THE WHITE HOUSE
Office of the Press Secretary
September 12, 2001
REMARKS BY THE PRESIDENT
WHILE TOURING DAMAGE AT THE PENTAGON
5:53 P.M. EDT
THE PRESIDENT: I am so grateful to the people who are working
here. We’re here to say thanks to not only the workers on this
site, but the workers who are doing the same work in New York
City. I want to say thanks to the folks who have given blood to
the Red Cross. I want to say thanks for the hundreds of thousands
of Americans who pray for the victims and their families.
Secretary Rumsfeld told me, when I talked to him,
that he felt the blast shake the Pentagon — even though he was
on the other side of the building, the building rocked. And now
I know why.
Coming here makes me sad, on the one hand; it also
makes me angry. Our country will, however, not be cowed by terrorists,
by people who don’t share the same values we share, by people
who are willing to destroy people’s lives because we embrace freedom.
The nation mourns, but our government will go on, the country
will function. We are on high alert for possible activity.
But coming here confirms what the Secretary and
I both know, that this is a great nation. People here working
hard prove it; people out here working their hearts out to answer
families’ questions, to remove the rubble and debris from this
office. I want to thank everybody not only on this site, but all
across America, for responding so generously, so kindly, in their
prayers, in their contributions of love and their willingness
to help in any way they can.
END 5:55 P.M. EDT