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13 January 2005

Bush Says Military Making "Significant Difference" in Asian Relief

President says success in the War on Terror will require "coordinated effort"

President Bush said that the U.S. military has made a "significant difference" in tsunami relief in Asia. 

Speaking January 13 with Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld following briefings on the War on Terror and the Asian relief efforts, Bush said tsunami victims who have been helped by the U.S. military are appreciative.

“I am very impressed, Mr. Secretary, by how quickly we have responded and the assets that you have ordered deployed to help these people, the president told Rumsfeld. 

Turning to the War on Terror, the president said success "will require a coordinated effort within our own government, as well as a coordinated effort with the countries around the world which understand the stakes of this war."  Bush said he was pleased with the current global response, but said, “[We] constantly have got to review our plans and never lose our will in the struggle.

Following is the transcript of President Bush’s remarks:

(begin transcript)

THE WHITE HOUSE

Office of the Press Secretary

January 13, 2005

REMARKS BY THE PRESIDENT

TO THE TRAVEL POOL

The PENTAGON

11:21 A.M. EST

THE PRESIDENT:  Mr. Secretary, thank you very much for the briefing that we just had.  The Secretary arranged for a briefing from Admiral Fargo and our commanders on the ground who are providing organization and handling the relief effort for the victims of the tsunamis.  I got to tell you our military is making a significant difference in providing relief and aid and help and compassion for those who have suffered.  I am very impressed, Mr. Secretary, by how quickly we have responded and the assets that you have ordered deployed to help these people.  And there's a lot of talk about how some in the world don't appreciate America, well, I can assure you that those who have been helped by our military appreciate America. 

We also talked about the war on terror.  We're constantly reviewing our strategy as to how to defeat the enemy -- fully recognize that the war on terror will require a coordinated effort within our own government, as well as a coordinated effort with the countries around the world which understand the stakes of this war.  I am pleased with the response from around the world, appreciate so many nations understanding that we must work together to defeat these killers.  I'm mindful of the fact that we have -- constantly have got to review our plans and never lose our will.

So, Mr. Secretary, thanks for the briefing.  It was a very good briefing, and you're doing a fine job on behalf of the American people.

SECRETARY RUMSFELD:  Thank you, sir.

THE PRESIDENT:  Thank you all.

END              

11:24 A.M. EST

(end transcript)

(Distributed by the Bureau of International Information Programs, U.S. Department of State. Web site: http://usinfo.state.gov)



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