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pd15ap96 Exchange With Reporters Prior to Discussions With Labour Party Leader...
<DOC> [Weekly Compilation of Presidential Documents] [frwais.access.gpo.gov] [Page i-ii] Monday, April 15, 1996 Volume 32--Number 15 Pages 623-656 Contents [[Page i]] Weekly Compilation of Presidential Documents [[Page ii]] Addresses and Remarks See also Bill Signings; Bill Vetoes Delaware, aircraft tragedy in Croatia, remarks in Dover--628 Easter Egg Roll--630 Oklahoma, University of Central Oklahoma in Edmond--623 Radio address--627 ``Retirement Savings and Security Act,'' announcement--648 Secretary of Commerce Ronald H. Brown, funeral--640 Bill Signings Line Item Veto Act Remarks--635 Statement--637 Waiving certain enrollment requirements, statement--640 Bill Vetoes Partial birth abortion legislation Message--645 Remarks--643 Communications to Congress See also Bill Vetoes Intelligence community budget, letter transmitting report--640 Liberian civil war, letter reporting--652 Communications to Federal Agencies Cooperation with Mexico on drug control, memorandum--631 Designation of Acting Secretary of Commerce, memorandum--627 Executive Orders Amendment to Executive Order No. 11880 (designation of officers of the Department of Commerce to act as Secretary of Commerce)--626 Interviews With the News Media Exchanges with reporters in the Oval Office--635, 638, 653 Letters and Messages Joseph Cardinal Bernardin on partial birth abortion legislation, letter--646 Meetings With Foreign Leaders Greece, Prime Minister Simitis--638 United Kingdom, Labour Party leader Blair--653 Proclamations National Child Abuse Prevention Month--634 National D.A.R.E. Day--647 National Former Prisoner of War Recognition Day--630 National Pay Inequity Awareness Day--651 Pan American Day and Pan American Week--652 Statements by the President See Bill Signings Supplementary Materials Acts approved by the President--656 Checklist of White House press releases--655 Digest of other White House announcements--654 Nominations submitted to the Senate--655 WEEKLY COMPILATION OF ------------------------------ PRESIDENTIAL DOCUMENTS Published every Monday by the Office of the Federal Register, National Archives and Records Administration, Washington, DC 20408, the Weekly Compilation of Presidential Documents contains statements, messages, and other Presidential materials released by the White House during the preceding week. The Weekly Compilation of Presidential Documents is published pursuant to the authority contained in the Federal Register Act (49 Stat. 500, as amended; 44 U.S.C. Ch. 15), under regulations prescribed by the Administrative Committee of the Federal Register, approved by the President (37 FR 23607; 1 CFR Part 10). Distribution is made only by the Superintendent of Documents, Government Printing Office, Washington, DC 20402. The Weekly Compilation of Presidential Documents will be furnished by mail to domestic subscribers for $80.00 per year ($137.00 for mailing first class) and to foreign subscribers for $93.75 per year, payable to the Superintendent of Documents, Government Printing Office, Washington, DC 20402. The charge for a single copy is $3.00 ($3.75 for foreign mailing). There are no restrictions on the republication of material appearing in the Weekly Compilation of Presidential Documents. [[Page 623]] <DOC> [Weekly Compilation of Presidential Documents] [frwais.access.gpo.gov] [Page 623-626] Monday, April 15, 1996 Volume 32--Number 15 Pages 623-656 Week Ending Friday, April 12, 1996 Remarks at the University of Central Oklahoma in Edmond, Oklahoma April 5, 1996 Thank you very much. Governor Nigh, Mrs. Nigh, Congressman Istook, Mr. Mayor, Mr. Speaker, the other distinguished guests on the platform, and to the students and the other members of the University of Central Oklahoma community and family, Governor David Walters and Mrs. Walters, and to all the people who are here with me today because of the mission we are on. Let me say it's good to be back here. I heard the students laughing when Governor Nigh announced that I was here 8 years ago, and I was thinking, most of the students were in grade school the last time I was here. [Laughter] Later this year I'll be eligible for my AARP card-- [laughter]--but I'm still glad to be here. As all of you know, and as the Governor said, I came here today to Oklahoma to pay my respects nearly a year after the tragedy of the bombing, to attend a memorial service for the families of those who were victims, for the survivors and their families, and others who were Federal employees who worked there, and to help your State officials to dedicate the beginning of the child care center which will be rebuilt, which is a remarkable accomplishment, and to meet with this scholarship committee, which informed me of the results which were just announced to you by Governor Nigh. And it is coming at an especially sad but ironically appropriate time, just a couple of days after we suffered the loss of our Secretary of Commerce and a number of fine Federal employees--some of them very young, barely older than some of the students here--a number of fine U.S. military personnel, and some of our country's most outstanding business leaders in that plane crash in Bosnia. I would like to make just two points briefly. I know it's cold and you've been waiting a long time, but I ask you to reflect on two things. That plane went down in Bosnia full of people who have worked very hard to help the American people fulfill their potential. Ron Brown was immensely proud of the fact that more than any other Commerce Secretary and Commerce Department in our history, they had been instrumental in opening new avenues for people to buy American products and American services and create jobs for Americans, so that when young people get out of college they can get jobs, good jobs, jobs that pay better than average, jobs with a good future. But these people went to Bosnia with only the most modest expectation of any personal gain for themselves. They went there to try to use the power of the American economy to help bring opportunity to the Bosnians so that peace wouldn't fall apart and instead would take hold. But the main thing I