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U.S. Department of State

                           THE WHITE HOUSE

                    Office of the Press Secretary

For Immediate Release                                August 8, 1998  

                            TO THE NATION
                           The Oval Office

10:06 A.M. EDT

             THE PRESIDENT:  Good morning.  I want to talk to you 
about the terrorist bombings yesterday that took the lives of 
Americans and Africans at our embassies in Nairobi, Kenya, and 
Dar-es-Salaam, Tanzania; to tell you what we're doing; and how we are 
combatting the larger problem of terrorism that targets Americans.
             Most of you have seen the horrible pictures of 
destruction on television.  The bomb attack in Nairobi killed at 
least 11 Americans.  In Dar-es-Salaam, no Americans lost their lives, 
but at least one was gravely wounded.  In both places, many Africans 
were killed or wounded, and devastating damage was done to our 
embassies and surrounding buildings.
             To the families and friends of those who were killed, I 
know nothing I can say will make sense of your loss.  I hope you will 
take some comfort in the knowledge that your loved ones gave their 
lives to the highest calling -- serving our country, protecting our 
freedom, and seeking its blessings for others.  May God bless their 
             Late yesterday, emergency response teams, led by our 
Departments of State and Defense, arrived in Africa.  The teams 
include doctors to tend to the injured, disaster relief experts to 
get our embassies up and running again, a military unit to protect 
our personnel, and counter-terrorism specialists to determine what 
happened and who was responsible.
             Americans are targets of terrorism in part because we 
have unique leadership responsibilities in the world, because we act 
to advance peace and democracy, and because we stand united against 
             To change any of that -- to pull back our diplomats and 
troops from the world's trouble spots; to turn our backs on those 
taking risks for peace; to weaken our opposition to terrorism -- that 
would give terrorism a victory it must not and will not have.
             Instead we will continue to take the fight to 
terrorists.  Over the past several years, I have intensified our 
effort on all fronts in this battle -- apprehending terrorists 
wherever they are and bringing them to justice; disrupting terrorist 
operations; deepening counter-terrorism cooperation with our allies; 
and isolating nations that support terrorism; protecting our computer 
networks; improving transportation security; combatting the threat of 
nuclear, chemical and biological weapons; giving law enforcement the 
best counter-terrorism tools available.  This year I appointed a 
National Coordinator to bring the full force of our resources to bear 
swiftly and effectively.  

             The most powerful weapon in our counter-terrorism 
arsenal is our determination to never give up.  In recent years we 
have captured major terrorists in the far corners of the world and 
brought them to America to answer for their crimes -- sometimes years 

after they were committed.  They include the man who murdered two CIA 
employees outside its headquarters.  Four years later we apprehended 
him halfway around the world, and a Virginia jury sentenced him to 
death.  The mastermind of the World Trade Center bombing who fled far 
from America -- two years later, we brought him back for trial in New 
York.  And the terrorist responsible for bombing a Pan Am jet bound 
for Hawaii from Japan in 1982, we pursued him for 16 years.  This 
June we caught him.
             Some serious acts of terror remain unresolved, including 
the attack on our military personnel at Khobar Towers in Saudi 
Arabia; the bombing of Pan Am 103 over Lockerbie, Scotland; and now, 
these horrible bombings in Africa.  No matter how long it takes or 
where it takes us, we will pursue terrorists until the cases are 
solved and justice is done.
             The bombs that kill innocent Americans are aimed not 
only at them, but at the very spirit of our country and the spirit of 
freedom.  For terrorists are the enemies of everything we believe in 
and fight for -- peace and democracy, tolerance and security.
             As long as we continue to believe in those values and 
continue to fight for them, their enemies will not prevail.  And our 
responsibility is great, but the opportunities it brings are even 
greater.  Let us never fear to embrace them.
             Thank you for listening.

[End of Document]

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