Bush continues to repeat portions of his speech from several weeks ago. It is good to see him being more forthright about who the enemy is. He would be foolish, of course, to place too much hope in the adherents of the supposedly un-distorted idea of jihad to rush to his side. From the American Forces Press Service, with thanks to Daryl:
WASHINGTON, Oct. 21, 2005 — Evoking President Ronald Reagan’s leadership of America’s resolve in confronting communism during his two terms in office, President Bush said today that Islamic radicalism is doomed to fail as communism did.
Bush spoke at the Ronald Reagan Library, in Simi Valley, Calif., for the dedication of the new Air Force One Pavilion at the museum, featuring the 707 jet used by Reagan during his presidency.
America prevailed in the 20th-century contest of wills between American freedom and Soviet totalitarianism, Bush noted. In the 21st century, “our freedom is once again being tested by determined enemies,” he added. Terrorists like those who attacked America on Sept. 11, 2001, “are followers of a radical and violent ideology,” Bush said.
Terrorist mastermind Osama bin Laden and others of his ilk “exploit the religion of Islam to serve a violent political vision — the establishment of a totalitarian empire that denies all political and religious freedom,” Bush said.
Islamic extremists distort the concept of jihad, or holy war, to command their followers to murder anyone not in agreement with their principles, including other Muslims, the president said. Like old-style Soviets imbued with the ideology of communism, today’s terrorist leaders “presume to speak” for the masses, he added.