|The White House
President George W. Bush
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For Immediate Release
February 20, 2004
From prepared remarks by CPA Administrator Bremer, 2/19/04
The Iraqi Governing Council and the Coalition promised that the Iraqi people would have sovereignty on June 30. That date still stands.
Our goal is an Iraq that is free and democratic, peaceful and prosperous, sovereign and united.
The plan to achieve that goal is divided into three parts, focusing on security, governance and the economy.
Iraqis continue to fill the ranks of their armed forces. Iraqi and Coalition forces continue to capture or kill foreign terrorists, subversives and others who would derail Iraq's movement toward democracy.
Al-Qaida associate Abu Musab al-Zarqawi's letter shows that he and other terrorists know they have failed to intimidate the Coalition.
The letter also illustrates that Zarqawi knows that attacks on Iraqis provoke hatred of and resistance to the terrorists.
Zarqawi and the others know they are falling behind in a race against time -- a race against Iraqi self-government.
In their desperation they are trying to provoke a chaotic blood bath. They see it as their only hope to retrieve an otherwise hopeless situation. They explicitly want to kindle sectarian violence.
The growing strength and confidence of Iraq's security forces will eventually overwhelm the subversives and terrorists. Iraqis will, in time, secure their own country.