July 3, 2014

On Independence Day a Letter to George W. Bush--In MY Opinion, You Are One of Our Greatest Presidents

IT MAKES SENSE TO ME

by Larry Peterson

I was prepared to write something about Independence Day;  however, and I am not sure why, I started to think of President George W. Bush.  I leaned back and simply stared at the keyboard.  I have always felt he had gotten a "bum rap".  Then I realized that I have never mentioned him in anything I have written. Why is that, I thought?  I came to the simple conclusion that it was because I was being a wimp.  Praising him was not the popular thing to do.

How pathetic is that on my part.   SO, I never wrote anything  about him---until now.  Therefore, I am writing this to him during this Independence Day week of 2014.  I want to thank him.  I also want to apologize for not defending his honor, integrity and patriotism sooner.  He was there when we needed him, make no mistake about it.

Dear President Bush,

I would like to start off by apologizing to you. You deserved better  from me. I should have been more vocal over the years in your defense. No president was ever confronted with what you were. No president, including Franklin D. Roosevelt, faced an unknown enemy such as you did.  Therefore I shall start by saying that I think that you were one of our greatest presidents. Why do I say that?  Because you brought a frightened and unsure nation together quickly and left no doubt to any of us and to the world who was in charge.  I do not care who might disagree.  I do not care because, the fact of the matter is, you lifted a nation and carried it forward..

You  were elected president without a majority of the popular vote and, after a contentious and vicious court battle, the presidency was decided by the Supreme Court.  Our legal system, although not perfect, worked and on January 20, 2001, you was sworn in as the 43rd president.  The fact is the liberal media, academia, the press and anyone left of center could not accept what had happened and were convinced the election was stolen and that Vice President Al Gore should have won. They still have not gotten over it. (Don't worry about them. They would have felt the same way no matter who was in your shoes.)

For any others reading this I must now back us up a few years.  During the 1990's Osama Bin Laden, the leader of al-Qaeda,  tried to take down the Twin Towers. That was in 1993.  A truck loaded with a 1200 pound bomb blew up in the basement of 2 World Trade Center at 12:18 P.M.  Six people were killed and over 1000 were injured. Over 50,000 people were evacuated from the World Trade Center and a roof over one of the PATH train tunnels collapsed.  The mission to bring down the towers had failed but the die had been cast.

Moving forward to August 7, 1998:  Explosions tore apart the United States Embassies in Nairobi, Kenya and in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania.  In Nairobi, over 200 people are killed and 4,000 wounded.  In Dar es Salaam, Tanzania, 12 more are killed and 85 more wounded.  Al-Qaeda  had a very "successful" day.

Finally, on October 12, 2000, the USS Cole is attacked in Yemen by terrorists from al-Qaeda.  The suicide bombers manage to blow a huge hole in the side of the ship and kill 17 of our Navy men while wounding 39 others.  This attack is the precursor to what will happen in less than a year.  During this time Osama Bin Laden had been more or less left to train and prepare his maniacal followers for future attacks against America.  "Sleepers" were already in the United States waiting to exact their evil missions.

September 11, 2001: 19 suicide bombers hijack four jumbo jets and manage to take down the Twin Towers in NYC, crash into the Pentagon in Washington, D.C and, if not for the courage of passengers (and soon to be American heroes) on Flight 93 over Pennsylvania, would have attacked either the White House or the Capitol Building.

This was the worst attack on the United States in its history.  Unlike Pearl Harbor, this was a cowardly sneak attack on civilians.  Men, women, dads, moms, uncles, aunts, cousins, brothers, sisters, and even children were murdered that fateful day.  Over 3000 died, the Twin Towers collapsed, the Pentagon was in flames and the nation was in shock.  Enter the President of the United States--you--George W. Bush.

You had been in office less than nine months.  But that evening you spoke to the nation from the Oval Office. That night America knew they had a leader. That night all Americans, even those suffering the grief of loved ones suddenly gone, were able to take in a breath of reassurance and resolve. You were the man responsible  for that. You held us together, assured us, and stretched a calming hand outward and across the entire American landscape.

Then came October 30, 2001. That was when you threw out the first pitch at Yankee Stadium for game 3 of the 2001 World Series. At that moment, as you stood on the mound looking up at the crowd, all Americans watching truly felt united as Americans. And it was you, George W. Bush, President of the United States, who inspired that sense of pride and unity.  God had you where you needed to be at the time you were needed.

So, THANK YOU for being there when we needed you. You represented each and every one of us with honor, dignity and all that we are proud to call AMERICAN.  In my book, you are one of the greatest presidents we have ever had.

God bless you ,
Larry Peterson
                                     
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