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William Rivers Pitt | Bush, Flying Shoes and Remembering the Truth

Saturday, October 04, 2014 By William Rivers Pitt, Truthout | Op-Ed
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2014 1004 bush swFormer President Bush ducking to avoid being hit by the two shoes thrown by Al-Baghdadia TV journalist Muntadhar al-Zaidi at a press conference. Baghdad, Iraq, December 14, 2008. (Image: US Federal Government)Remember the guy in Iraq who threw his shoes at George W. Bush? It was December of 2008, during a press conference people only remember now because of the footwear that was flying.

As it turns out, however, that was actually a genuinely weighty presser.

Why?

Allow me, if I may, to paint a picture.

Imagine a man, a child of exceeding privilege, who stumblebumbed his way to a business degree from a prestigious institution of higher learning he had no business attending on the merits, but for his last name, and the bankroll attached to it. He had trouble with drugs, and booze, and then trouble with military service, and then sullied the reputation of that aforementioned learning institution by running every single business he laid hands on into the ground.

Yet, somehow, by the magic of money, connections, and Jesus - to whom this child of privilege stapled himself in his less-inebriated 40s - the man who earned nothing on his own, barely dragged himself to his degree, and ruined every enterprise he touched as if he was King Midas in reverse, one day discovered he was the Governor of Texas...and then, by dint of the single most broken election in American history, and thanks entirely to a Supreme Court decision that will knock boots with Dred Scot for all eternity, this son of privilege C-student failure of a businessman became President of The United States, and we as a nation will be digging out from under that sulfurous confluence of circumstances for another half-dozen generations to come, if we're lucky.

Yeah, I'm talking about George, the fellow who used September 11 against you and I to begin the ongoing ravaging of civil rights in the United States, to win some elections, and most importantly, to slap the country into a war in Iraq that has not ended, but made his friends (Dick Cheney, Halliburton, KBR, United Defense, The Carlyle Group, and oh yeah, his dad) filthy rich. Most people consider George a failed president, but I vehemently disagree. According to the goals laid out by the paymasters who created him - cut taxes for rich people, make government dysfunctional, and loot the Treasury by way of war - George was the single most successful president in the entire history of the country.

See, George and his friends invaded Iraq as part of their PNAC master plan to take over and topple every other nation in the region (aside from Israel, of course), and had no qualms whatsoever about using fear against the American people - and about using the men and women in the armed forces - to do it. But here's the thing: George is stupid, and the people who barnstormed into power behind him were also stupid, even the special ones who still get slots on the Sunday talk shows despite being flagrant war criminals. On top of being brazenly stupid, they were then and still remain wreathed in enough hubris to make the old Greek gods blush and stammer.

And millions were killed, maimed or displaced. The nation George was tasked to defend lost trillions, and spiraled into an economic meltdown that has not yet ended. Best of all, the mess he and his friends made in the Middle East has only gotten messier, and more people are going to die because of it.

So here's the funny part: I give you George W. Bush, speaking to Fox News  on Thursday:

Former President George W. Bush, who before leaving office warned against withdrawing U.S. troops from Iraq too early, told Fox News that America has since learned the "lesson" that Iraqis are not yet capable of providing for their own security.

"The Iraqi people obviously are going to have to make a decision as to whether or not they want to live in peace," the former president said. "They're not ready to do it on their own, and that's the lesson we've learned recently."

Bush, in 2007, had delivered a prescient warning about what might happen if U.S. troops withdrew too early. He said at the time this would risk "mass killings on a horrific scale" and potentially draw U.S. troops back into the country.

Asked Thursday how he knew, Bush said: "I know the nature of the enemy."

Yes, the great sage, who knew all the way back in 2007 that abandoning the plan to make Iraq a permanent US military base, no matter how high the casualty lists grew, no matter the staggering cost, was a bad idea. Only Fox could make George W. Bush sound like Yoda.

MSNBC had an even cuter take: "Former President George W. Bush is pointing to the resurgence of violence in Iraq as validating his belief that American troops should have stayed in that war-torn country instead of withdrawing in 2011."

The same man who signed a deal with the Iraqi government in 2008 that required the withdrawal of American forces in 2011.

How do I know that? I know that because he gave a press conference to announce it on December 14th, 2008, which would have been just another press conference, except during this press conference, an Iraqi journalist named Muntadhar al-Zaidi threw his shoes at Bush while roaring, "This is a farewell, you dog!"

You probably don't remember that the 12/14/08 presser was intended to announce George W. Bush's agreement to withdraw troops from Iraq, but half-developed life forms on the moons of Neptune heard about the guy who threw his shoes at him, as did everyone on this planet.

So, yeah, it was during the 2008 shoe-chuck presser that George announced his agreement with the Iraqi government to pull out US troops...and it was on Thursday that he got up on his hind legs and said President Obama should not have done what he agreed to do while dodging Hush Puppies on live television.

Someone is going to have to come up with a better term for "shameless." The word has been burned out completely by stupid people with blood on their hands who still somehow wind up on television.

Copyright, Truthout. May not be reprinted without permission.

William Rivers Pitt

William Rivers Pitt is a senior editor and lead columnist at Truthout. He is also a New York Times and internationally bestselling author of three books: War on Iraq: What Team Bush Doesn't Want You to Know, The Greatest Sedition Is Silence and House of Ill Repute: Reflections on War, Lies, and America's Ravaged Reputation. His fourth book, The Mass Destruction of Iraq: Why It Is Happening, and Who Is Responsible, co-written with Dahr Jamail, is available now on Amazon. He lives and works in New Hampshire.

