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America's New War: United States Says Taliban Unacceptable

Aired September 21, 2001 - 05:06   ET

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.


THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
CAROL LIN, CNN ANCHOR: And right away, of course, we're getting reaction out of the White House, even though it is very early there this morning in the United States.

Kelly Wallace standing by there.

Kelly.

KELLY WALLACE, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Yes, Carol, very early, indeed. But I did get an administration official on the phone a short time ago.

No surprise, the Bush administration saying what the Taliban is saying is unacceptable, the official saying that President Bush made it, in his words, amazingly clear in his Thursday night address this, the demands for the Taliban are not only not open to negotiation, they are not open to debate.

As we know, President Bush telling Members of Congress that he wants the Taliban to turn over Osama bin Laden and all members of the Al Qaeda organization.

Secondly, in response to the Taliban saying that if the U.S. decides to attack Afghanistan, well then all Muslims should engage in a holy war against the United States. Carol, this official saying President Bush also made it very, very clear in his Thursday night speech that this is not a war against Islam, that this is not a holy war the U.S. and the international community are engaging in, that this is a war against terrorism.

This official saying the president, U.S. Secretary of State Colin Powell have been meeting with members of the Arab world, leaders of Muslim nations, to get that message out, and they will continue to do so.

Carol.

LIN: All right. Thank you very much, Kelly. We're going to have you stand by there, because I know you've got some interesting reaction to the president's speech last night, an unprecedented moment, perhaps, for this government.

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