The father of former president George Bush, former President George H.W. Bush, lived to the ripe old age of ninety-four, and is eulogized as an (untypical) gentleman, a beloved father and grandfather and a sterling patriot, who was a pilot in World War II and headed the CIA before becoming president. Americans were treated to three days of coverage: his lying in state in Washington, his funeral service in Texas and finally, the journey by train to the small town where his presidential library is located where the entire impeccably choreographed two hour funeral, complete with air force flyover took place. Confronted with all this pomp, a few members of the extended Bush family were caught on camera still holding their right hand over their heart when the Star Spangled Banner was succeeded by a hymn.
The younger Bush’s visible grief added to the pathos. However, the media managed to find an upbeat ‘human interest’ story in the alignment of past presidents and their wives, obligatory attendees at the ceremony in the National Cathedral. Former President Bill Clinton leaned toward his neighbors with a smile, while Hillary stared straight ahead, determined to avoid any suggestion of amity toward her former rival, Donald Trump, from whom she was separated by President Carter and the Obamas, both of whom shook hands with Trump and First Lady Melania.
On this day, the Saudi war against Yemen continued unabated, although the port of Hodeida was able to receive food. However, the day also had its dose of scandal: the Washington Post revealed the real reason for Donald Trump’s failure to condemn the killing of a Saudi journalist and US resident in a Saudi consulate in Turkey: the Saudi government recently spent around $300,000 housing American soldiers at Donald Trump’s Washington hotel so they could lobby the US Congress on its behalf. Russiagate looks tame compared to this screeching infringement of the ‘emoluments clause’ of the US constitution: No government member may receive money from a foreign entity.
However, it was Bush forty-one who initiated American hostilities in the Middle East by evicting Saddam Hussein’s Iraq from Kuwait in the first Gulf War in 1990.
Deena Stryker is an international expert, author and journalist that has been at the forefront of international politics for over thirty years, exlusively for the online journal “New Eastern Outlook”.