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Salon: New Bush records, same old questions

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kskiska Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Feb-17-04 05:17 PM
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Salon: New Bush records, same old questions
Why did the "outstanding young pilot" stop flying? Why dont the records document his time in Alabama? And what about the missing physical? The 400-page document dump has no answers.

By Eric Boehlert

If the Texas National Guard had ever asked George W. Bush to prove he'd fulfilled his duty and he had to depend on the papers in his own military file to make the case, he would have been unsuccessful. That's the only conclusion that can be drawn from the White House's recent document dump, in which aides insisted they released "absolutely everything" in the president's file in order to remove any lingering doubts about Bush's Guard service between 1972 and 1973 when Bush moved to Alabama to work on a Senate campaign for the friend of his father.

Instead of answering the questions, the documents, most of which were simply duplicates of already released public records, confirmed what skeptics have been saying for some time: There's simply no data available to knock down the assertion that for months at a time Bush failed to show up for required Guard duty. Instead, a picture continues to emerge of a trained Guard pilot who in 1972, two years before his six-year commitment was up, decided to not only walk away from his flying duties completely, but to serve as little as possible in the Guard, before getting permission to leave in order to enroll in Harvard Business School.

The surprising absence of relevant documents over the weekend may add credence to the accusation raised six years ago by a retired Texas Air National Guard officer who claims aides to Bush went through his military file in 1997 and removed anything that would have been embarrassing for Bush as he prepared to run for reelection as governor of Texas, and planned a 2000 presidential run. Among the documents Ret. Lt. Col. Bill Burkett claims to have seen tossed in the trash can in 1997 were Bush's personnel review and pay records, the type of documents that are missing today.

The most glaring omission from the stash released by the White House is Bush's 1973-'74 Officer Effectiveness Report. Commanders are required to fill one out for every officer who serves. The last OER on record for Bush was completed on May 2, 1973, and covered the period from May 1, 1972, to April 30, 1973. But according to Bush's payroll and retirement records, he was credited for serving 38 days after May 2, 1973, which means he should have been evaluated. Yet his officer rating seems to have simply disappeared.

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das Donating Member (4 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Feb-17-04 05:32 PM
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1. Why is the media not reporting this?
George Bush himself left no doubt why he joined the National Guard: to get out of Vietnam. In May 1984, he told the Houston Chronicle: "I was not prepared to shoot my eardrum out with a shotgun in order to get a deferment. Nor was I willing to go to Canada. So I chose to better myself by learning how to fly airplanes."

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newyawker99 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Feb-19-04 06:48 PM
Response to Reply #1
2. Hi das!!
Welcome to DU!! :toast:
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