Open

Coming up

Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

MEDIAWATCH

Netanyahu deletes tweet featuring photo of James Foley

Read more

THE WORLD THIS WEEK

The World This Week - 22 August 2014 (part 2)

Read more

THE WORLD THIS WEEK

The World This Week - 22 August 2014

Read more

FRANCE IN FOCUS

FRANCE IN FOCUS

Read more

FOCUS

Lifting the veil over China's air pollution

Read more

ENCORE!

Tango Takeover in Paris

Read more

WEB NEWS

Calls for ISIS media blackout after execution of James Foley

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

'Steely resolve of reporters exploited by pared-down employers'

Read more

BUSINESS DAILY

US judge calls Argentina bond swap offer illegal

Read more

  • Merkel in Ukraine as Russian convoy marks ‘dangerous escalation’

    Read more

  • US brands journalist’s beheading a ‘terrorist attack’

    Read more

  • Europe launches navigation satellites to rival GPS

    Read more

  • Philippines to repatriate UN troops in Liberia over Ebola fears

    Read more

  • Besieged by problems, Hollande faces unhappy return from summer holidays

    Read more

  • Rights group sues US government over ‘deportation mill’

    Read more

  • Colombian army and FARC rebels begin work on ceasefire

    Read more

  • US National Guard starts to pull out of embattled Missouri town

    Read more

  • PSG fall flat once more against Evian

    Read more

  • Fed Chair says US job market still hampered by Great Recession

    Read more

  • August 22, 1914: The bloodiest day in French military history

    Read more

  • Central African Republic announces coalition cabinet

    Read more

  • Hamas publicly executes "informers"

    Read more

  • French firebrand leftist to quit party presidency, but not politics

    Read more

  • Fear of Ebola sky-high among Air France workers

    Read more

  • US says Islamic State threat 'beyond anything we've seen'

    Read more

  • Malaysia mourns as remains of MH17 victims arrive home

    Read more

  • Interactive: Relive the Liberation of Paris in WWII

    Read more

Bush: no regrets on Iraq War

Latest update : 2008-03-20

US President George W. Bush gave a speech at the Pentagon on the fifth anniversary of the invasion of Iraq, admitting that the incursion has come at a high cost but claiming it was worth it as a 'victory' in the war on terror.

WASHINGTON, March 19 (Reuters) - President George W. Bush
said on Wednesday he had no regrets about the unpopular war in
Iraq despite the "high cost in lives and treasure" and declared
that the United States was on track for a major victory there.
 

Marking the fifth anniversary of the U.S.-led invasion with
a touch of the swagger he showed early in the war, Bush said in
a speech at the Pentagon, "The successes we are seeing in Iraq
are undeniable."
 

With less than 11 months left in office and his approval
ratings near the lows of his presidency, Bush is trying to
shore up support for the Iraq campaign, which has damaged U.S.
credibility abroad and is sure to define his legacy.
 

But he faced the challenge of winning the attention of
Americans more preoccupied with mounting economic troubles and
increasingly focused on the race to pick his successor in the
November election.
 

Bush's Democratic critics used the anniversary as a chance
to reassert accusations that Bush launched the invasion based
on faulty intelligence, mismanaged the war and failed to put
together an exit strategy.
 

"Five years into this battle, there is an understandable
debate over whether the war was worth fighting, whether the
fight is worth winning, and whether we can win it," Bush said.
 

"The answers are clear to me: Removing Saddam Hussein from
power was the right decision, and this is a fight America can
and must win," he said.
 

Appealing to war-weary Americans for patience, Bush touted
the security gains from a troop buildup or "surge" that he
ordered early last year. He said retreat now would embolden al
Qaeda and Iran.
 

"The surge has done more than turn the situation in Iraq
around -- it has opened the door to a major strategic victory
in the broader war on terror," Bush said, referring to
increased cooperation of Iraqi Sunnis in fighting al Qaeda.
 

Such an assertion could come back to haunt Bush if the
situation deteriorates. War critics have roundly mocked Bush
for his premature declaration in May 2003 that "major combat
operations" in Iraq were over as he stood on the USS Abraham
Lincoln under a banner reading "Mission Accomplished."
 

Possibly mindful of that, Bush said, "No one would argue
that this war has not come at a high cost in lives and
treasure, but those costs are necessary when we consider the
cost of a strategic victory for our enemies in Iraq," he said.
 

Not all anniversary assessments were as upbeat as Bush's.
A Washington Post-ABC News poll showed nearly two-thirds of
Americans believe the war was not worth waging.
 

Told about the poll result in an interview with ABC's "Good
Morning America," Vice President Dick Cheney, in Oman after a
visit to Iraq, said: "So?" He added: "I think we cannot be
blown off course by the fluctuations of the public opinion
polls."
 

The war has cost the United States $500 billion. Tens of
thousands of Iraqis have been killed and millions displaced.
Nearly 4,000 U.S. soldiers have been killed, as well as 175
British troops and 134 from other countries.

Date created : 2008-03-19

COMMENT(S)