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6.30.2005

Bush Bombs with Troops 

What a difference a year and a half fighting in an quagmire makes.

President Bush attempted to make another rah rah patriotic speech to a favorable crowd, selecting Fort Bragg and 700 U.S. soldiers to help sell his war to a rapidly turning American Public.

Unfortunately for Bush and his propoganda team, no one told the soldiers.

The repetitive catch phrase laden speech did nothing to clear up the floundering "war President's" message nor did it give any justification for a war that has cost the lives of over 1750 of his hand selected audience's compatriots.

The silence of the crowd was deafening, especially when compared to Bush's previous speeches to the military.

Let's look at Bush's famous Thanksgiving Day speech in Iraq a short year and a half ago.

As Bremer prepared to read a presidential proclamation to the troops, he said, "Let's see if we've got anybody more senior here who can read the president's Thanksgiving speech. Is there anybody back there who's more senior than I?"

Bush then emerged, misty-eyed and wearing a U.S. Army exercise jacket, to a roaring ovation.

The shocked and elated soldiers jumped to their feet, pumped their fists in the air, roared with delight, and grabbed their cameras to snap photographs.


The Thanksgiving Day speech (or the Turkey in Tikrit as I like to call it) was interrupted over 13 times by raucus applause, cheering and hooahs. Bush could barely get through a paragraph without having to stop for the adoring applause of the troops. The speech, which was only ten paragraphs long took twice as long to give because of the constant interruptions (complete text of speech and applause interruptions).

Cut to present day. The White House team had alotted 40 minutes for Tuesday's 28 minute speech to accomodate all the expected cheering and clapping from the loyal troops. The President entered to dead silence. He proceeded to give his speech and the only applause came at the end when "over exuberrant" Bush staffers initiated a short burst of polite applause. The speech ran 28 minutes.

Spin control began immediately with claims that the soldiers had been told not to applaud. Later clarification proved that the soldiers had been told not to "carry on", a big difference between acting too boisteriously and clapping. There is nothing to indicate that this administration has ever discouraged any crowd from cheering this President and if this was such a somber speech it could have, and should have been delivered from the oval office.

It appears that Bush has lost one of his most ardent support systems, the military and for a "war president" that loss is devastating.

Contrast and compare.

Video of the Fort Bragg speech.

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