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And so, on October 7,
We will not waver, we will not tire, President Bush promised. We will not falter and we will not fail.
Even as the
. . I swear by God. . . neither America nor the people who live in it will dream of security before we live it in Palestine, and not before all the infidel armies leave the land of Muhammad, peace be upon him.
Knowing that there could be terrorist retaliation the FBI said it was urging law enforcement agencies nationwide to be at the highest level of vigilance and be prepared to respond to any act of terrorism or violence.
Indeed, American fears were realized as terrorist-propagated attacks of the deadly biological weapon, Anthrax, began to appear. The source of the spread was ingenious as the powdered anthrax was placed in envelopes to be mailed to specific recipients.
On October 15, it was revealed that one of these recipients was Senator Tom Daschle. Early in the day officials announced that aides to the Senator opened a letter in his office that preliminary tests revealed had been laced with anthrax.
With one of his two offices closed and under quarantine for several days the senator promised that Congress would not cower under Osamas threats. The Senate and this institution will not stop, he declared. We will not cease our business and we will continue our work.
However, on October 17 House leaders shut down operations through the weekend for extensive testing. This was a result of the fact that 31 Senate employees had tested positive for anthrax exposure. To ensure safety, we thought it best to do a complete sweep, and environmental sweep, Speaker Dennis Hasert asserted. Long lines immediately formed as congressional employees sought tests and the three-day supply of antibiotics distributed by health officials.
But this threat did not deter American
* * *
With this victory under his belt,
President Bush turned his attention to the major player in the Axis of Evil. Saddam
Hussein had repeatedly violated the agreement he had made with the UN after George Bush
senior defeated him in Operation Desert Storm. He had failed to discontinue
manufacturing weapons of mass destruction, chemical, biological and nuclear. He had kicked
the UN inspectors, who were assigned to monitor the weapons situation, out of
What would happen if Hussein developed a nuclear bomb and placed it in the hands of Osama? What would be the result of these terrorists getting their hands on Husseins biological and chemical weapons? George W. Bush was going to make certain that this would never happen. On my orders, coalition forces have begun striking selected targets of military importance to undermine Saddam Husseins ability to wage war, the president announced on March 19, 2003 as the war against Iraq called Operation Iraqi Freedom, officially began.
One of the strikes at
Saddam appeared on videotape a few hours after the attack to say, We promise you that Iraq, its leadership and its people will stand up to the evil invaders, and we will take them to such limits that they will lose their patience in achieving their plans, which are pushed by criminal Zionism. However, when was this videotaped made, and who was actually on the videotape Saddam or one of his many doubles? Nobody knew for sure, but most supposed that Saddam was lying injured in a hospital by then.
That was the beginning of the air
campaign. Then the next day, on March 20, the ground campaign began. As parts of
Saddam appeared grim-faced on TV leading
to suspicions with regards to whether it was he or a double. According to Bush spokesman
Ari Fleischer, We have reached no conclusion about that videotape as to whether that
is or is not Saddam Hussein or what time that may or may not have been prerecorded.
But there were not any doubles posing as the president of the
Even as the ground assault began, a
second wave of air attacks pounded
But that was only the beginning. On March 21, the blasts from the shock and awe campaign jolted the city of 5 million to its core. The Pentagon said that more than 1,5000 missiles and bombs rained down. Id like to put my name on one of them, declared a crewmember of the USS Harry S. Truman.
In every other air attack in history, an
air campaign meant decimating an entire city, including its citizenry. Not so with modern
technology! For the first time in history the fire rained down from heaven only to hit
specific targets while, for the most part, leaving innocent citizens, their homes and
businesses and lives alone. The American attack left much of central
On the ground, in the mean time, an
entire division of Iraqi soldiers at least 6,000 of them surrendered in
Indeed, in spite of
In the mean time, the advancing
However, President Bush was cautious in his assessment: A campaign on harsh terrain in a vast country could be longer and more difficult that some have predicted. Helping Iraqis achieve a united, stable and free country will require our sustained commitment.
