It was five years ago today...
May 1 marks the fifth anniversary of President George W. Bush's "Mission Accomplished" speech aboard the deck of the USS Abraham Lincoln.
After being landed on the deck of the carrier in an S-3B Viking 30 miles off the coast San Diego (Ari Fleischer said the president "could have helicoptered," but "he wanted to see a landing the way aviators see a landing"), Mr. Bush appeared in a flight suit to the cheers of the ship's personnel and the glare of television lights.
Later, he stood at a podium against a backdrop of an enormous banner reading "Mission Accomplished."
To the assembled audience and the world, Mr. Bush said, "Admiral Kelly, Captain Card, officers and sailors of the USS Abraham Lincoln, my fellow Americans: Major combat operations in Iraq have ended. In the Battle of Iraq, the United States and our allies have prevailed. And now our coalition is engaged in securing and reconstructing that country.
"In this battle, we have fought for the cause of liberty, and for the peace of the world. Our nation and our coalition are proud of this accomplishment - yet it is you, the members of the United States military, who achieved it. Your courage - your willingness to face danger for your country and for each other - made this day possible. Because of you, our nation is more secure. Because of you, the tyrant has fallen, and Iraq is free.
"Tonight, I have a special word for Secretary Rumsfeld, for General Franks, and for all the men and women who wear the uniform of the United States: America is grateful for a job well done.
Hubris, folly, and plain old idiocy. Incompetence and fecklessness, mendacity and hypocrisy. Those are the words we'll remember him by. Wanna bet these photos don't make the final cut for the Bush Presidential library?
UPDATE I - Blue Girl - 11:15 a.m.
The Hill website reported yesterday evening that a group of pissed off veterans - or as we refer to them, our base - is unfurling a 50' replica of the banner at the White House today.
Will the video make the evening news? Prolly not...