A return to terror in Iraq (search) would embolden America's enemies, President Bush said, but a free and democratic Arab country will help demoralize and dismantle terrorist groups.

Calling the actions of America's enemies "brutal," the president warned Monday night that violence and death will continue as Iraq moves to independence and freedom, but it will not succeed in deterring the coalition's goals in Iraq.

"America's task in Iraq is not only to defeat an enemy, it is to give strength to a friend — a free, representative government that serves its people and fights on their behalf. And the sooner this goal is achieved, the sooner our job will be done," the president said during a speech at the Army War College in Carlisle, Pa.

"We have no interest in occupation, and full sovereignty will give Iraqis a direct interest in their own government," he said.

Bush speech: Grade it

A sample of your responses:

The President said what needed to be said. If people still want more they are not listening or do not want to hear. We want to stop the terrorists on their soil not ours so our grandchildren can live in  safety.
Carolyn A.
Marietta, GA

I support President Bush and fully intend to vote for his re-election. But my grade his speech on Iraq? A "C" at best. Nothing new here, and one
issue REALLY stuck in my craw was his statement that we are going to build a new state-of-the-art maximum security prison, and raze the current Abu Gharaib Prison.
What - other than his chauvinistic pitch - obligates the US to invest that amount of money over there ON SYMBOLISM? If thought to buy some loyalty - this will wind up costing close to a billion dollars - for two cents worth, if that, of public relations. A total waste of US taxpayer hard-earned dollars - at a time when gas prices are soaring - milk prices are soaring, and lives are being lost over there.
Bill P.
River Ridge, LA

For those of us common folk who don't deal in "nuances" we think the President's speech was great.
Lillian M.
Hollister, MO

First we hear that the President doesn't have a plan.  When he outlines his plan (again), we hear "well we already knew that."
He gave some details that I haven't heard and if they've been reported, the "insiders" need to understand that the news isn't everybody's profession or obsession.
I was under the impression that the president was making a speech to inform John Q. Public. I could not care less what Bob Beckley, etc., thinks about the president's speech.
Judy P.
Birmingham, AL

Bush answered the criticism of "What is the plan in Iraq" and of course once he answered the question...someone changed the question. His speech was grounded...people wanted lightening to strike and instead he stated facts and direction...that's what a leader does.
I am waiting for the next speech with great anticipation.
C. Outram
Fryeburg, ME

I think it is great that the president is taking his plan to the people.  This is what many detractors said he needed to do.  I think its a shame that NOT ONE network felt the need to air it.
Amy J.
Myrtle Beach, SC

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