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December 07, 2004

President Bush at Camp Pendleton

The President is speaking at Camp Pendleton to the Marines, using the Pearl Harbor anniversary as an opportunity to talk about the war.

The speech has a great rhythm. He started out talking about the Marines' history, citing Chesty Puller and the battle out of Cho Sen in Korea. Perhaps significantly, in that battle, one Marine division took out 7 Chinese division. "I know what you were."

He then talks about the victories, progress, and future in Iraq. There's not a lot new here, but he lays out the case nicely. "I know what you are."

And then, a long extended discussion of the casualties, those not killed, but injured. Not merely numbers, but real empathy for those who've sacrificed limbs, eyes, fingers, and just plain recovery time for their country.

He makes a point of talking about private initiatives to help wounded soldiers in their post-war lives. And then, in case you doubted we were in the Internet era, repeated twice, www.americasupportsyou.mil, as a nationwide clearinghouse on those national and local efforts. He finished the appeal to the American public by looking, as Kerry would say, right into the camera: "Stand up for the men and women who stand up for America."

It's a good speech, and after the unbridled enthusiasm of the campaign trail, it's good to get back to some sense of normalcy. While the guys behind him are standing and taking digital photos, not sitting like my friend Jason, and nobody yells out in the middle of the speech. Perhaps because of the serious nature of the speech and the men, then enthusiasm is real, but muted. But the Army and Navy cadets have nothing on these guys for their mutual love for the President.

Posted by joshuasharf at December 7, 2004 11:15 AM | TrackBack

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