Knox vs. Fort Dix
By Bridget Gibson
The trickling of military documents during the past week
has done little to clear up the mysteries that have surrounded
the service that George W. Bush so "proudly" gave
during the Vietnam War. If anything, it has shown that we
needed to know the answers to these questions long ago - long
before November 4, 2000.
With 539 Americans dead on the sands of Iraq and more than
110,000 still at risk, with $166,000,000,000 committed and
more needed, we should have been told the whole story.
Even though this is late, it is still relevant. It is perhaps
more relevant than ever. This man who now calls himself a
"War President" must be examined ever more closely
than before. The facts must be placed in the sunshine where
they should have lived all along. The darkness that has shrouded
every movement of this man and his administration has caused
losses inestimable to far too many.
George Walker Bush (born on July 6, 1946, in New Haven,
Connecticut) is the son of Congressman (1967-1971) George
Herbert Walker Bush (later our 41st president). His grandfather,
Prescott Bush had been a Senator from Connecticut from 1952
through 1963. The Bush family has money, lots of money. Their
money was passed down for several generations and more was
made from oilfields and banks. There are news articles that
state with certainty that the Bush family made a tremendous
addition to their wealth from the use of slave labor (from
the Auschwitz death camp) at the Silesian coal and steel mines
in Poland during Hitler's occupation there.
With family connections like these, I'm sure it was easy
to get any favor that was asked.
From 1956 through 1968, 36,152 military personnel had died
in the Vietnam War. The total casualties would eventually
The records show that the Air Force lost 2,584, the Army
lost 38,209, the Coast Guard lost seven, the Marine Corps
lost 14,838 and the Navy lost 2,555.
With those odds and branches of services - with even the
Coast Guard losing lives - the safest place to be was obvious
- the National Guard.
How, on May 28, 1968, did George vault over a waiting list
of 500 other eligible candidates with an entry score of 25%
(the lowest acceptable rating and with 95% being the acceptable
rating for a future officer)? This answer may never be known.
What we can know with certainty is that George signed up for
six years of service, then decided that his priorities were
greater than those of his country, left the jurisdiction of
his Texas Air National Guard and moved to Alabama to work
on a failed political campaign.
His application to the Texas Air National Guard has been
released showing that he had been arrested and had numerous
traffic accidents and violations. The rules, at that time,
required a waiver for such violations, yet there are no notations
for any waivers for his cases.
We know that George Walker Bush did not appear for any guard
activities for a lengthy period during 1972 and 1973. We know
that he was suspended from flying on August 1, 1972 for failing
to appear for an annual medical evaluation. Mr. Bush's aide,
Dan Bartlett stated that the reason for not appearing for
his medical evaluation in 1972 was that "There was no
reason to take a flight exam when he wasn't flying and wasn't
going to fly." George Bush decided that he was not going
to fly even though we, the taxpayers, spent over $1 million
for his training. A condition for his admittance to the Texas
Air National Guard required a lifetime commitment to fly.
I am unaware of any case where a National Guard member has
had the privilege of choice regarding their service duties.
How would our National Guard function if the commanding officers
were not in charge? But in this case George W. Bush was allowed
to "fulfill" his duties as he saw fit, even choosing
to end his commitment almost one year early so that he could
attend Harvard University in the fall of 1973.
We may never know if the life that George saved was his
own, but we can know that the treatment he received was different.
We have had several representatives that did serve in Vietnam
in our Senate and Congress. One that I feel the need to mention
at this time is Max Cleland. Former Senator Cleland has been
on the receiving end of some very negative Republican campaign
ads. Last year he was viciously smeared by his Republican
opponent for being "weak on security." Television
ads were run comparing Max Cleland with Osama bin Laden. These
ads were run while he was presenting to Congress S.B. 929.
This Vietnam veteran authored S.B. 929 (The Max Cleland Over
the Road Bus Security and Safety Act of 2003), which passed
with unanimous consent. These duplicitous ads, discrediting
and dishonoring his sacrifices and endeavors, were successful
in unseating one of America's heroes. In Vietnam, he lost
his right arm and both legs when a grenade exploded.
Currently, in our highest office, there sits a man that
has blasphemed our country by his words and deeds. He has
obfuscated and hidden the facts from view for far too long.
He has led our country into two wars that have produced nothing
but more chaos and death for far too many innocent lives.
His party has been allowed the moral high ground in ways that
should never have been imagined. Our country has been hijacked
by radicals and warmongering zealots.
Today, unlike 1968, there are more than 174,000 National
Guard members deployed across the globe on active duty assignments.
The questions of honor and duty for these young men and women
are quite different than those questions of honor and duty
for George Walker Bush. If any of them fail to appear for
duty and training, the consequences are grave and the personal
humiliation is even greater.
It is up to the citizens of this country to become informed
in ways that they have not been in the past years. Our government,
led by George W. Bush, runs amok with its deadly and wasteful
ways. Our Congress is prepared to once again raise the National
Debt ceiling an additional $1 trillion. During the past two
years, that debt has grown beyond $7 trillion. An additional
trillion will allow it to increase above $8 trillion.
Now is the time for all good citizens to come to the aid
of our country. Sound the alarm. The dangers that we face
through these continued actions, that are passing as governing,
will change our nation irrevocably and forever. There is not
a moment to waste.
If your congressional representatives are not heeding your
words and continue to allow this administration to lead us
into debt and destruction, we must speak loudly and with one
voice in November.