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Old December 4th 03, 02:27 PM
Harry Krause
 
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Default The Turkey's Turkey

The Bird Was Perfect But Not For Dinner
In Iraq Picture, Bush Is Holding the Centerpiece

By Mike Allen
Washington Post Staff Writer
Thursday, December 4, 2003; Page A33

President Bush's Baghdad turkey was for looking, not for eating.


In the most widely published image from his Thanksgiving day trip to
Baghdad, the beaming president is wearing an Army workout jacket and
surrounded by soldiers as he cradles a huge platter laden with a
golden-brown turkey.

The bird is so perfect it looks as if it came from a food magazine, with
bunches of grapes and other trimmings completing a Norman Rockwell image
that evokes bounty and security in one of the most dangerous parts of
the world.

But as a small sign of the many ways the White House maximized the
impact of the 21/2-hour stop at the Baghdad airport, administration
officials said yesterday that Bush picked up a decoration, not a serving
plate.

Officials said they did not know the turkey would be there or that Bush
would pick it up. A contractor had roasted and primped the turkey to
adorn the buffet line, while the 600 soldiers were served from
cafeteria-style steam trays, the officials said. They said the bird was
not placed there in anticipation of Bush's stealthy visit, and military
sources said a trophy turkey is a standard feature of holiday chow lines.

The scene, which lasted just a few seconds, was not visible to a
reporter who was there but was recorded by a pool photographer and
described by officials yesterday in response to questions raised in
Washington.

Bush's standing rose in a poll conducted immediately after the trip.
Administration officials said the presidential stop provided a morale
boost that troops in Iraq are still talking about, and helped reassure
Iraqis about U.S. intentions.

Nevertheless, the foray has opened new credibility questions for a White
House that has dealt with issues as small as who placed the "Mission
Accomplished" banner aboard the aircraft carrier Bush used to proclaim
the end of major combat operations in Iraq, and as major as assertions
about Saddam Hussein's arsenal of unconventional weapons and his ability
to threaten the United States.

The White House has updated its account of an airborne conversation in
which a British Airways pilot wondered into his radio if he had just
seen Air Force One and was told that it was a Gulfstream 5, a much
smaller plane. White House officials first said that the British Airways
pilot had talked with the Air Force One pilot. Bush aides now say the
conversation occurred between the British Airways pilot and an air
traffic control worker.

"I don't think everybody was clear on exactly how that conversation
happened," White House press secretary Scott McClellan said.

British Airways said it has been unable to confirm the new version.
"We've looked into it," a spokeswoman said from London. "It didn't happen."

White House officials do not deny that they craft elaborate events to
showcase Bush, but they maintain that these events are designed to
accurately dramatize his policies and to convey qualities about him that
are real.

"This was effective, because it captured something about the president
that people know is true, that he really cares about the soldiers and
gets emotional when he sees them," Mary Matalin, a former administration
official, said about the trip to Baghdad. "You have to figure out how to
capture the Bush we know, even if it doesn't come through in a speech
situation or a press conference. He regularly rejects anything that is
not him."

The Democratic presidential candidates tipped their hats to the White
House stage managers by refusing to criticize the trip, which dominated
weekend newscasts.

Aides to the Democrats said they concluded that the less said about the
trip, the better. In the view of these aides, the trip produced
reassuring images of a situation that has badly deteriorated, and
Democrats just wanted the moment to pass so they could go back to
criticizing Bush's postwar policy.

A poll conducted four days after Thanksgiving by the National Annenberg
Election Survey put Bush's job approval rating at 61 percent, up from 56
percent during the four days before the holiday. His job disapproval
rating dropped from 41 percent to 36 percent. His personal popularity
increased from 65 percent to 72 percent. The polls of 789 people before
Thanksgiving and 847 people after Thanksgiving each had a margin of
error of plus or minus 3 percentage points.

The trip was pulled off in total secrecy -- only a few Bush aides and
reporters knew about it in advance, and they were allowed to discuss it
only on secure phone lines. Reporters covering the Thanksgiving program
in Baghdad were not allowed to report the event until after Air Force
One had left.

Some of the reporters left behind at Crawford Middle School, where they
work when Bush is staying at his Texas ranch, felt they had been
deceived by White House accounts of what Bush would be doing on
Thanksgiving.

Correspondent Mark Knoller said Sunday on "CBS Evening News" that the
misleading information and deception were understandable, but that he
had been "filing radio reports that amounted to fiction."

"Even as President Bush was addressing U.S. personnel in Baghdad, I was
on the air saying he was at his ranch making holiday phone calls to
American troops overseas," Knoller said. "I got that information from a
White House official that very morning."
--
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Old December 4th 03, 03:14 PM
Wayne.B
 
Posts: n/a
Default The Turkey's Turkey

With some small mention of a gravy boat, this might have been an on
topic post.

I'm not GWB's biggest fan by any means but if the trip improved the
morale of the troops, AND upstaged Hillary the carpet bagger, then it
was all worth while.

