Bush, the press and Osama bin Laden

Blog ››› ››› ERIC BOEHLERT

A final thought on Bush's "wistful and introspective" (LA Times) press conference.

The day-after headlines certainly focused on the laundry list of mistakes Bush admitted to making during his eight years in office. The AP summed up the greatest misses Bush mentioned this way:

_Putting a "Mission Accomplished" banner on an aircraft carrier shortly after Saddam Hussein was toppled from power.

_"Obviously, some of my rhetoric has been a mistake."

_Going immediately for an overhaul of the Social Security program, rather than seeking immigration reform, in the wake of his re-election to a second term in 2004.

_The revelations of abuses at the Abu Ghraib detention camp in Iraq, which he described as a "huge disappointment."

_Never turning up weapons of mass destruction in Iraq, which he called a "significant disappointment."

_Not getting congressional approval for three, bilateral free trade agreements with Colombia, Panama and South Korea.

Noticing anything missing from that list? Like the capture or killing of Osama bin Laden, which for years, we were told, was the administration's top priority since bin Laden was behind the terrorist attack that killed more than 3,000 Americans.

Since the press conference though, I haven't seen or heard any press reports mention that glaringly obvious gap in Bush's list. Instead, reading off the White House play sheet, the press no longer thinks bin Laden matters.

Lapdogs to the end.

UPDATE: A check of the transcript shows that Osama bin Laden, the man who defined Bush's presidency, was never mentioned by either Bush or anyone in the press corps during the president's expansive, 45-minute farewell press conference.

Posted In
National Security & Foreign Policy, Terrorism
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