Remember George W. Bush? Before there was You Know Who, the son of the 41st American president was progressives’ Enemy Number One. He oversaw an unjustified war bolstered by bogus intel. He trampled civil liberties. He let a major city get nearly destroyed by weather. He spoke bad. But nowadays, after four years of the guy who would almost certainly sell out his own kids to save his hide, he seems more like Mr. Rogers. He’ll even troll Trump — albeit on the anniversary of the tragic event that he once exploited for power. In fact, that pretty much sums 43 up, though he’s still not even in the same universe as 45.
Bush II’s contradictory nature was on fine display during a speech he delivered in Dallas on Wednesday. At an event looking at the state of democracy and the future of elections in a (possibly) post-Trump America, the former president strongly condemned Russia and its bloody but flailing invasion of Ukraine. But then he made a Freudian slip for the ages.
Speaking in Dallas this afternoon, former President George. W Bush made a significant verbal slip-up while discussing the war in Ukraine.
He tried referencing what he described as the “wholly unjustified and brutal invasion” — but said Iraq, instead of Ukraine. pic.twitter.com/tw0VNJzKmE
— Michael Williams (@michaeldamianw) May 19, 2022
Bush was discussing how Vladimir Putin stifles dissent and imprisons dissenters. “The result is an absence of checks and balances in Russia, and the decision of one man to launch a wholly unjustified and brutal invasion of Iraq,” Bush said. Yes, he said Iraq. But he quickly caught the faux pas, telling the crowd, “I mean, of Ukraine.”
Almost 20 years ago, in the wake of the September 11 attacks, Bush and his administration claimed that Iraq was harboring weapons of mass destruction. They weren’t. But Bush claimed they were, and used the nation’s anger and trauma over the biggest terrorist attack in the nation’s history to justify a long and costly war, which led to somewhere between 150,000 and over a million violent deaths. He later became a painter.
Still, the George W. Bush story may be the most extreme example of “hey, it could be worse.”
(Via Dallas Morning News)