President Bush said Monday that "diplomacy takes time," but cautioned China that relations with the United States will suffer unless the 24 crew members of a U.S. spy plane are released soon.
"Every day that goes by increases the potential that our relations with China will be damaged," Bush told reporters during a Cabinet meeting to discuss his budget proposal.
As the standoff dragged into its second agonizing week, Bush repeated the message delivered by his national security team on Sunday interview shows.
Secretary of State Colin Powell, Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld and national security adviser Condoleezza Rice attended the Cabinet meeting as Bush was asked twice what he could do to end the showdown.
"All of us along this table understand that diplomacy takes time but there is a point... at which our relations with China become damaged," Bush said.
Read the rest of this article in the 4/10/01 Pilot Tribune.