President Bush has sought to reassure the nation and the world that the United States is taking steps to protect the country following apparent terrorist attacks in New York and Washington. The president, speaking from a U.S. military base in Louisiana, has vowed to punish those responsible.

Mr. Bush's statement was brief and to the point: "I want to reassure the American people that the full resources of the federal government are working to assist local authorities to save lives and help the victims of these attacks," Mr. Bush said. "Make no mistake, the United States will hunt down and punish those responsible for these cowardly acts."

Mr. Bush said the United States has taken all appropriate security precautions to protect the American people. He said the U.S. military is on high alert, and that the United States has taken security precautions to continue government functions.

The President said he is in constant contact with his national security team and cabinet, and has been touch with world leaders and members of Congress.