November 4 , 2003 Two days ago in Iraq, the United States lost 15 soldiers in a missile attack on an Army CH-47 Chinook helicopter. Twenty more American servicemen were wounded. All on board were heading to Baghdad, on their way to the airport and a well-deserved break from combat service. Today, we all mourn their loss, and offer our heartfelt prayers for the victims and their families. But, Mr. Speaker, we will not run. The United States will stay in Iraq along with our coalition partners until the work there is done . Until innocent Iraqis are no longer threatened by thuggish holdovers from the old regime; Until state-sponsored murderers from neighboring countries no longer enter Iraq to terrorize its people; Until the citizens of Iraq have a democratic government to set their own course among the free nations of the earth . And until the nexus of weapons of mass destruction, international terrorism, and outlaw regimes can no longer threaten the United States from Iraq. These things these long overdue and wonderful things are going to happen. Let there be no mistaking in this or any capitol around the globe: justice is coming to the Middle East, with hope and freedom riding close behind. We have always known that delivering these basic human rights to a region unfamiliar with them will be hard, but that is our mission and one worth the sacrifice. Just as it has been since we began debating the removal of Saddam Hussein from Iraq, this war remains a test of America's moral leadership in the world. Are we serious about destroying international terrorism? Are we serious about holding outlaw regimes accountable for their sponsorship of it? Are we resolved to see our mission through to the end, despite the disproportionate costs and risks we must assume? And finally, is human freedom worth fighting for? The answer to all of these, of course, is yes. And so, we will not run. No matter how perilous our journey, we will stand and fight. And humanity will win. Iraq will be free. Terrorism will fall. Evil will be turned back. And the Chinook 15, Mr. Speaker, will not have died in vain.