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Wednesday, March 22, 2006

Spinning Unpopular Wars

This is a news conference president Johnson held in November of 1967. As noted here, this was at a time when "the percentage of Americans who thought Vietnam was a mistake was closing in on 50 percent in the Gallup poll," and four months before Johnson announced he would not seek reelection:

In the midst of all the horrors of war, in guerrilla fighting in South Vietnam, we have had five elections in a period of a little over 14 months," Johnson said. ''. . . To think that here in the midst of war when the grenades are popping like firecrackers all around you, that two-thirds or three-fourths of the people would register and vote and have five elections in 13 months -- and through the democratic process select people at the local level, a constituent assembly, a house of representatives, a senate, a president, and a vice president -- that is encouraging. The fact that the population under free control has constantly risen, and that under Communist control has constantly gone down, is a very encouraging sign.

Here's president Bush in a weekly radio address from January, 2005, a time when support for Bush's handling of the war had fallen below 50%:

In the face of assassination, brutal violence and calculated intimidation, Iraqis continue to prepare for the elections and to campaign for their candidates. They know what democracy will mean for their country: a future of peace, stability, prosperity and justice for themselves and for their children. ... Tomorrow's vote will be the latest step in Iraq's journey to permanent democracy and freedom. Those elected to the transitional National Assembly will help appoint a new government that will fully and fairly represent the diversity of the Iraqi people. ... Tomorrow's election will add to the momentum of democracy. ... as they move further into the light of liberty.

    Posted by on Wednesday, March 22, 2006 at 12:33 AM in Iraq and Afghanistan, Politics | Permalink  TrackBack (0)  Comments (12)

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