite confident that he will look at every option available to him to respond."
Secretary Powell said he would not speculate on who is responsible for the violence. He defended America's intelligence community saying they have prevented many attacks in the past and may have important information now to help identify those behind Tuesday's violence.