- The Washington Times - Sunday, May 29, 2011


In a message for Memorial Day, the Afghan ambassador mourned the loss of American troops fighting to save his country from Taliban terrorists.

“Like the American people, my countrymen will never forget the sacrifices your troops have made for the stability of our region,” Ambassador Eklil Hakimi said.

“We are eternally grateful and determined to make sure the blood and treasure you have invested in Afghanistan bring greater security to both of our countries.”

Mr. Hakimi noted the “enormous challenges in front of us” that will “require more fighting and, indeed, more losses.”

“But there is no doubt in our minds that, together, we will prevail and make the world a safer and more civil place for all of us,” he said.

Nearly 1,600 American troops have died in Afghanistan since the United States invaded in 2001 to topple the brutal Taliban regime for sheltering Osama bin Laden and his al Qaeda terrorist network.

Former President George W. Bush launched the campaign in Afghanistan to avenge the deaths of nearly 3,000 Americans and other nationals in the terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon.

Mr. Hakimi, a career diplomat, took up his post in February, replacing Ambassador Said Tayeb Jawad.


The killing of Osama bin Laden should serve as a lesson to terrorists that the United States will catch them, no matter how long it takes, the U.S. ambassador to the Philippines said Sunday.

U.S. commandos killed the al Qaeda leader May 2 in Pakistan, after a 10-year manhunt for the mastermind behind the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks on the United States.

“That serves as a reminder to anyone who would use terrorism as a weapon that there will be relentless effort to bring you to justice,”Ambassador Harry K. Thomas Jr. told an audience of Americans and Filipinos in a Memorial Day speech at the American cemetery in Manila.

U.S. troops are currently helping Filipino soldiers in a fight against the al Qaeda-linked terrorists of Abu Sayyaf in the southern Philippines.


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