Monday, January 14, 2008

President Bush Visits Troops in Kuwait

President George W. Bush shakes hands with a Soldier after his speech at Camp Arifjan, Kuwait, Jan 12. Bush thanked the troops and their families for their hard work and sacrifice. (Photo by Spc. Giancarlo Casem)


President George W. Bush waves at troops as he walks to the stage to speak to Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen and Marines during his visit to Camp Arifjan, Kuwait, Jan. 12.
(Photo/U.S. Marine Corps Sgt. Sara A. Carter)

U.S. President George Bush greets thousands of Soldiers, Sailors, Marines, Airmen and Coastguardsmen at Camp Arifjan, Kuwait
(Photo/U. S. Marine Corps Sgt. Sara A. Carter)


U.S. President George Bush greets thousands of Soldiers, Sailors, Marines, Airmen and Coastguardsmen at Camp Arifjan, Kuwait
Photo by Sgt 1st Class Paul Tuttle





(click to enlarge)


U.S. President George Bush addresses thousands of Soldiers, Sailors, Marines, Airmen and Coastguardsmen at Camp Arifjan, Kuwait
Photo by Sgt 1st Class Paul Tuttle

Gen. David Petraeus, left, commander of Multi-National Forces – Iraq, and Lt. Gen. James J. Lovelace, commander of Third Army (Forward), watch as U.S. President George Bush addresses Soldiers, Sailors, Marines, Airmen and Coastguardsmen at Camp Arifjan, Kuwait, Jan. 12. Bush thanked Third Army for their work supporting Operation Iraqi Freedom after meeting with Petraeus and U.S. ambassador to Iraq, Ryan Crocker, earlier in the morning to receive an update of the war.
Photo by Sgt 1st Class Paul Tuttle

Gen. David Petraeus, left, commander of Multi-National Forces - Iraq, and Lt. Gen. James J. Lovelace, commander of Third Army (Forward), watch as U.S. President George Bush greets Soldiers, Sailors, Marines, Airmen and Coastguardsmen of Third Army at Camp Arifjan, Kuwait
Photo by Sgt 1st Class Paul Tuttle
U.S. President George Bush greets Maj. Gen. Dennis E. Hardy, deputy commander of Third Army (Forward), after addressing Soldiers, Sailors, Marines, Airmen and Coastguardsmen assigned to Third Army at Camp Arifjan, Kuwait, Jan. 12. Bush thanked the service members for their hard work supporting Operation Iraqi Freedom.
Photo by Sgt. 1st Class Paul Tuttle, 1st Sustainment Command (Theater) Public Affairs



Commander-in-Chief Offers Message of Hope
to Service Members in Kuwait
By Staff Sgt. Jacob A. McDonald
50th Public Affairs Detachment

CAMP ARIFJAN, Kuwait – President George W. Bush made a stop in Kuwait Saturday during his Middle East tour to meet with key U.S. leaders and speak to service members deployed to the Third Army/U.S. Army Central area of operations in support of Operations Iraqi Freedom and Enduring Freedom.

Bush met with the U.S. ambassador to Iraq Ryan Crocker, and Gen. David Petraeus, commander, Multi-National Forces Iraq, to discuss the situation in Iraq as well as the progress made and the challenges ahead.

“We discussed the fact that whatever happens in Iraq impacts everything else in the entire region,” Bush said. He then discussed the changes and improvements that came from the troop surge and the strategy change in Iraq over the last year. “Iraq is now a different place from one year ago,” Bush said. “Much hard work remains but levels of violence are significantly reduced. Hope is returning to Baghdad and hope is returning to towns and villages throughout the country.”

Bush also spoke about how the Iraqis are taking control of their own government and coming together despite religious differences to build a common future and diminish violence.

In his statement Bush spoke about U.S. forces returning home due to the changes in Iraq. He stated that any additional reduction will be based on Petraeus’ recommendations, based on the conditions on the ground in Iraq.

“I have believed all along that if people are given a chance to live in a free society they will do the hard work necessary to live in a free society,” he said.

He also spoke about the importance of the concerned citizen groups who are stepping up to help provide local security in addition to the Iraqi surge of 100,000 local police and Iraqi troops.

“We must do all we can to ensure 2008 brings even greater progress for Iraq’s young democracy. Long-term success in Iraq is vital to our friends here in the region and to America’s national security” Bush said. “In a place where Saddam Hussein once menaced the world, the new U.S., Iraqi relationship will strengthen a democracy that serves its people, fights terrorists and serves as a beacon of freedom for millions across the Middle East.”

Bush then moved on to speak with several thousand service members gathered at the Zone 6 stage on Camp Arifjan. He encouraged the service members to continue their work in supporting the mission. During his speech he thanked Lt. Gen. James J. Lovelace, commander, Third Army/ USARCENT, and the Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen, Marines and civilians serving for their hard work in completing the support and logistical mission in Kuwait.

“In the long term, the best way to defeat the ideology of hate is one with an ideology of hope and that is one with liberty at its fundamental core,” Bush said. The assembled troops responded with a loud, “hooah.”

“It’s hard work but it is necessary work,” he continued. “I thank you for what you are doing. There is no doubt in my mind that when the history is written, the final page will say, ‘Victory was achieved by the United States of America for the good of the world.’”

Following the speech to the troops Petraeus and Crocker spoke to media about the meeting they had with the President. They highlighted the importance of political reconciliation in Iraq.

“Reconciliation is more than national legislation,” Crocker said. “It’s also what we are seeing in provinces around the country. There is more cross-sectarian political activity. As security improves and some of the tensions reduce we are seeing more political activity and more steps toward reconciliation. There is still a long way to go. We are seeing some encouraging steps now at both the national and local levels.”

Petraeus said troop withdrawals would depend on whether things get better, stay the same or decline as U.S. troops pull out and Iraqi Security Forces take over. He stated that Iraqi citizens and security forces are preparing to take on the security of their own country. He said recommendations for continued withdrawal will be based on the situation in the country.

8 comments:

Sarge Charlie said...

What a wonderful man we have for president, I love George W. Bush.

Donald Douglas said...

Great post, Flag Gazer!

Kimberly said...

Flag Gazer!Thanks for your supportfor my husband and all his brothers and sisters in arms. Additionally, thanks for your support of the families that wait at home. It makes me feel better knowing there are poeple out there that truly understand what the definition of support means.
Kimberly
"Mrs.FlyingDevilDawg"

Flag Gazer said...

Kimberly-
You are most welcome - it is a joy for us to be supportive of the finest amongst us - and that includes the families! Thank you for all you do - you are all special.

Buck said...

Wow. GREAT pics. And you can bet nearly none of them will make the news (repeatedly)...they don't make Dubya look near stupid enough.

Thanks, Cynthia!

Flag Gazer said...

So true, Buck! - lol

Amy Proctor said...

Pres. Bush gave a wonderful speech and the troops reactions show how much they respect him. Those there *get it* and understand the objective.

My husband is active duty Army, an OIF vet, and we served as a military family for 8 years under Clinton. The troops did NOT respect him as commander in chief and crowd reaction from the troops was very different for Cliton than Bush.

On a side note, am I the only one who thinks GEN Petraeus is hot when he smiles? He may not have won Time's Person of the Year award but he should have won People's Sexiest Man Alive award.

;)

Flag Gazer said...

Amy -
I'm with you!!!
I don't find the girlie-men of the entertainment world at all sezy!! Give me a REAL man!