Let me give you my world view on this. Like you, I'd like them home. I really do.
But my decisions have been based on my -- or at least my belief that what we're seeing is one of the -- a great ideological struggle between forces of ration -- rational behavior, decent people, lovers of liberty, versus radicals who have a belief system and they're willing to murder the innocent to achieve -- to advance their objectives. That's how I view it. I don't think you're a religious person if you murder the innocent to achieve political objectives. I think you're a person who is manipulative and cynical and willing to kill in the name of religion; I don't think you're religious.
Secondly, a lot of my decision making has been influenced by what happened on September the 11th, 2001. I vowed that day that I would do everything in my ability to protect you, and that I would -- I wouldn't tire -- I can't remember my exact words, but I would stay on the job. And that's exactly what I have been doing.
This war is really hard for the American people to understand because the enemy uses asymmetrical warfare. They use hundred-dollar weapons to destroy half-a-million-dollar vehicles -- which has got to, as a taxpayer, concern you. I understand that. I understand it.
The American people understand the war. They're against it.
They attacked America -- the last time we were attacked, by the way, prior to September the 11th was Pearl Harbor.
He missed a great opportunity to bash Clinton here.
And I fully understand, you know, that people just are anxious about seeing death on their TV screens.
And since when do Americans not like to watch violence?
You know, probably the most disappointing thing about my experience in Washington is the harshness of the discourse; is the zero-sum attitude. And I've tried to do my part by holding people with respect and to -- you know, talking about people in such a way that it doesn't degrade the process. ... I'll still try to do my best to treat people with respect. It's the best thing a President can do, it seems like to me. And the other leaders ought to be doing the same thing. If you disagree with a person, don't make it personal. Don't feel like you have to tear the other person down in order to make a political point.