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President Bush "Dishonors the Memory of 9/11," Prof. Ken Bode Writes

September 15, 2006

ken bode crop.jpgSeptember 15, 2006, Greencastle, Ind. - "The Bush administration used the commemorative events and sites marking the fifth anniversary of 9/11 as nothing more than a series of props to massage his midterm election message," writes Ken Bode in today's Indianapolis Star. "Doing so, he just raised more questions," adds DePauw University's Eugene S. Pulliam Distinguished Visiting Professor of Journalism.

In his weekly op-ed, Bode asks, "If it really is a battle so exalted as the clash of civilizations, why did we try to fight it with Donald Rumsfeld's smaller Army? Why did we not pull together a genuine, committed coalition of allies? Why were Americans not asked to sacrifice, not even taxed to support a war that is costing $3 billion a week and driving up our staggering national debt?" And, the professor wonders, why has the hunt for Osama bin Laden been scaled back? And how can the president claim "America does not torture," when an investigation found differently? george w bush july 2005.jpg

Bode, a former CNN and NBC correspondent, notes, "In the week leading up to the 9/11 anniversary, Bush said he was confident that things were getting better in Iraq, that only a small number of Iraqis are engaged in sectarian violence. To whom is he speaking? Reports from the military in Iraq confirm the reality that the insurgency is becoming more sophisticated, better organized, making more and better bombs. There were 34,131 insurgent attacks last year compared to 26,496 in 2004. This year will top out much higher."

The professor accuses Vice President Dick Cheney of "politiciz[ing] the memorial event at the Pentagon by reprising the GOP's election-year theme that Iraqi war opponents are appeasers to a 'gang of fanatics trying to murder their way to power.' Then, on Meet the Press, Cheney affirmed that even if he had known there were no weapons of mass destruction in Iraq, 'If we had to do it over again we'd do exactly the same thing.' Two days later, Bush echoed Cheney, saying, 'Let me just tell you that I've never been more convinced that the decisions I've made are the right decisions.'" 

Dr. Bode concludes, "Bush dishonors the memory of 9/11 and of those who died that day by twisting it to his purposes in the midterm elections. Once again the GOP will seek to wring political victory from the terrorism theme, though the latest polls from NBC News indicate that two-thirds of the public do not see Iraq as the key to fighting terrorists. Bush and Cheney lead the parade. Rumsfeld follows grumping about 'Appeasers!' and 'Islamo-fascists!' Then comes House Majority Leader John Boehner, asking his deplorable question, 'Are the Democrats more interested in protecting America or the terrorists?' Bush says we must put aside our differences. The very idea makes my head swim."

Read the complete column at College News.org.

Ken Bode's column last week also examined the five year anniversary of the terrorist attacks on America. Learn more in this previous story.

Source: Indianapolis Star

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