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Iraq Update

By: Associated Press
By: Associated Press

The White House says he'll do so in a speech to the nation Thursday night at 8 p.m. CST from the deck of the aircraft carrier Abraham Lincoln, steaming home after serving in the Iraq war.

Press Secretary Ari Fleischer says the president was advised by General Tommy Franks, his commander in Iraq, that work there has entered a "new phase."

However, Fleischer says the speech will not legally mark an end to hostilities, because US forces in Iraq are still being shot at.

And he stresses Bush will not be declaring victory, because major objectives like finding banned weapons and restoring stability have yet to be achieved.

Fleischer says the Lincoln will be hundreds of miles out in the Pacific when the president lands on a small, fixed-wing aircraft. After delivering the speech, he'll remain overnight, but depart early Friday before the ship arrives at the San Diego Naval base.


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