Tags: Rice: | First | Job | Cut | Off | Not | Capture

Rice: First Job is Cut Off, Not Capture Terrorists

Sunday, 23 September 2001 12:00 AM

Appearing in an interview with "Fox News Sunday" host Tony Snow, Rice said tracing the money in the world's banking system that is being used by terrorists to train, support and direct plots across the world may end up being even more important than military action.

Snow reminded her about Secretary of State's Colin Powell's famous remark at the beginning of the Persian Gulf War, that to kill the snake, you cut its head off, and put it to her that bin Laden was the "titular head" of Arab world terrorism. Rice responded that bin Laden is "clearly part of the story," but reiterated what the president had said last Thursday, "this is a different kind of war."

"We're all going to have to get accustomed to thinking about a different kind of victory, thinking about the need to cut off what makes these terrorist networks work."

She said they must also deny the terrorists safe havens in countries like Afghanistan.

In remarks to reporters Sunday morning, Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld said, "I've got a lot of confidence that the kinds of information we need to get, and indeed are starting to get, about how these terrorist networks function, and how we can root them out, is going to pay dividends. In what way, at what time, in what country, in what place is yet to be seen, but we are making progress."

In the last eleven days numerous countries and international bodies have already begun taking steps to assist U.S. operatives in "rooting out" the terror networks. For example, Sudan this week handed over the names and locations of remaining al-Qaida assets to U.S. intelligence officials already on the ground in the North African country. The Germans have already made a number of arrests.

Powell said Sunday on NBC's "Meet the Press" that Saudi Arabia has agreed to all U.S. requests so far. On Thursday, the State Department demanded Riyadh take action on specific Saudi bank accounts known to be aiding bin Laden's network. He said the Saudis "have promised us full cooperation in going after financial support for these kinds of groups."

On Friday, European Union prime ministers pledged to iron out a common set of law enforcement guidelines to make it easier to not only choke off financial support for terrorist networks but to apprehend them as well. As part of the agreement, the United States and the E.U. will put together a joint anti-terrorism taskforce.

Perhaps no other country has assisted U.S. objectives in ripping up the al-Qaida organization than Pakistan. Last week, the Pakistanis sent a delegation to the Taliban demanding the release of bin Laden.

Asked about a report that Pakistan, like the Taliban, is asking to see evidence on bin Laden, Rice said the United States is not going "to do anything that jeopardizes the investigation that is ongoing." She said we "are drawing on investigative services and information" from a lot of countries and "we need to be careful what we do with it."

But at some point, she said, "We're going to be laying out a case. We are going to be making a case for our allies and friends … and we will be making a case to the American people" beyond the indictment in the U.S. Embassy bombings in Africa and other allegations that the United States has made against bin Laden.

Snow pressed Rice on several reports that the cooperation from Saudi Arabia and Egypt and other moderate Muslim states appeared to be timid and conditional.

"This is not what we're getting from our conversations with Muslim states around the world," she said.

"We have been in constant contact with moderate Arab states … as we move forward your are going to see a number of moderate states" involved in several coalitions with the United States.

She said no decision had been made whether to contact the United Nations in connection with anticipated military action and implied that the U.N. might be more useful to the United States helping to cut off the finances of the terrorists.

Rice reiterated that the United States had the right to defense without consultation under the U.N. charter. There is still "lot of discussion on how we move forward," she added.

Copyright 2001 by United Press International. All rights reserved.

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Appearing in an interview with Fox News Sunday host Tony Snow, Rice said tracing the money in the world's banking system that is being used by terrorists to train, support and direct plots across the world may end up being even more important than military action. Snow...
Rice:,First,Job,Cut,Off,,Not,Capture,Terrorists
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2001-00-23
Sunday, 23 September 2001 12:00 AM
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