W clarifies comment on winning WOT

Rest assured this will get NO play in the media. From Rush’s site (must be a member to view, but I’m copying the relevant part here):

RUSH: Let’s talk about the American Legion convention. I watched your speech there this morning, and the Democrats are harping on something you said yesterday, or that was aired yesterday on the Today Show with Matt Lauer about your comment about we can’t win it, meaning the war on terror. I think I know what you meant but John Edwards is out there saying (paraphrased), “A-ha! Bush is now flip-flopping, and we, John Kerry and I, we can win this, and Bush is…” What did you mean by this?

THE PRESIDENT: Well, I appreciate you bringing that up. Listen, I should have made my point more clear about what I meant. What I meant was that this is not a conventional war. It is a different kind of war. We’re fighting people who have got a dark ideology who use terrorists, terrorism, as a tool. They’re trying to shake our conscience. They’re trying to shake our will, and so in the short run the strategy has got to be to find them where they lurk. I tell people all the time, “We will stay on the on the offense. We will bring them to justice in foreign lands so we don’t have to face them here at home,” and that’s because you cannot negotiate with these people. And in a conventional war there would be a peace treaty or there would be a moment where somebody would sit on the side and say we quit. That’s not the kind of war we’re in, and that’s what I was saying. The kind of war we’re in requires, you know, steadfast resolve, and I will continue to be resolved to bring them to justice, but as well as to spread liberty. And this is one of the interesting points of the debate, Rush, is that, you know, I believe societies can be transformed because of liberty, and I believe that Iraq and Afghanistan will be free nations, and I believe that those free nations right there in the heart of the Middle East will begin to transform that region into a more hopeful place, which in itself will be a detriment to the ability to these terrorists to recruit — and that’s what I was saying. I probably needed to be a little more articulate.

RUSH: Well, it’s like saying that they’re all over the world. You’re not fighting a country here, a series of countries. You’re fighting a movement that will hide out anywhere it can, and you’re always going to have a renegade terrorist. Even if, let’s say, we wipe out Al-Qaeda. There’s some other group or individual that may spring up and blow up a bomb somewhere. That’s always going to happen because it always has.

THE PRESIDENT: Right. Really what I was saying to Lauer was, is that this is not the kind of war where you sit down and sign a peace treaty. It’s a totally different kind of war. But we will win it. Your listeners have got to know that I know we’ll win it, but we’re going to have to be resolved and firm, and we can’t doubt what we stand for, and the long-term solution is to spread freedom. I love to tell the story, Rush, about a meeting with Prime Minister Koizumi. He’s my friend. He’s the prime minister of Japan. It wasn’t all that long ago that my dad, your dad, and others dads were fighting against the Japanese, but because after World War II we believed that Japan could self-govern and could be democratic in its own fashion, Japan is no longer an enemy; it’s a friend, and so I sit down with him to help resolve issues like the North Korean peninsula. In other words, we’re working together to keep the peace. The same thing is going to happen in Iraq and Afghanistan, and that’s when I say the transformational power of liberty. That’s what I’m talking about.