In spite of these early successes, on March 23, President Bush remained cautious: It is evident that its going to take a while to achieve our objective. I can assure the American people were making good progress and I can also assure them that this is just the beginning of a tough fight.
His comments came after the allies were
surprised by the resilient Iraqis who killed up to nine Marines in the southern city of
It was a tough day of fighting for the coalition, Brig. General Vincent Brooks admitted.
Clearly they are not a beaten force, added Gen. Richard Myers. This is going to get a lot harder.
While coalition forces pressed within
100 miles of
We live in the time where we have fictitious election results that elect a fictitious president, the ultra-liberal declared. We live in a time where we have a man whos sending us to war for fictitious reasons, whether its the fiction duct tape or the fiction of orange alerts. As the orchestra played a cue for the traitor to leave the stage he shouted, We are against the war, Mr. Bush. Shame on you, Mr. Bush. Shame on you.
Even as the
It felt great when we came in, with the crowds waiting and smiling. Now you wonder whats behind those smiles and what lies beneath those crowds, revealed Lt. Colonel Michael Belcher. Its tough to win over their hearts and minds now, when you have to hold them at arms length.
Yet fear was on Saddams side as he posted his most trusted militia, the Fedayeen Saddam to proceed behind Iraqi regulars with guns at their back. They told the regulars fight or be shot in the back. In addition, there were three Republican Guard divisions posted, believed to have numbered as many as 80,000 troops.
When youre in a sandstorm, added Patrick Garrnett of GlobalSecurity.org, You dont have air operations. Murphys law reigns supreme.
Nonetheless, while in the swirling storm 150 elite Iraqi soldiers were killed 100 miles south of the capital in the biggest battle of the war thus far.
The British were still having problems
in the southern city of
In the mean time, Iraqis were busy executing American prisoners. A few American units had taken a wrong turn in Nasiriya and were captured and killed before the towns people. A videotape of the dead soldiers was shown on TV revealing American heroes with bullet wounds to the head.
President Bush remained cautious but optimistic: We cannot know the duration of this war. Yet we know its outcome. We will prevail.
March 27 brought the presidents
words even closer to reality as
According to Capt. Thomas A. Parker of the USS Kitty Hawk combat aircraft dropped bombs just about as fast as we (could) load them.
Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfield
suggested that the
Perhaps the crazy Iraqi was right. Lt. Gen. William Wallace, in face of strong resistance was asked whether the fighting during the recent days increased the chances of a longer war than forecast. He replied, Its beginning to look that way.
And so the House approved a resolution calling for a national day of humility, prayer and fasting in time of war and terrorism. The resolution stated that Americans should use the day of prayer to seek guidance from God to achieve a greater understanding of our own failings and to learn how we can do better in our everyday activities, and gain resolve in meeting the challenges that confront our nation.
On March 26 the
But American troops now had to face Iraqi civilian suicide attacks. American military men watched as fighters attempted to drive a civilian bus, with passengers aboard, into a Bradley Fighting Vehicle. They destroyed the bus leaving the road littered with dead innocent bodies. They have decided on suicide missions to get at us, said Capt. Jason Conroy. We need to be really careful about any civilian vehicles approaching us. So far the 7th cavalry had lost two Abrams tanks to attacks by civilian fuel tankers. They are just running the trucks into the tanks and exploding them. They could do the same with cars loaded with (munitions). In addition, Saddam outfitted many of his troops with American and British uniforms either to confuse invading forces or stage atrocities against innocent civilians that could be blamed on coalition troops.
Yet, in spite of the madness of the
Iraqi regime, Americans pressed on successfully with their plans. The insane Hussein set
fire of his own oilfields. But by March 26 the oil fields and pipelines in southern
On May 28, while President Bush was
cautioning of further sacrifice ahead, the military was making sure that
those sacrifices would be minimal. American forces dropped 1,000-pound bombs on the
Republican Guard that were ringing
But the Iraqi defense minister, Sutan
Hasim Amed declared that the real fight would be with the Iraqi people: The enemy
must come inside
The war for the British remained tough
Then, on March 29 the Iraqi leadership
issued more threats even as a new suicide attack targeted Americans. A man drove his taxi
But the terrorism did not stop with
threats against the
According to Gen. McCorkle,
Theyve copied a lot of the tactics of
With his eye on the destruction of the Republican Guard President Bush revealed, We are now fighting the most desperate units of the dictators army.
