LITTLE ROCK, Ark. – Former President Clinton said Americans should support President Bush and U.S. troops in the war against Saddam Hussein's regime in Iraq.
"Tonight, many of thousands of America's finest young men and women in uniform, and their allies, are in Iraq with their lives on the line," Clinton said Tuesday at a fund-raising performance of the Arkansas Symphony Orchestra.
"Whatever our politics at this hour, we all should want them and their commander in chief to know that we're praying for them and pulling for them, for their success in their mission, for their safety, for as little loss of life as possible."
In addition to his brief remarks at the event, Clinton narrated portions of the "I Have a Dream" speech of the late civil rights leader the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr., while the orchestra played "Let Freedom Ring," by Alexander Miller.
"Both the terrible threat of terror and the universal appeal of music remind us that all of humanity is interdependent," Clinton said.
The event was a fund-raiser for the orchestra and the William J. Clinton Presidential Foundation, which is building Clinton's presidential library here. William Vickery, director of the orchestra, said the expected $125,000 in proceeds will be divided equally.
The fund-raiser originally was planned to honor King, President Lincoln and the astronauts who died on the Columbia space shuttle.
"Now it has added meaning, with the war," said Skip Rutherford, president of the Clinton foundation.