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Bush Says Sacrifices in Iraq Are Vital to U.S. Security

President Bush says the sacrifices being made by Americans in Iraq are "worth it" and vital to the future security of the United States.

In a nationally-televised address late Tuesday, Mr. Bush said he, like most Americans, has seen the horrifying images from Iraq of suicide bombings and other deadly acts of violence. But he said America must stay the course and fulfill its mission to hunt down the terrorists and help Iraqis build a free nation that is an ally in the war on terror.

(Speaking from Fort Bragg, North Carolina) Mr. Bush rejected calls for sending reinforcements to Iraq and dismissed appeals for a timetable for U.S. forces to withdraw.

He referred to Iraq as a central battlefield in the war on terrorism. And he said the only way enemies of the United States can succeed is if Americans forget the lessons of the September 11th terrorist attacks, and abandon the Iraqi people to men like Abu Musab al-Zarqawi.

The speech marked the first anniversary of the transfer of sovereignty to the Iraqis.