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What they're saying

Published June 9, 2006

"Now Zarqawi has met his end, and this violent man will never murder again. Iraqis can be justly proud of their new government and its early steps to improve their security. And Americans can be enormously proud of the men and women of our armed forces, who worked tirelessly with their Iraqi counterparts to track down this brutal terrorist and put him out of business.

"We can expect the sectarian violence to continue. Yet the ideology of terror has lost one of its most visible and aggressive leaders."

- President Bush

"(President Bush is) not going to run around the room giving high-fives. Instead it's, 'What do we know, who's there, tell me about the operation.' And the follow-on conversation was more of that tone than jubilation."

- Tony Snow, White House spokesman

"Given the nature of the terrorist networks, really a network of networks, the death of Zarqawi, while enormously important, will not mean the end of all violence in that country. But let there be no doubt, the fact that he is dead is a significant victory in the battle against terrorism in that country, and I would say worldwide, because he had interests outside of Iraq. He was an integral part of the war on terror."

- Donald Rumsfeld, defense secretary

"We are dead-sure that assassination of any of the people (like al-Zarqawi) who are resisting will not ... end the resistance."

- Palestinian Foreign Minister Mahmoud Zahar, a hard-line Hamas leader

"The death of al-Zarqawi is a strike against al-Qaida in Iraq, and therefore a strike against al-Qaida everywhere. But we should have no illusions. We know that they will continue to kill. We know there are many, many obstacles to overcome, but they also know that our determination to defeat them is total."

- British Prime Minister Tony Blair

"Zarqawi is part of a story, and this story will not end when he is finished. It's not Iraq, it's a slaughterhouse."

- Dhia Majid, a university professor, whose family members were shot dead in Baghdad last summer

"Whenever there is a new al-Zarqawi, we will kill him."

- Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki

"The death of our leaders is life for us. It will only increase our persistence in continuing holy war so that the word of God will be supreme."

- Statement signed by "Abu Abdel-Rahman al-Iraqi," identified as the deputy "emir," or leader, of al-Qaida in Iraq. The top U.S. commander in Iraq, Gen. George Casey, said al-Iraqi was killed with Zarqawi.

"Every Arab and every Muslim feels the despotism of America. The enemy of my enemy is my friend. ... We are proud of Zarqawi."

- Khaled Samarra, a juice distributor in Hai al-Ramsey, Jordan, where Zarqawi was raised

"Al-Zarqawi's death is a huge victory in the war" on terrorism. "This is good news for all Muslims and people of all religions. He was killing people of all faiths."

- Afghanistan Defense Ministry spokesman Gen. Zahir Azimi

"We expected that he would be martyred. We hope that he will join other martyrs in heaven."

- Sayel al-Khalayleh, Zarqawi's brother

"As far as I'm concerned, he can rot in hell because that's where he is. He's not in paradise, that's for sure."

- Paul Bigley, a Briton whose brother Kenneth was kidnapped Sept. 16, 2004, and beheaded before a camera

Zarqawi's death "is no more likely to be a turning point in Iraq than was Saddam Hussein's capture in December 2003. Because while Zarqawi and his terrorist henchmen were responsible for a lot of horrific violence, the present state of anarchy is the result of very different causes. Much of the killing in Iraq today isn't the result of Zarqawi's men, but of Sunni and Shiite militias engaged in a big fight for control of neighborhoods, towns, cities, and the resources they control."

- Brookings senior fellow Ivo Daalder, a White House staffer in the Clinton administration

- Associated Press, Knight Ridder Newspapers, New York Times

[Last modified June 9, 2006, 06:31:49]

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