George W. Bush: The American Presidents Series: The 43rd President, 2001-2009
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The controversial president whose time in office was defined by the September 11 attacks and the war on terror
George W. Bush stirred powerful feelings on both sides of the aisle. Republicans viewed him as a resolute leader who guided America through the September 11 attacks and retaliated in Afghanistan and Iraq, while Democrats saw him as an overmatched president who led America into two inconclusive wars that sapped the nation's resources and diminished its stature. When Bush left office amid a growing financial crisis, both parties were eager to move on.
In this assessment of the nation's forty-third president, James Mann sheds light on why George W. Bush made the decisions that shaped his presidency, what went wrong, and how the internal debates and fissures within his administration played out in such a charged atmosphere. He shows how and why Bush became such a polarizing figure in both domestic and foreign affairs, and he examines the origins and enduring impact of Bush's most consequential actions-including Iraq, the tax cuts, and the war on terror. In this way, Mann points the way to a more complete understanding of George W. Bush and his times.
on September 12, the French newspaper Le Monde had declared on its front page: “We Are All Americans.” Bush, however, kept the Europeans at arm’s length. He and other administration officials were reluctant to coordinate America’s response to September 11 too closely with other countries. Military leaders recalled how time-consuming and cumbersome it had been to reach decisions within NATO for military actions in Bosnia and Kosovo in the 1990s. Moreover, America had now been hit on its own soil.
Julian E. Zelizer on Jimmy Carter The author and publisher have provided this e-book to you for your personal use only. You may not make this e-book publicly available in any way. Copyright infringement is against the law. If you believe the copy of this e-book you are reading infringes on the author’s copyright, please notify the publisher at: us.macmillanusa.com/piracy. To Nate, Ben, and Ryan Contents The American Presidents Series Title Page Copyright Notice Dedication Editor’s Note
prevent it. Having experienced that day, they had become convinced that previous rules and long-standing doctrines no longer applied. Cheney dismissed Scowcroft’s Wall Street Journal article as reflecting a “pre-9/11 mindset.” Bush fully agreed. “Before 9/11, Saddam was a problem America might have been able to manage,” he later wrote. “Through the lens of the post-9/11 world, my view changed.… The lesson of 9/11 was that if we waited for a danger to fully materialize, we would have waited too
cocky, mischievous, fun-loving, garrulous, and hotheaded—a curious blend of charm and cynicism. He admired his father but was disdainful of the established, East Coast–oriented world from which his father arose. In 1959, as George H. W. Bush’s oil ventures began to shift from inland Texas to offshore drilling, the family moved to Houston. George W. attended a local private school, Kinkaid, for two years and was then sent off to the Northeast to get a traditional Bush family education. His
a few months it seemed as though Mubarak was open to some limited political liberalization. These hopes were soon dashed. In parliamentary elections later that year, there were accusations that Egyptian security forces had sent out thugs to intimidate voters, and in 2006 Mubarak announced that he would keep in place the decades-old “emergency law” limiting free speech and assembly. Years later, Rice admitted to wondering whether her speech had “promised more rapid change than anyone could