June 13, 2006


President Bush arrives in Iraq: state TV (Reuters, 6/13/06)

President Bush has arrived in Iraq, state television said on Tuesday.

It gave no more details.

Bush Makes Surprise Visit to Iraq (Michael Abramowitz, June 13, 2006, Washington Post )

President Bush arrived in Baghdad today for a face-to-face meeting with new Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki -- an effort, the White House said, to get a clear sense of the premier's priorities and how the U.S. government could help his government succeed.

The White House originally had said Bush was scheduled to be at Camp David and to hold a video-conference with Maliki this morning. Instead, without telling the Iraqi government or all but his closest advisers, the president slipped out of Washington last night and made the 11-hour trip to Baghdad International Airport, landing at 4:08 p.m. Baghdad time (8:08 a.m. EDT). [...]

"Good to see you," Maliki said to the president, who was escorted by a retinue of aides, including U.S. Ambassador Zalmay Khalizad and the senior U.S. commander in Iraq, Gen. George W. Casey Jr.

Bush Makes Surprise Visit to Baghdad (Terence Hunt, AP, 6/13/06)
President Bush made a surprise visit to Iraq on Tuesday to meet newly named Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki and discuss the next steps in the troubled, three-year-old war.

It was a dramatic move by Bush, traveling to violence-rattled Baghdad less than a week after the death of terror chief Abu Musab al-Zarqawi in a bombing attack. The president was expected to be in Baghdad a little more than five hours....

Landing at Baghdad airport, Bush transferred to a helicopter for a six-minute ride into the heavily fortified Green Zone. White House officials said the helicopter ride posed the greatest risk for the president....

In Baghdad, Bush was to meet with al-Maliki and senior members of his Cabinet. White House officials said the president wanted to meet face- to-face with the prime minister to size him up and assure him of U.S. support.

He said the message that he wants to send to the Iraqi government is "we stand with you. What you're doing is important."...

Bush's aides had expected the president to be with them [at Camp David] on Tuesday for a video conference between Baghdad and Camp David of al-Maliki and his cabinet members and Bush and his team.

Instead, Bush was in Iraq for the video conference.

The guy does have a sense of humor.

MORE MORE: Bush Flies to Baghdad to Back Iraqi Leader (John F. Burns, Christine Hauser, NY Times, 6/13/06)

After a secretive overnight flight to Baghdad, President Bush held his first direct talks with Iraq's Prime Minister Nuri Kamal al-Maliki today, offering a dramatic show of support to the new government while driving home the message that the country's future is in Iraqi hands.
Have I crossed the wingnut threshold because I think that the use of "secretive" rather than "secret" is a lefty-bias jab at the President?

Posted by David Cohen at June 13, 2006 9:21 AM

I'll wait for a more reliable source.

Posted by: erp at June 13, 2006 9:29 AM

"The name is Bush . . . George Bush."

Posted by: Mike Morley at June 13, 2006 9:47 AM

How can you tell a plastic John Kerry from the real one?

Posted by: Rick T. at June 13, 2006 10:38 AM

Watch for this headline in tomorrow's European MSM:

"Bush attempts to upstage World Cup".

Posted by: Peter B at June 13, 2006 10:48 AM

The plastic one doesn't have its foot in its mouth.

Posted by: Jay at June 13, 2006 11:11 AM

The plastic one is anatomically correct.

Posted by: Bryan at June 13, 2006 11:13 AM

Sen. Heinz-Kerry is not plastic, He's 100% turkey.

Posted by: Raoul Ortega at June 13, 2006 11:30 AM

Yup, just like Bush----vacationing when he should be working. And this time, he had the gall to fly all the way to the Middle East for his vacation!

Posted by: fred at June 13, 2006 1:06 PM

Nice headline, David.

Posted by: joe shropshire at June 13, 2006 1:17 PM


Probably, but don't worry too much as you are cancelled out by a neurotic leftist somewhere who is sure Bush will be smuggling oil in his luggage on the flight home.

Posted by: Peter B at June 13, 2006 3:04 PM

Dvid, I think you're right. "Secret" would have been sufficient, but "secretive" plays into the lefty talking point about how strangely secretive the administration is supposed to be.

Posted by: PapayaSF at June 13, 2006 4:23 PM

To flesh out my thinking a little more, the flight was "secret"; that is, it wasn't known to anyone without the need to know.

In lefty fantasies, the administration is "secretive"; that is, predisposed to keep things secret from the public.

Posted by: David Cohen at June 13, 2006 4:41 PM

Bryan, do you mean the hole in his head is visible?

Posted by: erp at June 13, 2006 4:51 PM

Every word they write is a lefty-bias jab at the President, including "and" and "the."

Posted by: Bob Hawkins at June 13, 2006 5:32 PM

David: I prefer to think of it as WMD= Willful Media Deception. Good for way more chuckles than their self-fulfilling "secretive".

Posted by: John Resnick at June 13, 2006 6:24 PM

Secretive is a pejorative. It's only slighlty better than furtive.

Posted by: Pepys at June 13, 2006 7:21 PM

Better to be quietly 'secretive' than openly feckless.

John Murtha is probably hopping mad tonight - "that idiot goes there and makes Iraq legitimate".

Posted by: jim hamlen at June 13, 2006 10:04 PM