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|It's About Freedom||04/15/2004|
The enemies of freedom are systematically attempting to intimidate the world into backing down from the fight currently underway in the Middle East. The kidnapping and mutilation of Japanese,
Italian, French, American and other civilian workers and peacekeepers, the railway bombings in Madrid, and the foiled terrorist attempts in other countries all illustrate the real reason we are fighting this "war on terror." It is not about American might. It is not about "big oil." It is not about a religious or holy war. It is about one thing: freedom.
True democracies are based on unshakable principles that guarantee personal freedom. With this freedom comes responsibility, both personally and collectively, to stand up and, if necessary, fight for the freedom of ourselves and others.
Character, courage, commitment and compassion, along with sacrifice, for as long as it takes is an absolute to which we must be committed if we are going to see freedom prevail and expand. Our elected officials must lead our nation on this bold and necessary journey. We must be as committed to the fight as our military and their families.
At the same time, we must understand that unprincipled nations claiming to be democratic may not support us. Despite the leftist media's attempt to paint this battle as "unilateral," the fact is that many nations are still on the right side of the fight. But even if America has to stand alone, we must continue to stand.
Imagine the chaos that would be unleashed upon the entire world if America did not stand! The bombings in Bali, Nairobi, Madrid, Jerusalem and other targeted cities would not go away -- they would increase and multiply around the globe.
Our fight is about freedom. It's not simply about defending our Western way of life or comfort. President Bush said, "I believe that God has planted in every heart the desire to live in freedom. And even when that desire is crushed by tyranny for decades, it will rise again."
Freedom is rising in a part of the world long held under the control of thieves, murderers, dictators and terrorists. In a culture where parents strap bombs to their children and send them off to kill, freedom is going to be fiercely resisted. But freedom is what all people need and deserve. In the end, it will be the salvation not only of the Middle East, but the rest of the world as well.
On January 20, 1961, President John F. Kennedy boldly declared in his inaugural address, "Let every nation know, whether it wishes us well or ill, that we shall pay any price, bear any burden, meet any hardship, support any friend, oppose any foe to assure the survival and the success of liberty."
All Americans, and indeed all freedom-loving people, must stay strong in the face of fierce opposition. Now is not the time to run from this mission. Now is the time to fight for freedom.