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blueButGlad Donating Member (38 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-29-06 02:27 PM
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on this date in bush history: bush doing good!
With the approach of a new year, take some time to look back. Today's 'On this date in Bush history...'

"Tart Words make no Friends: a spoonful of honey will catch more flies than Gallon of Vinegar" Benjamin Franklin, Poor Richards Almanac, 1744

2004: The President discusses US support for the hundreds of thousands of victims of the Asian tsunami on this date in 2004. "This morning, I spoke with the leaders of India, Sri Lanka, Thailand and Indonesia, and expressed my condolences and our countrys condolences. I told them of our support" President Bush said.

Mr. Bush would eventually request almost $1 billion in US aid for victims of the Indian Ocean tsunami. Additionally, 16,000 US military personnel assisted in the region. At its peak, there were 26 US ships, 58 helicopters, and 43 aircraft participating in US tsunami aid efforts. The Defense Dept. delivered over ten million pounds of food and supplies and over 400,000 gallons of fresh water.

The effort paid a surprising dividend. In a world that has recently come to hold a low opinion of America (flip to June 23rd 2005) a global opinion survey released in 2005 would find that in one Muslim country the opinion of America had actually improved. That country was Indonesia, 88% Muslim, and a recipient of much of the US tsunami aid.

The survey reveals the dividends that can come to the United States when money is spent on things like food and water donations instead of dropping bombs. While the hundreds of billions spent on military operations in Iraq served, by almost all accounts, to increase dislike of America in the Arab world and add to the numbers of anti-America terrorists, the spending of less than $1 billion in Indonesia made us friends instead of enemies. If Iraq and 9/11 have taught us one thing, it is that, for all of our military might, it can be very difficult to detect and stop suicide bombers, determined airplane hijackers, and those hiding bombs in roads. Every individual that is turned against America is a potential terrorist than can sneak through our defenses. Every individual who comes to see us as a caring and good people is one less person susceptible to being recruited by the enemy.

Consider the dividends if a portion of those hundreds of billions spent fighting Saddam were instead spent showing the world that we are not, in our hearts, a country that desires to create the misery and destruction that now exists in Iraq. Guns and bombs might seem the obvious tools to use in a fight, but they are not always the best way to defeat an enemy, or gain friends, in the age of terrorism.

Excerpt from the Dec 29th entry of the 2007 calendar
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