'Islamic extremists among most brutal enemy US has faced'
The Al-Qaeda terrorist network and affiliated Islamic extremists represent one of the most brutal enemies the US has ever seen, Donald H Rumsfeld said.india Updated: Mar 28, 2006 02:34 IST
The Al-Qaeda terrorist network and affiliated Islamic extremists represent one of the most brutal enemies the United States has ever seen, Defence Secretary Donald H Rumsfeld said on Tuesday.
In remarks prepared for delivery to Army War College students and faculty, Rumsfeld cited several examples of vicious terrorist assaults, including the September 11, 2001 attacks, and warned that unless the terrorists are stopped they will continue to seek the means to launch even deadlier attacks on the West in the years ahead.
"The enemy we face may be the most brutal in our history," Rumsfeld said. "They lack only the means, not the desire, to murder millions of innocent people with weapons vastly more powerful than boarding passes and box cutters," he added, referring to the terrorists who hijacked the airliners on September 11.
Earlier in the day Rumsfeld stopped at Shanksville, Pennsylvania, to see for the first time the place where hijacked United Airlines Flight 93 crashed in a field on September 11, killing all 40 passengers and crew shortly after hijacked planes crashed into the World Trade Centre and the Pentagon. The September 11 Commission report said the hijackers crashed the plane as passengers tried to take control of the cockpit.
In his prepared remarks, Rumsfeld described the Shanksville site as a place where "a group of ordinary airline passengers gave their lives in extraordinary defiance of foreign hijackers and in defence of our country's capital.