One particularly chilling exchange had to be when Bush was asked about whether God was a part of his plans to thwart Al-Qaeda:
"Do you believe that the hand of God is guiding you in this war on terror?Does anyone have an idea which part of the Bible that "log in my eye" quote is from? I'm sure that this will play well with the Fundamentalist Muslims out there, a disenfranchised lot who already think that the War on Terror is really a War on Islam. The President's God believes in peace and freedom, unlike theirs? This is too fuct up to believe. (I try very hard to avoid swearing needlessly because I don't want to be censored by archaic filtering software!)
THE PRESIDENT: Listen, I think that God -- that my relationship with God is a very personal relationship. And I turn to the good Lord for strength. And I turn to the good Lord for guidance. I turn to the good Lord for forgiveness.
But the God I know is not one that -- the God I know is one that promotes peace and freedom. But I get great sustenance from my personal relationship. That doesn't make me think I'm a better person than you are, by the way. Because one of the great admonitions in the Good Book is, don't try to take a speck out of your eye if I've got a log in my own."
It would have been a lot better to say "We all worship the same God of love and peace" instead of trying to distinguish between the merits of Yahweh and Allah. By rambling incoherently without considering the impact of his words, Bush is putting his troops stationed in Iraq at unnecessary risk. The founding fathers wanted to keep the church and state separate for a reason. Bush should know better than to provide Al-Qaeda with notable quotes for their recruitment pamphlets.
I wonder if this was truly in the job description when George W. found the "Help Wanted" ad in the Washington Post:
"My job is to do my job and make the decisions that I think are important for our country and for the world."Does this mean that Bush is in charge of deciding what's best for the planet? This is a scary thought but I'm sure he must have meant that the choices America makes will inevitably impact the rest of the world.
George W. Bush may not worry about his reptutation--in the same interview, he said " History will judge what I'm about..."--but he is facing a tough re-election battle versus Sen. John Kerry and I'm sure that the American public won't forget the pain they feel each time one of their sons or daughters gets killed in Najaf or Baghdad by an AK-47 round. Bush would be wise to remember that history gets written by the victors, and it looks like winning the War on Terror may be an impossible dream. Police have been trying to thwart crime for millenia but there are still crooks out there and there will always be.
Terrorism is also known as asymetrical warfare by military strategists, and due to America's immense military might, conventional attacks are ineffective. Anyone who seeks war with America has no choice but to strike covertly, and the efficiency of this mode of battle has already been established.
Instead of just trying to chop down the forest, we should try to prevent new seedlings from sprouting. By making amends for our past crimes against Islam (ie. supporting repressive regimes like the Al-Saud Wahhabbist "Royal" family, a major human rights violator), perhaps future generations won't decide to take up arms against us.
What do you think? Will the War on Terror ever end? Does Bush have the moral high ground? Please comment below.