Bush: Early signs good for Iraq strategy

April 20, 2007 at 4:59 PM
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EAST GRAND RAPIDS, Mich., April 20 (UPI) -- U.S. President George Bush, in a speech Friday at a Michigan high school, said that early signs show that his new Iraq strategy is working.

Bush visited East Grand Rapids, hometown of former U.S. President Gerald Ford and a conservative stronghold.

In a speech to students and the World Affairs Council of Western Michigan, Bush said that it has only been two months since Gen. David Petraeus took command in Iraq and the troop buildup is not yet complete.

"He reports that it will be later this year before we can judge the potential of success," Bush said. "Yet the first indications are beginning to emerge, and they show that so far, the operation is meeting expectations. There are still horrific attacks in Iraq, such as the bombings in Baghdad on Wednesday, but the direction of the fight is beginning to shift."

The president said that both Baghdad and the Sunni stronghold of Anbar province are becoming more secure, that local residents are becoming more willing to work with the U.S. military and Iraqi security.

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