want to say is that my friend Ron Brown, who grew up in Harlem, never forgot where he came from and spent his lifetime trying to help other people realize their dreams. When our hearts were breaking over what happened in Oklahoma City--it was this madness that somebody for some perverted political purpose could take everyone else's life away from them who weren't even standing in the way, they just happened to show up in the wrong time in the wrong place. And so I would like to say two things to you today. First of all, all of us need to ask ourselves a year later, what are our responsibilities not only to help the children, who were tragically robbed of their parents in Oklahoma City, to fulfill their dreams but to provide that opportunity for all people? I've worked very hard to expand the quality and availability of college loans and the college scholarships for children of modest incomes. I'm still hoping we'll pass a balanced budget amendment [[Page 624]] in our legislation in this Congress that will include a tax cut that gives families a deduction for the cost of college tuition, because I think it's the best possible tax break we could give America, to do that. But this is not a political issue. Every American has an interest in seeing every other American be able to live out their dreams. And we have certain positive responsibilities, just like Ron Brown believed that we did, to try to do that, and access to higher education is, perhaps, the most important one. The second thing I want to ask you about, especially the young people, is to think about where do we go from here. And as horrible and personal as the bombing of the Federal building was to you, I want you to try to step back a minute and put it in a larger context. It was, first and foremost, an act of terror. What is terror? Terror is when someone, allegedly for some philosophical or political reason, believes they have the right to take innocent lives, not people who are fighting them in war, not people who are wearing uniforms, not people who are staring at them across a battle line but just to take an action that will take the lives of people who just happen to be in the wrong place at the wrong time. And we are seeing that all over the world, and you see it in two ways. First, you see homegrown terror, people in your own country that are so profoundly alienated they think they have a right to do this. You've been reading about the Unabomber in recent days. That's an example of that. You remember when the religious fanatics in Japan broke open poison gas in the Japanese subway and killed a lot of people and a few days later could have killed hundreds more, but miraculously, the second attempt was thwarted. That's an example of that. And then you have imported terrorism, where people come in from other countries, and they try to wreck your life to pursue their political ambitions. An example of that is the World Trade Center bombing. And it's really tough when they're coming from right next door, which is what is tearing the heart out of the people in the Middle East now. And you remember how recently we saw the people there--innocent, not only innocent Israelis, innocent Palestinians, innocent Moroccans, little children just blown away because some crackpot believes that it is a legitimate way to pursue your political philosophy to kill innocent civilians. Now what I want to tell you today is--and I want you to think about this, especially the young people--the world you're living in and the world we're moving toward is going to offer you more opportunities to succeed, if you have a good education, than any generation of Americans has ever known. But the same forces that offer you those opportunities to succeed offer people opportunities to commit terrorist acts. And therefore, we must be more vigilant, more active, more determined than ever before. Why is that? Well, just think about it. What's the world like now? Computer technology can now interface people all over the world. I'm trying to get every classroom and every library and every school in America connected to the Internet by the end of the decade. I know right now there are public schools in America where young junior high school students can get on the Internet and do research out of libraries in Asia and Australia, all over the world. Well, that also means that terrorist networks can get information about how to build bombs and how to wreak mischief if you just know how to find the right home page. We've got to have open borders in order to move products and services around the world, in order for people to travel around the world. We have to be able to get around in a hurry. The more open the borders are, the more open the information is, the more vulnerable we are to things like money laundering and terrorists moving out of countries. Now, that should not frighten you. The good news is we are reducing the traditional threats to your security and your future. Communism has failed. The cold war is over. We have agreed to treaties that will reduce by two-thirds the number of nuclear weapons that existed when the cold war was at its height. And for the first time in the history of nuclear weapons, for the last 2 years there's not a single nuclear weapon pointed at any American citizen. That is the good news. [[Page 625]] That's the good news. But in an open world of easy information, quick technology, and rapid movements, we are all more vulnerable than we used to be to terrorism and its interconnected allies, organized crime, drug running, and the spread of weapons of destruction. And so I spend a lot of my time as your President trying to think about what we can do to minimize those dangers. We've done a lot to try to fight terrorism. We've done a lot to try to fight drug trafficking. We've done a lot to try to fight the money laundering that goes along with all this, to try to help other countries stand up to organized crime, because nobody is immune from this. You see it in all of the places I cited. You see it when those terrible bombs go off in London. I saw it in Latin America where we have honest law enforcement officials in Colombia trying to help us crack the Colombian
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