Bush Urges Iraqis to 'Seize the Moment'

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President Bush says the killing of Abu Musab al-Zarqawi and the new Iraqi Cabinet are opportunities for Iraq's government to make headway in stamping out violence and creating a lasting democracy.


It's MORNING EDITION. I'm Steve Inskeep.


And I'm Linda Wertheimer.

President GEORGE W. BUSH: My message to the Iraqi people is this: seize the moment.

WERTHEIMER: President Bush seized a few hours in Baghdad yesterday; just a few days before, he marked the death of a terrorist leader.

President BUSH: It's a victory in the global war on terror, and it is an opportunity for Iraq's new government to turn the tide of this struggle.

INSKEEP: And by yesterday, the president was shaking hands with the prime minister of that new government.

President BUSH: I met with a cabinet of officials from all walks of life here in Iraq and came away with the distinct impression that they are unified in serving the people of Iraq; they want to succeed.

INSKEEP: In each of these statements, the president was signaling that it's Iraq's turn to take a greater roll in its security.

President BUSH: The future of your country is in your hands.

INSKEEP: And by giving a larger roll to Iraq, the White House hopes to accomplish what many Americans have been demanding, a reduction in U.S. forces inside Iraq.

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