================================================== =


On Thu, 04 Dec 2003 08:27:31 -0500, Harry Krause
wrote:

The Bird Was Perfect But Not For Dinner
In Iraq Picture, Bush Is Holding the Centerpiece

By Mike Allen
Washington Post Staff Writer
Thursday, December 4, 2003; Page A33

President Bush's Baghdad turkey was for looking, not for eating.


In the most widely published image from his Thanksgiving day trip to
Baghdad, the beaming president is wearing an Army workout jacket and
surrounded by soldiers as he cradles a huge platter laden with a
golden-brown turkey.

The bird is so perfect it looks as if it came from a food magazine, with
bunches of grapes and other trimmings completing a Norman Rockwell image
that evokes bounty and security in one of the most dangerous parts of
the world.

But as a small sign of the many ways the White House maximized the
impact of the 21/2-hour stop at the Baghdad airport, administration
officials said yesterday that Bush picked up a decoration, not a serving
plate.

Officials said they did not know the turkey would be there or that Bush
would pick it up. A contractor had roasted and primped the turkey to
adorn the buffet line, while the 600 soldiers were served from
cafeteria-style steam trays, the officials said. They said the bird was
not placed there in anticipation of Bush's stealthy visit, and military
sources said a trophy turkey is a standard feature of holiday chow lines.

The scene, which lasted just a few seconds, was not visible to a
reporter who was there but was recorded by a pool photographer and
described by officials yesterday in response to questions raised in
Washington.

Bush's standing rose in a poll conducted immediately after the trip.
Administration officials said the presidential stop provided a morale
boost that troops in Iraq are still talking about, and helped reassure
Iraqis about U.S. intentions.

Nevertheless, the foray has opened new credibility questions for a White
House that has dealt with issues as small as who placed the "Mission
Accomplished" banner aboard the aircraft carrier Bush used to proclaim
the end of major combat operations in Iraq, and as major as assertions
about Saddam Hussein's arsenal of unconventional weapons and his ability
to threaten the United States.

The White House has updated its account of an airborne conversation in
which a British Airways pilot wondered into his radio if he had just
seen Air Force One and was told that it was a Gulfstream 5, a much
smaller plane. White House officials first said that the British Airways
pilot had talked with the Air Force One pilot. Bush aides now say the
conversation occurred between the British Airways pilot and an air
traffic control worker.

"I don't think everybody was clear on exactly how that conversation
happened," White House press secretary Scott McClellan said.

British Airways said it has been unable to confirm the new version.
"We've looked into it," a spokeswoman said from London. "It didn't happen."

White House officials do not deny that they craft elaborate events to
showcase Bush, but they maintain that these events are designed to
accurately dramatize his policies and to convey qualities about him that
are real.

"This was effective, because it captured something about the president
that people know is true, that he really cares about the soldiers and
gets emotional when he sees them," Mary Matalin, a former administration
official, said about the trip to Baghdad. "You have to figure out how to
capture the Bush we know, even if it doesn't come through in a speech
situation or a press conference. He regularly rejects anything that is
not him."

The Democratic presidential candidates tipped their hats to the White
House stage managers by refusing to criticize the trip, which dominated
weekend newscasts.

Aides to the Democrats said they concluded that the less said about the
trip, the better. In the view of these aides, the trip produced
reassuring images of a situation that has badly deteriorated, and
Democrats just wanted the moment to pass so they could go back to
criticizing Bush's postwar policy.

A poll conducted four days after Thanksgiving by the National Annenberg
Election Survey put Bush's job approval rating at 61 percent, up from 56
percent during the four days before the holiday. His job disapproval
rating dropped from 41 percent to 36 percent. His personal popularity
increased from 65 percent to 72 percent. The polls of 789 people before
Thanksgiving and 847 people after Thanksgiving each had a margin of
error of plus or minus 3 percentage points.

The trip was pulled off in total secrecy -- only a few Bush aides and
reporters knew about it in advance, and they were allowed to discuss it
only on secure phone lines. Reporters covering the Thanksgiving program
in Baghdad were not allowed to report the event until after Air Force
One had left.

Some of the reporters left behind at Crawford Middle School, where they
work when Bush is staying at his Texas ranch, felt they had been
deceived by White House accounts of what Bush would be doing on
Thanksgiving.

Correspondent Mark Knoller said Sunday on "CBS Evening News" that the
misleading information and deception were understandable, but that he
had been "filing radio reports that amounted to fiction."

"Even as President Bush was addressing U.S. personnel in Baghdad, I was
on the air saying he was at his ranch making holiday phone calls to
American troops overseas," Knoller said. "I got that information from a
White House official that very morning."


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Old December 4th 03, 06:03 PM
RGrew176
 
Posts: n/a
Default The Turkey's Turkey

I really don't know what all the hoopla is about President Bush's trip to Iraq
to visit the troops. Sure it was political, everything a politician does is
political. Presidents have been visiting the troops at least since Lincoln.

To all those whiners about all the secrecy do you think that FDR's overseas
trips to visit the troops and attend confrences with our other allies during
WWII were not done in secrecy. There is nothing new here.

Time to move on.

133 days to go..


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