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William Rivers Pitt | Bush, Flying Shoes and Remembering the Truth

Saturday, October 04, 2014 By William Rivers Pitt, Truthout | Op-Ed
  • font size decrease font size decrease font size increase font size increase font size
  • Print

2014 1004 bush swFormer President Bush ducking to avoid being hit by the two shoes thrown by Al-Baghdadia TV journalist Muntadhar al-Zaidi at a press conference. Baghdad, Iraq, December 14, 2008. (Image: US Federal Government)Remember the guy in Iraq who threw his shoes at George W. Bush? It was December of 2008, during a press conference people only remember now because of the footwear that was flying.

As it turns out, however, that was actually a genuinely weighty presser.

Why?

Allow me, if I may, to paint a picture.

Imagine a man, a child of exceeding privilege, who stumblebumbed his way to a business degree from a prestigious institution of higher learning he had no business attending on the merits, but for his last name, and the bankroll attached to it. He had trouble with drugs, and booze, and then trouble with military service, and then sullied the reputation of that aforementioned learning institution by running every single business he laid hands on into the ground.

Yet, somehow, by the magic of money, connections, and Jesus - to whom this child of privilege stapled himself in his less-inebriated 40s - the man who earned nothing on his own, barely dragged himself to his degree, and ruined every enterprise he touched as if he was King Midas in reverse, one day discovered he was the Governor of Texas...and then, by dint of the single most broken election in American history, and thanks entirely to a Supreme Court decision that will knock boots with Dred Scot for all eternity, this son of privilege C-student failure of a businessman became President of The United States, and we as a nation will be digging out from under that sulfurous confluence of circumstances for another half-dozen generations to come, if we're lucky.

Yeah, I'm talking about George, the fellow who used September 11 against you and I to begin the ongoing ravaging of civil rights in the United States, to win some elections, and most importantly, to slap the country into a war in Iraq that has not ended, but made his friends (Dick Cheney, Halliburton, KBR, United Defense, The Carlyle Group, and oh yeah, his dad) filthy rich. Most people consider George a failed president, but I vehemently disagree. According to the goals laid out by the paymasters who created him - cut taxes for rich people, make government dysfunctional, and loot the Treasury by way of war - George was the single most successful president in the entire history of the country.

See, George and his friends invaded Iraq as part of their PNAC master plan to take over and topple every other nation in the region (aside from Israel, of course), and had no qualms whatsoever about using fear against the American people - and about using the men and women in the armed forces - to do it. But here's the thing: George is stupid, and the people who barnstormed into power behind him were also stupid, even the special ones who still get slots on the Sunday talk shows despite being flagrant war criminals. On top of being brazenly stupid, they were then and still remain wreathed in enough hubris to make the old Greek gods blush and stammer.

And millions were killed, maimed or displaced. The nation George was tasked to defend lost trillions, and spiraled into an economic meltdown that has not yet ended. Best of all, the mess he and his friends made in the Middle East has only gotten messier, and more people are going to die because of it.

So here's the funny part: I give you George W. Bush, speaking to Fox News  on Thursday:

Former President George W. Bush, who before leaving office warned against withdrawing U.S. troops from Iraq too early, told Fox News that America has since learned the "lesson" that Iraqis are not yet capable of providing for their own security.

"The Iraqi people obviously are going to have to make a decision as to whether or not they want to live in peace," the former president said. "They're not ready to do it on their own, and that's the lesson we've learned recently."

Bush, in 2007, had delivered a prescient warning about what might happen if U.S. troops withdrew too early. He said at the time this would risk "mass killings on a horrific scale" and potentially draw U.S. troops back into the country.

Asked Thursday how he knew, Bush said: "I know the nature of the enemy."

Yes, the great sage, who knew all the way back in 2007 that abandoning the plan to make Iraq a permanent US military base, no matter how high the casualty lists grew, no matter the staggering cost, was a bad idea. Only Fox could make George W. Bush sound like Yoda.

MSNBC had an even cuter take: "Former President George W. Bush is pointing to the resurgence of violence in Iraq as validating his belief that American troops should have stayed in that war-torn country instead of withdrawing in 2011."

The same man who signed a deal with the Iraqi government in 2008 that required the withdrawal of American forces in 2011.

How do I know that? I know that because he gave a press conference to announce it on December 14th, 2008, which would have been just another press conference, except during this press conference, an Iraqi journalist named Muntadhar al-Zaidi threw his shoes at Bush while roaring, "This is a farewell, you dog!"

You probably don't remember that the 12/14/08 presser was intended to announce George W. Bush's agreement to withdraw troops from Iraq, but half-developed life forms on the moons of Neptune heard about the guy who threw his shoes at him, as did everyone on this planet.

So, yeah, it was during the 2008 shoe-chuck presser that George announced his agreement with the Iraqi government to pull out US troops...and it was on Thursday that he got up on his hind legs and said President Obama should not have done what he agreed to do while dodging Hush Puppies on live television.

Someone is going to have to come up with a better term for "shameless." The word has been burned out completely by stupid people with blood on their hands who still somehow wind up on television.

Copyright, Truthout. May not be reprinted without permission.

William Rivers Pitt

William Rivers Pitt is a senior editor and lead columnist at Truthout. He is also a New York Times and internationally bestselling author of three books: War on Iraq: What Team Bush Doesn't Want You to Know, The Greatest Sedition Is Silence and House of Ill Repute: Reflections on War, Lies, and America's Ravaged Reputation. His fourth book, The Mass Destruction of Iraq: Why It Is Happening, and Who Is Responsible, co-written with Dahr Jamail, is available now on Amazon. He lives and works in New Hampshire.