Thursday, February 3, 2011

November 6, 2003: Remarks by President George W. Bush at the 20th Anniversary of the National Endowment for Democracy

In light of the historic current events, this speech that President George W. Bush gave to the National Endowment for Democracy back in 2003 has become a masterpiece.  The focus of the speech was the demise of dictatorships and rise of democracy that would soon spread across Muslim nations of the Mideast with the example in Iraq as a beacon.  And to think, all those people thought GWB had no clue whatsoever.  I think this speech will be the one used in the history books to define his legacy and it is most definitely.. worth a read..  I had a hard time picking an excerpt, but I think this works.

 "... This is a massive and difficult undertaking -- it is worth our effort, it is worth our sacrifice, because we know the stakes. The failure of Iraqi democracy would embolden terrorists around the world, increase dangers to the American people, and extinguish the hopes of millions in the region. Iraqi democracy will succeed -- and that success will send forth the news, from Damascus to Teheran -- that freedom can be the future of every nation. (Applause.) The establishment of a free Iraq at the heart of the Middle East will be a watershed event in the global democratic revolution. (Applause.)

Sixty years of Western nations excusing and accommodating the lack of freedom in the Middle East did nothing to make us safe -- because in the long run, stability cannot be purchased at the expense of liberty. As long as the Middle East remains a place where freedom does not flourish, it will remain a place of stagnation, resentment, and violence ready for export. And with the spread of weapons that can bring catastrophic harm to our country and to our friends, it would be reckless to accept the status quo. (Applause.)

Therefore, the United States has adopted a new policy, a forward strategy of freedom in the Middle East. This strategy requires the same persistence and energy and idealism we have shown before. And it will yield the same results. As in Europe, as in Asia, as in every region of the world, the advance of freedom leads to peace. (Applause.) 

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