Former presidential adviser Karl Rove says it is important that President Barack Obama makes it clear to the American people when he visits ground zero Thursday that the killing of Osama bin Laden does not mean the war on terror is over.
“I think this is an important moment for America not to just celebrate Osama bin Laden’s demise but for the president to — for President Obama to explain to the American people why the war on terror continues, why this is a milestone, not the end point of the war on terror, and to explain why the mission in Afghanistan is so important,” Rove told Fox News’ Greta Van Susteren Wednesday.
“This is [the] moment where a lot of people will say: ‘Well, we got — we got the guy we were after. It's over, isn’t it?’ And President Obama will regret it if he doesn’t use this opportunity as a teachable moment to explain what we face,” Rove continued. “You already saw today the ranking Republican on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, Dick Lugar, said: OK, well, Afghanistan, it's over, right? Time to come home. And more and more people are going to feel that way unless the president explains what the policy is and why it’s necessary to remain and why the war on terror is not yet finished.”
Rove, a top adviser to President George W. Bush, said this is the moment where the president needs to be engaged and to be fully involved diplomatically, militarily, and economically, “using all the leverage we have in order to get further cooperation with the Pakistanis.”
“There is a — this is — it’s clear that the Pakistanis — I don’t think they knew where he was, but it is a sign of their incompetence that they didn't know where he was,” Rove said. “You know, we did need their assistance to identify him. We had assets inside Pakistan, Pakistanis inside the country who helped us identify him, according to the news reports. This is less about celebrating the demise of Osama bin Laden than it is about explaining to the American people what lies ahead.”
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