President Bush compared Congress' Democratic leaders Thursday with people who ignored the rise of Lenin and Hitler early in the last century, saying "the world paid a terrible price" then and risks similar consequences for inaction today.
Bush accused Congress of stalling important pieces of the fight to prevent new terrorist attacks by: dragging out and possibly jeopardizing confirmation of Michael Mukasey as attorney general, a key part of his national security team; failing to act on a bill governing eavesdropping on terrorist suspects; and moving too slowly to approve spending measures for the Iraq war, Pentagon and veterans programs.
"Unfortunately, on too many issues, some in Congress are behaving as if America is not at war," Bush said during a speech at the Heritage Foundation. "This is no time for Congress to weaken the Department of Justice by denying it a strong and effective leader. ... It's no time for Congress to weaken our ability to intercept information from terrorists about potential attacks on the United States of America. And this is no time for Congress to hold back vital funding for our troops as they fight al-Qaida terrorists and radicals in Afghanistan and Iraq."
He argued that the current debate over the Iraq war and the Bush administration's anti-terror methods harkens back to debates decades ago in Washington when Soviet founder Vladimir Lenin first talked about launching a communist revolution, when Adolf Hitler began moves to establish an "Aryan superstate" in Germany, and when some argued that Cold War accommodation of the Soviet Union was wiser than competition.
"Now we're at the start of a new century, and the same debate is once again unfolding, this time regarding my policy in the Middle East," Bush said. "Once again, voices in Washington are arguing that the watchword of the policy should be stability."
Bush said denial that "we are at war" is dangerous.
"History teaches us that underestimating the words of evil, ambitious men is a terrible mistake," Bush said. "Bin Laden and his terrorist allies have made their intentions as clear as Lenin and Hitler before them. And the question is, will we listen?"
"When it comes to funding our troops, some in Washington should spend more time responding to the warnings of terrorists like Osama bin Laden and the requests of our commanders on the ground," Bush said, "and less time responding to the demands of MoveOn.org bloggers and Code Pink protesters."
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