Saturday, December 22, 2007

This post is from January 31, 2005.

To all those who always see another Vietnam, and who would have cut and run and left Iraqis to the same fate as the South Vietnamese;

To the sunshine lovers of liberty;

To those for whom defeating Bush, at all costs means more than celebrating liberty;

To those who've torn shoulder muscles moving the goalposts;

To those who saw another Stalingrad (and secretly hoped it would be so) in the fall of Baghdad;

To the Party that wanted to see the Eastern Europeans and South and Central Americans languish under Soviet domination into eternity, and that seems to feel the same way about Arabs;

To those who rallied to ANSWER's side, Stalinism be damned, the lives and fortunes of millions be damned;

To those who could not shake the habits of a lifetime of calculated isolationism;

To those who glorify tyrants everywhere, to the point of treating as legitimate Potemkin elections:

I echo two great men, the first:

America must remain freedom's staunchest friend, for freedom is our best ally. ..

Now we are standing inside this symbol of our democracy. Now we hear again the echoes of our past: a general falls to his knees in the hard snow of Valley Forge; a lonely President paces the darkened halls, and ponders his struggle to preserve the Union; the men of the Alamo call out encouragement to each other; a settler pushes west and sings a song, and the song echoes out forever and fills the unknowing air.

It is the American sound. It is hopeful, big-hearted, idealistic, daring, decent, and fair. That's our heritage; that is our song. We sing it still. For all our problems, our differences, we are together as of old, as we raise our voices to the God who is the Author of this most tender music. And may He continue to hold us close as we fill the world with our sound—sound in unity, affection, and love—one people under God, dedicated to the dream of freedom that He has placed in the human heart, called upon now to pass that dream on to a waiting and hopeful world.

And the man who built on that:

America's vital interests and our deepest beliefs are now one. From the day of our founding, we have proclaimed that every man and woman on this earth has rights and dignity and matchless value because they bear the image of the maker of heaven and earth. Across the generations, we have proclaimed the imperative of self-government, because no one is fit to be a master, and no one deserves to be a slave.

Advancing these ideals is the mission that created our nation. It is the honorable achievement of our fathers. Now it is the urgent requirement of our nation's security, and the calling of our time. So it is the policy of the United States to seek and support the growth of democratic movements and institutions in every nation and culture, with the ultimate goal of ending tyranny in our world.

And I say this:


And it's just beginning.

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