Its impossible to identify who is the normal citizen, sighed Maj. Peter MacMullen. The person I want to stop is the lunatic who will go to our rear areas and shoot us up. Indeed, the British had their work cut out for them as more than 1,000 Iraqi fighters remained in the city.
The Republican Guard around
On March 31
Day by day we are moving closer to
However, Iraqi Foreign Minister Naji
Sabri stated, Every day that passes, the
On April 1, in a daring show of the
potency of American strength, special ops forces went right into an Iraqi stronghold to
rescue Pfc. Jessica Lynch, who had been held captive since March 23 after her 15-member
maintenance unit took a wrong turn in the desert separating them from the rest of the
And soon that mighty power would be displayed. As army ground forces pushed toward Karbala after attacking Republican Guard units near the strategically-located holy city, it became evident that coalition forces were gearing up for their long-awaited assault on Baghdad.
What youre seeing today on
the battlefield in
Some of them have been degraded to pretty low percentages of combat capability, below 50 percent in. . . at least two cases, and we continue to work on them, Gen. Richard Myers added.
Down south in
Even as the bombs continued to drop on
Apparently Saddams call for jihad
was effective with some. Arabs throughout the region were eager to join the dictator. One
senior figure or another boasted daily that another 1,000 Arab volunteers had entered into
The prophet Mohammed warned that
there would be no judgment day until the Muslims fight the Jews, Abu Shinaf said.
We see no difference between the Americans and the Jews and, God willing, we Arabs
can settle all our accounts with the Americans and the British. Damn
Libyan volunteer Abu Shinaf declared,
I will stay there until the last infidel leaves the
However, those loyal fundamentalists
would have to fight a whole lot of American soldiers who were, by April 2, only 20 miles
Down south in Najaf, throngs of Iraqi citizens greeted US troops in a grand show of enthusiasm. This was the first town of any size that Americans had fought for and taken control of. Democracy! said one man.
In Bashira American warplanes unleashed a ferocious attack on Iraqi lines. Bombs came down like rain. Bombs came down like fire, lamented an Iraqi soldier.
Even as American troops pressed towards victory, another desert obstacle loomed ahead. A sustained heat wave was slowly building. Though US military officials indicated that troops had trained for those conditions and that they had plenty of water, the risk of heat-related illnesses loomed as a real possibility.
On April 3 Allied forces entered Saddam
International Airport 10 miles from the center of the city and captured a portion of it as
well. Special forces were turning up the heat all throughout
President Bush was elated with the
progress of the war commenting, Moving a massive force over 200 miles of enemy
territory in a matter of days is a superb achievement. . . Having traveled hundreds of
miles, we will now go the last 200 yards. . . We will remove weapons of mass destruction
from the hands of mass murderers. . . Overcoming evil is the noblest cause and the hardest
work. And the liberation of millions is the fulfillment of
. . . A vise is closing. Our
Indeed, the president was right. On
April 4, US forces fought their way to the center of
Theyre pretty much cut off
in all directions, Air Force Capt. Dani Burrows concurred. Pretty much what
youve got here is a chokehold around
Searches for the alleged banned weapons were now going on. But nothing had been found yet.
About 35 miles south in Suwayrah, Army soldiers rolled over the Republican Guard and easily captured the entire base. Though Saddam urged his country to strike them forcefully, US Marines reported the surrender of about 2,500 members of Saddams fighting elite. So much for the celebrated Republican Guard!
We are almost in control of their country, and well be in complete control soon, Secretary of State Colin Powell promised.
Indeed, on April 7 US troops strolled
right into Saddams illustrious New Presidential Palace to make themselves at home.
