Bill Murchison

"History will record a great American president who finally upheld what America stands for: liberty for all ... "

Gracious sakes, who would write in that vein to The New York Times? Some doddering Republican precinct chairman in Petal, Miss.?

The Dick Cheney family's assistant chauffeur? Not -- surely not -- an Arab? But, yes, Sami Assadi, a self-identified member of the Arab diaspora, felt led to express his delight at the president's leadership, given "what is evolving in front of our eyes." He wanted likewise to register his weariness at being "patronized by Western leaders who have supported brutal regimes in the Middle East that keep the Arabs down ... "

Those would be leaders of a different stripe than the U.S. president who initiated, and is methodically pressing, the campaign for Iraq's liberation.

Sami Assadi has paid his own tribute. It is time many more of us chimed in. Hooray for George W. Bush, a president who did what he had to do and did it right!

The armed forces did the fighting. The Pentagon laid the plans. Counselors of all sorts put in all sorts of oars. Nonetheless, the thing could not have worked absent the steadiness and resolve of the commander in chief himself -- this so-called Yale frat boy, hungering, supposedly, to be as big a man as Daddy. If Yale frat boys, collectively, perform with the signal decisiveness of Brother George, the U.S. government should scoop them up the instant they graduate.

As war leader, George W. Bush has performed -- is performing -- magnificently. It puts one in mind of many things, such as the capacity of the chronically underestimated to run like thoroughbreds when the starting gun goes off.

Another thing that comes to mind are the large consequences that sometimes flow from minuscule events -- like the election count in certain Florida precincts. The Duke of Wellington called Waterloo "the nearest-run thing you ever saw in your lives." That was before the 2000 presidential election, which was nearer. The "we wuz robbed" syndrome persists in certain political circles to this day, so narrow was the count, so rancorous were the feelings the count produced.

Now if people want to go around with stuck-out lower lips on account of Florida, that's their American right, God bless 'em. But sights should be raised higher. Suppose the near-run thing that was Florida had gone the other way, and Al Gore had become president. If it had, I wouldn't be giving short odds on the prospect of blessings descending upon the American president from the likes of Sami Assadi and the joyous multitudes in Iraq.

Bill Murchison

Bill Murchison is the former senior columns writer for The Dallas Morning News and author of There's More to Life Than Politics.
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