Remembering a March 2002 press briefing...
Posted by darkstar 11 years ago
Q: Mr. President, in your speeches now you rarely talk or mention Osama bin Laden. Why is that? Also, can you tell the American people if you have any more information, if you know if he is dead or alive? Final part -- deep in your heart, don't you truly believe that until you find out if he is dead or alive, you won't really eliminate the threat of --  
 
THE PRESIDENT: Deep in my heart I know the man is on the run, if he's alive at all. Who knows if he's hiding in some cave or not; we haven't heard from him in a long time. And the idea of focusing on one person is -- really indicates to me people don't understand the scope of the mission.  
 
Terror is bigger than one person. And he's just -- he's a person who's now been marginalized. His network, his host government has been destroyed. He's the ultimate parasite who found weakness, exploited it, and met his match. He is -- as I mentioned in my speech, I do mention the fact that this is a fellow who is willing to commit youngsters to their death and he, himself, tries to hide -- if, in fact, he's hiding at all.  
 
So I don't know where he is. You know, I just don't spend that much time on him, Kelly, to be honest with you. I'm more worried about making sure that our soldiers are well-supplied; that the strategy is clear; that the coalition is strong; that when we find enemy bunched up like we did in Shahikot Mountains, that the military has all the support it needs to go in and do the job, which they did.  
 
And there will be other battles in Afghanistan. There's going to be other struggles like Shahikot, and I'm just as confident about the outcome of those future battles as I was about Shahikot, where our soldiers are performing brilliantly. We're tough, we're strong, they're well-equipped. We have a good strategy. We are showing the world we know how to fight a guerrilla war with conventional means.  
 
Q: But don't you believe that the threat that bin Laden posed won't truly be eliminated until he is found either dead or alive?  
 
THE PRESIDENT: Well, as I say, we haven't heard much from him. And I wouldn't necessarily say he's at the center of any command structure. And, again, I don't know where he is. I -- I'll repeat what I said. I truly am not that concerned about him. I know he is on the run. I was concerned about him, when he had taken over a country. I was concerned about the fact that he was basically running Afghanistan and calling the shots for the Taliban.  
 
But once we set out the policy and started executing the plan, he became -- we shoved him out more and more on the margins. He has no place to train his al Qaeda killers anymore.
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darkstar: One year before the invasion of Iraq.
grrr
FuzzyDave: that was the moment i truly began to hate the man.  
 
imagine if a group of killers came into your home and slaughtered your family and months later the mayor comes to your house and says, "we've stopped looking for the guy responsible for murdering your family. Cuz, y'know...He's HIDING. So, we don't consider him a threat anymore."  
 
How would you feel? What would you do?  
If you're republican, obviously, you'd reelect him.  
 
And that's why i hate america.  
darkstar: fd, why do you hate Ame-...  
 
Oh. I see.
darkstar: I also find it damning that, one year before we invaded Iraq, Bush was emphatic that Bin Laden "had no other place to train his Al Qaeda operatives".  
 
Yet only months later, the story changed and the lie was fabricated that Saddam and Bin Laden were supposedly in cahoots.