5,450. 10/23/2003

“Later in the [October 23, 2003] meeting, one of [Australian Prime Minister John] Howard’s advisers asked [President] Bush if he thought Islamic cultures could really adopt democracy. ‘I think so over time,’ Bush replied. ‘I believe Iraq is the place’ that will help make it happen. ‘It will evolve into a democratic, free’ country like Turkey or like Bahrain is ‘moving to.’ ‘I believe freedom is the deepest hope of every human heart,’ Bush added. ‘I think there are enough Muslim leaders committed to freedom to move Islamic states in that direction. I believe it is going to happen.’ ”

 – Scott McClellan, What Happened: Inside the Bush White House and Washington’s Culture of Deception, Pages 195-196

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