Bush "envious" of troops in Afghanistan, calls their work "romantic"

George W. Bush videoconferenced with military and civilian personnel in Afghanistan Thursday morning. "I must say, I'm a little envious," he said. "If I were slightly younger and not employed here, I think it would be a fantastic experience to be on the front lines of helping this young democracy succeed."

When Bush was younger and not employed in the White House, of course, he had the opportunity to be on the front lines. During the Vietnam War, Bush landed a pilot's spot, thanks to strings pulled by Texas' Democratic lieutenant governor Ben Barnes, in a so-called "Champagne Unit" of the Texas Air National Guard. In his application for the six-year stint, Bush checked the box that read, "'I 'do not' volunteer for overseas.'" In 1972, Bush dropped off the map -- missing his military physical and months of duty.

Bush also told the assembled contractors and soldiers that their work in Afghanistan "must be exciting... in some ways romantic." But with a million pounds of metal raining down on the landscape in the first nine months of 2007, "alarmingly high" civilian casualties (350 killed by coalition forces and 438 by insurgents, as of last September) and the deaths of nearly 500 US troops there so far, perhaps that "romance" looks a bit difference on the other end of the teleconference screen.

Jeff Fecke contributed to this post.

Pictured: George W. Bush action figure by Merit International

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Well put. I can't figure out why these outrageous comments by Bush have been left largely untouched. Oh wait, yes I can.

Thanks for doing your part to highlight it.