5,007. 5/1/2003

After announcing that ‘major combat operations in Iraq have ended‘ from the deck of the USS Abraham Lincoln on May 1, 2003, President Bush “explained that ‘the battle of Iraq is one victory in a war on terror that began on September the eleventh, 2001, and still goes on’ and that the battle had ‘removed an ally of Al Qaeda’ and seen to it that ‘no terrorist network will gain weapons of mass destruction from the Iraqi regime, because the regime is no more.’ He invoked the carnage of the attacks that had so traumatized America twenty months earlier. ‘We have not forgotten the victims of September the eleventh, the last phone calls, the cold murder of children, the searches in the rubble,’ he said. ‘With those attacks, the terrorists and their supporters declared war on the United States, and war is what they got.’ That this war happened to be against a country that had had nothing to do with 9/11 was largely overlooked in the excitement of an American victory achieved in just over forty days with only 139 American casualties.”

 – Frank Rich, The Greatest Story Ever Sold, Page 90

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