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Rumsfeld: War on Terror Far from Over as 9/11 Anniversary Nears - 2004-09-07

With the approach of the third anniversary of the September 11 attacks in the United States, Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld is once again warning the war on terrorism is far from over.

As the world approaches another anniversary of the September 11 attacks, Secretary Rumsfeld Tuesday pointed to progress in the war on terrorism, noting the capture of Saddam Hussein, the fall of the Taleban and upcoming elections set for both Iraq and Afghanistan.

"Our enemies have underestimated our country, our coalition; they have failed to understand the character of our people and they certainly misread our commander in chief," he said.

Mr. Rumsfeld told reporters the war on terrorism is far from over, as events in Russia last week showed once again.

"There are really no free passes in this struggle, this war," he said. "There are no free passes for countries, there are no free passes for individuals. And for that reason, the civilized world has to stay on the offensive and that's exactly what the coalition is doing."

With the number of American servicemen killed in Iraq reported to be now topping 1,000, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, General Richard Myers, says the recent spike in insurgent attacks shows those seeking to drive coalition forces out of the country have become more sophisticated.

U.S. officials say they expect attacks to increase in Iraq and Afghanistan as both countries move closer to elections.