Bush Calls For Patience, Resolve in Face of Terror Threats

Washington - President Bush warned that the plot by more than 20 individuals in the United Kingdom to detonate liquid explosives aboard flights to the United States is “further evidence that the terrorists we face are sophisticated, and constantly changing their tactics.” (See related article.)

Speaking in his weekly radio address to the American public August 12, Bush praised the arrests of the would-be terrorists as “the culmination of hard work, cooperation, and information-sharing across different agencies and different governments,” but he said that although the arrests “have significantly disrupted the threat … we cannot be sure that the threat has been eliminated.” 

Bush called for “patience, cooperation, and vigilance” on the part of travelers in the coming days, saying, “The inconveniences you will face are for your protection, and they will give us time to adjust our screening procedures to meet the current threat.”

Liquids have been temporarily banned as carry-on items on all flights.  In addition, U.S. authorities have raised the threat warning for flights from the United Kingdom to the United States to the highest level, “Code Red,” and issued a “Code Orange,” the second highest threat level, for all domestic and international flights landing in the United States.  The president said additional U.S. federal air marshals have been sent to the United Kingdom to provide extra protection aboard flights to the United States.  (See related article.)

The president said the United States “is safer than it was” prior to the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, but the danger of terrorism remains. 

“This week's experience reminds us of a hard fact:  The terrorists have to succeed only once to achieve their goal of mass murder, while we have to succeed every time to stop them,” he said.

Bush called for “patience, courage, and untiring resolve,” and said the terrorists seeking to kill innocent civilians “need to know that America, Great Britain, and our allies are determined to defend ourselves and advance the cause of liberty.”

The full transcript of the president’s radio address can be found at the White House Web site.