Sep 12 2001
Washington, D.C. BU.S. Senator John McCain (R-AZ) today delivered the following statement on the Senate floor:
"Mr. President, I have no words to describe or condemn adequately the enormity of yesterday's attacks on the United States or the depravity of those who are responsible for them. All we can really offer now are our prayers and support for the victims and their families, and the assurance to our fellow citizens that America will recover from these atrocities, resume the life of a great nation, strong, resolute and free, and destroy those who seek to destroy us.
"We are greater than our enemies. We are greater because the very virtues our enemies revile and seek to destroy make us so. Our enemies, those who unleashed these attacks, and those who support them, are not our enemies alone. They are the enemies of freedom and independence and justice and peace, and they wage war on the United States because we are and will remain the principal guarantors of freedom for ourselves and for all nations who claim their right to that condition. All people who possess or aspire to freedom were attacked yesterday, and when we answer we do so in their name as well as ours. And answer we will.
"These were not just crimes, they were acts of war, and have aroused in this great nation a controlled fury and unity of purpose not just to punish but vanquish . . . vanquish our enemies. Americans know now that we are at war, and will make the sacrifices and show the resolve necessary to prevail. I say to our enemies, we are coming. God may show you mercy. We will not.
"We must break the back of this international network of terror in all its guises, and deprive its architects, executioners and sponsors of a safe harbor anywhere in this world. We will commit all necessary resources to its accomplishment. Our responses must be diplomatic, economic and military.
"Let us go to our allies, all of our allies, to ensure them of our resolve and to enlist them in this war against our shared values and security. The Atlantic Charter claims an attack on one member of NATO is an attack on all NATO members. We will expect our allies in NATO, Asia and elsewhere to respond to this attack on us as we would respond to an attack on their territory.
"We should make an immediate statement of our resolve that we no longer intend to tolerate sanction given to our enemies by any nation. We should demand that Afghanistan immediately extradite to the United States Osama bin Laden. We will know in due course if he is the architect of yesterday's attacks, but we already possess sufficient evidence to have indicted him for orchestrating the attacks on our embassies in Kenya and Tanzania. He has claimed responsibility for the 1992 attempted bombing of 100 U.S. servicemen in Yemen who were there to assist U.N. famine relief operations in Somalia. He proudly announced his material and personnel support for the Somali forces that fought and killed American servicemen in Mogadishu. The mastermind of the 1993 bombing of the World Trade Center was a known associate of bin Laden. He is a declared enemy of the United States and our allies. And it is long past time that we and our allies brought an end to the war he began.
"Should the Taliban refuse our demand, then they must know that they will be treated as allies of our enemy, and, thus, are themselves our enemies, and will suffer much for their allegiance.
"This campaign will be long and difficult, and will not end with the capture or destruction of Osama bin Laden alone. The American people must, and I am sure, will understand that we will wage this war to its complete resolution however long and difficult the road ahead. But they should not be expected to wait one day longer than necessary for our enemies to be vanquished, for the full measure of justice to be done, for freedom and righteousness to prevail.
"We will prevail. We will prevail because the foundations of our greatness cannot be vanquished. Our respect for Man's God-given rights to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness assures us of victory even as it has made us a target for the unjust enemies of freedom who have mistaken hate and depravity for power. The losses we have suffered are grave, and will never be forgotten. But we should take pride and unyielding resolve from the knowledge that we were attacked because we are good.
“May God bless us in this trial, comfort us, strengthen our resolve, and make our justice as terrible and certain as His.”