Among the ruins they found gold-painted faux French furniture, fabulous views of the
US troops also toppled a 40-foot statue of Saddam in a demonstration of the end of the regime. In the mean time US forces pressed into the city from two sides.
But dangers still loomed. According to Col. David Perkins: We had a lot of suicide attackers today. These guys are going to die in droves. . . They keep trying to ram the tanks with car bombs.
Nonetheless, according to army commander Perkins, We can basically go wherever we want, even if Saddam is still alive.
In spite of the fact that American
troops filled the city, Iraqi Information Minister Mohammed Saeed al-Sahhaf remained in
denial while claiming, There is no presence of American infidels in the city of
American intelligence had also learned
of a high-level meeting in
And finally, after a two-week siege, the
British finally took control over
The hostilities phase is coming to a conclusion, Collin Powell revealed.
Therefore, on April 8 US forces battled
the tattered remnants of Husseins vanquished armed forces, taking control of
Captain Frank Thorp related, We
are continuing to maintain our ability to conduct operations around and in
And Saddam was yet to be found. I dont know if he survived, the bombing attack, Bush related. The only thing I know is that hes losing power.
On April 9 jubilation filled the streets
We are not seeing any organized resistance, Captain Frank Thorp declared. The Iraqi military is unable to fight as an organized fighting force.
Iraqis UN ambassador, Mohammed Al-Douris finally relented that the game is over, and I hope peace will prevail.
All-in-all 101 American troops and 30 British troops had been killed in the campaign to date. And though Saddams whereabouts continued to remain a mystery, Defense Secretary Rumsfeld declared that Saddam is taking his rightful place along side such dictators of the past as Adolf Hitler, Josef Stalin and Vladimir Lenin.
Despite these remarkable and historical
gains, on April 10 one more Marine was killed and 22 injured in a seven-hour battle in the
Indeed there was still much to be done
to bring the entire nation under
On April 10 joint addresses from president Bush and British Prime Minister Tony Blair assured the Iraqi people, Your nation will soon be free.
Air Force Secretary James Roche stated, We effectively have won the conflict. The regime is gone.
My brother went up to Saddam and kissed his feet, claimed another.
So what was the truth after all? Was Saddam dead or alive? Perhaps the Iraqi people were thinking that there was a second resurrection.
Not only was Saddam gone, but also so
was his fortune. Estimates of his wealth ranged from $2 billion to $40 billion. Apparently
all of it had been effectively hidden from sight in countries from
On April 11 American troops took the
northern city of
General Tommy Franks, the commanding general, detailed that Saddam and his sons were either dead or theyre running like hell.
About 55 of Saddams top people
were on the run to be exact, because the
Even the French, who had stood in tough
resistance to the war had to admit that
According to Francois Gere, director of
the Paris-based Diplomatic and Defense Institute, The French are seeing the truth
that the coalition was efficient. Before the fighting began nay Sayers all
over the world and in
However, even as the world suddenly
became convinced of the unfailing truthfulness of President Bush and the rightness of his
cause, treason breathed its stench from the mouth of liberal
. . . This is clearly a city that is disciplined. The population is responsive to the governments requirements of discipline.
. . . It is clear that within the
The specific purpose of these comments
was to energize Saddam loyalists who fought against the
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is a graduate of the prestigious music department at CSULB where he studied under Frank
Pooler, lyricist of Merry Christmas Darling, and sang in Poolers world renown
University Choir alongside Karen and Richard Carpenter. During this time Don was also the
lead composer of the band, Clovis Putney, that won the celebrated Hollywood Battle of the
Bands. After giving his life to God, Don began attending Calvary Chapel,
Eventually Don served as a pastor at Calvary Chapel Bakersfield to witness thousands of salvations through that ministry. As the music/concert director, Don worked for seven years with most major Christian artist of that time while producing evangelical concerts attended by thousands of young people seeking after God. Dons Calvary Chapel Praise Choir released the album Let All Who Hath Breath Praise the Lord on the Maranatha! label.
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