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Monday, September 3, 2007

VIDEO: President Bush with 750 Marines in Iraq!

I've always admired GWB for being a man of principle. Here is a video of him on a surprise visit to Iraq with about 750 Marines cheering him on! By the way, this is GWB's third visit to Iraq. Isn't he the mostest? I don't recall past presidents visiting the frontlines of past wars. And mind you, this is a huge deal: GWB just proved to everyone that he is not afraid to put his life on the line- three times -to show his support for the troops and their mission.

The Gettysburg of This War
This Bush visit could well mark a key turning point in the war in Iraq and the war on terror.

By Frederick W. Kagan

President Bush’s Labor Day visit to Iraq should have surprised no one who was paying attention. At such a critical point in the debate over Iraq policy, it was almost inconceivable that he would fly to and from Australia without stopping in Iraq. What was surprising was the precise location and nature of the visit. Instead of flying into Baghdad and surrounding himself with his generals and the Iraqi government, Bush flew to al Asad airfield, west of Ramadi, the capital of Anbar Province. He brought with him his secretaries of State and Defense, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, and the commander of U.S. Central Command. He was met at al Asad by General David Petraeus and Ambassador Ryan Crocker, as well as Iraqi Prime Minister Nuri Kemal al Maliki, Iraqi President Jalal Talabani, and Vice Presidents Adel Abdul Mehdi and Tariq al Hashemi. In other words, Bush called together all of the leading political and military figures in his administration and the Iraqi government in the heart of Anbar Province. If ever there was a sign that we have turned a corner in the fight against both al Qaeda in Iraq and the Sunni insurgency, this was it. Read more?

Bush sees possible troop cuts in Iraq.

Bush's trip was a dramatic move to steal the thunder from the Democratic Congress as it returns to Washington with fresh hopes of ending the unpopular war, now in its fifth year. Petraeus and Crocker will testify before lawmakers next week, and then Bush will announce how he intends to proceed in Iraq.

On Air Force One after leaving Iraq, Bush acknowledged that his comment about troop reductions had piqued interest. "Maybe I was intending to do that," the president said, sitting around a table with reporters in his plane's conference room as he flew to Australia to meet with Asia-Pacific leaders.

"If you look at my comments over the past eight months, it's gone from a security situation in the sense that we're either going to get out and there will be chaos, or more troops," the president said. "Now the situation has changed where I'm able to speculate on the hypothetical."

Still, Bush struck a defiant note about demands for bringing troops home.

Standing before troops cheering "hooah," Bush said decisions on force levels "will be based on a calm assessment by our military commanders on the conditions on the ground — not a nervous reaction by Washington politicians to poll results in the media.

"In other words," Bush said, "when we begin to draw down troops from Iraq, it will be from a position of strength and success, not from a position of fear and failure."

Once the stronghold of the Sunni Arab insurgency, Anbar province now is cited as a model for the rest of Iraq. Violence abated after Sunni tribal leaders and former insurgents broke with al-Qaida and teamed up with U.S. troops to hunt down extremists.

"Anbar is a huge province," Bush said. "It was once written off as lost. It is now one of the safest places in Iraq." Read more?