Speaking at the United States Air Force Academy graduation ceremony in Colorado Springs on Wednesday, President Bush readied the Class of 2008 for their future in the military by making repeated references to “the Greatest Generation” and World War II—oh, and also by body-slamming graduates.
Rocky Mountain News:
“In the 20th century, air power helped make possible freedom’s victory in great ideological struggles with fascism and communism,” Bush said. “In those struggles, our nation faced evil men with territorial ambitions and totalitarian aims, who murdered the innocent to achieve their political objectives.
“Through a combination of military strength and national resolve, and faith in the power of freedom, we defeated these adversaries—and secured the peace for millions across the world.”
Bush said that in World War II, like today, defeating “hateful ideologies” required national power—including military might. Today, however, fighting men and women have at their disposal technology that makes it possible to wage war “with greater precision and greater humanity.”
“Our new enemies know they can’t defeat us militarily. So their strategy is to cause us to lose our nerve and retreat before the job is done,” Bush said. “They take advantage of the information age and the 24-hour news cycles, creating images of chaos and suffering for the cameras, in the hope that these images will horrify the American people and undermine resolve and morale here at home.
AP photo / Charles Dharapak
Body-Slammer in Chief: President Bush and graduate Theodore Shiveley from Plano, Texas, bump chests at the Air Force Academy graduation ceremony in Colorado Springs, Colo., on Wednesday.