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Three years after The “Mission Accomplished” Speech
4/28/06 | Joe Stener

Posted on 04/28/2006 10:16:06 AM PDT by screw boll

March 19, 2003 was the start of the Iraq war. By May 1’st of the same year, President Bush flew to the USS Abraham Lincoln ship to welcome home its crew, which concluded a nine-month deployment.

The ship crew was overwhelmed with joy to return home after a long deployment that included the immense accomplishment of toppling Saddam. Similarly, the crew was ecstatic to applaud their Commander in Chief during a pre-arranged speech. To express their happiness, the crew flew a banner (on top of the ship’s tower) proclaiming “Mission Accomplished.” Since the banner appeared in Bush’s background during the speech, it gave the impression that Bush is asserting that the Iraq mission is fully accomplished.

Months after the speech, reports of Iraq in turmoil were endless. It was embarrassing for Bush to have the public see daily photos of bombs, death, and destruction side-by-side to the well-published photo of him standing in front of the “mission accomplished” banner. The May 1’st date also became a symbolic time to mock the President’s pre-mature victory “illusions.” The mockery of Bush increased when reports suggested that the White House assisted the ship crew in obtaining the banner; apparently, to increase the president’s popularity rating.

As is with most reporting surrounding the war, the ship incident and the new May 1’st holiday, is yet another part of the coverage that is based on misrepresentation of facts. One of the facts being, that Bush did not say, or personally proclaim, that the Iraq mission is accomplished. Instead, Bush warned of the hardships the U.S. will face in Iraq.

“We have difficult work to do in Iraq,” Bush said. After mentioning some details, he continued, “The transition from dictatorship to democracy will take time, but it is worth every effort.” Bush’s reference, although not stating, of an accomplished mission was to the ship crew that he welcomed home.

“Other nations in history have fought in foreign lands and remained to occupy and exploit. Americans, following battle, want nothing more than to return home. That is your direction tonight. After service in the Afghan and Iraqi theaters of war, after 100,000 miles on the longest carrier deployment in recent history, you are homeward bound,” Bush praised the never-ending applauding crew.

The content of speech also debunks the critics who claim that the administration frequently changes the reasons for the war. The critics suggest that Saddam’s possession of WMD was the sole reason for war and only after months of searching and not finding anything (another false perception!), the rationale suddenly changed to the spreading of democracy and freedom; know as Bush’s “noble cause.”

Unfortunately for the critics, Bush’s speech took place when the military’s WMD search for was merely underway; yet, the speech had endless references of freedom and democracy. “In the images of celebrating Iraqis, we have also seen the ageless appeal of human freedom,” Bush said. “The nation thanks all the members of our coalition who joined in a noble cause.” Other freedom-excerpts of the speech state: Men and women in every culture need liberty… Where freedom takes hold, hatred gives way to hope… We will leave behind a free Iraq… The latest confirms that Bush’s timetable for withdrawal was then, as is now, in accordance with the progress of democracy.

Another mockery of Bush’s judgment is his statement that, “Major combat operations in Iraq have ended.”

Considering that approximately 2,150 U.S. troops died since that date, Bush’s statement does appear to be extremely optimistic. However, the death to day’s ratio of the war’s first 30 days is the highest then most, if not all, 30-day periods of the war. This result suggests that the pre-speech days (42, to be exact), were, in fact, a major-combat period that ended shortly thereafter. In addition, at the time of the speech, the military had already reduced the use of heavy artillery such as B-52 bombers, huge fighter-jets squadrons, and cruise missiles; artillery that is operated solely in major combat operations. Furthermore, although the daily roadside bombs and small arms fire causes the death toll to rise, they are hardly a form of “major combat.”

The advantage the critic have via “mission accomplished” photos and counting the death toll “three years later,” does not undercut what one can conclude after the lengthy process of reviewing the speech. The conclusion being that although the mission to stabilize Iraq is yet to be fulfilled, the toppling of Saddam was indeed accomplished by May 1, 2003, thanks to the bravery and might of the U.S.-led coalition.

Related readings:

Bush’s speech-

Mockery of Bush/May 1’st holiday:

Death toll-

Interim report of WMD Search- (see the end of the first half).

Dulfer Report Findings:

Chemical Warfare-

Biological warfare-

TOPICS: Editorial; Foreign Affairs

1 posted on 04/28/2006 10:16:08 AM PDT by screw boll
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To: screw boll
is yet another part of the coverage that is based on misrepresentation of facts.

The "coverage" of the war is to entertain an easily bored audience in America in order to get ad revenue. It helps to keep that in mind.
2 posted on 04/28/2006 10:19:24 AM PDT by P-40 (
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To: P-40

I enjoy debating libs when the mission accomplished thing comes up. I love slapping them around with the facts on it.

3 posted on 04/28/2006 10:25:20 AM PDT by Names Ash Housewares
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To: screw boll


4 posted on 04/28/2006 10:49:06 AM PDT by Christian4Bush (FreeRepublic and Rush Limbaugh: kevlar protection from the Drive-By Media.)
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To: screw boll

Bush has said from the beginning that this was going to be a long war.

He's right.

5 posted on 04/28/2006 10:49:26 AM PDT by marron
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To: marron

the problem is they need to get the iraqis to actually fight for their OWN rights.

6 posted on 04/28/2006 11:07:54 AM PDT by annelizly
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To: screw boll
Everyone who thinks that the War on Terror would be over if we had Osama's body in a morgue, raise your hands.

Yeah. I didn't think so. 'Rats may think that way but the normal American knows better.

7 posted on 04/28/2006 12:14:06 PM PDT by FlingWingFlyer (Stop the importation of third world poverty to the USA. Seal the borders now!)
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To: marron

Liberal, Bush-bashing moonbats don't let little things like FACTS get in their way.

8 posted on 04/28/2006 12:23:43 PM PDT by Paul_N_Lakeside
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To: screw boll
The troops accomplished their mission of seizing Baghdad and deposing the Saddam regime brilliantly. To suggest otherwise is an insult to them and what they achieved.
9 posted on 04/28/2006 12:29:37 PM PDT by colorado tanker
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To: screw boll
Do the media even understand the difference between a mission, a campaign, and a war?

Also, the generals who were serving as media advisors told us at that time that "major combat operations" referred to clashes between large formations of combatants. It was a true statement.

The Lincoln flew around 8,000 sorties without a fatality. If the crew of that carrier didn't accomplish their mission, then no one did. Certainly the larger force, tasked with removing Saddam, had also accomplished theirs. God forbid the Commander-in-Chief recognize these oustanding accomplishments.

10 posted on 04/28/2006 12:38:58 PM PDT by Dilbert56
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To: Paul_N_Lakeside; marron

The truth to the left is that which advances their goals.

Factuality is irrelevant.

11 posted on 04/28/2006 2:37:12 PM PDT by Jacquerie (Democrats soil institutions)
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To: screw boll
As a fairly new FReeper, let me say welcome. It's nice to clear up disinformation from the leftist liars, isn't it?

Skip to comments.

a Navy commander | May 9., 2003 | dfu

Posted on 05/09/2003 1:56:27 PM PDT by doug from upland

After listening to the rantings and ravings of the DemocRATS who are both jealous and livid after seeing a beloved commander in chief do a tailhook landing on the USS ABRAHAM LINCOLN, I wanted to get the real story.

After about 5 calls and transfers and return calls, I just spoke with a Navy commander who deals with public relations. He is very high level, but because this issue is so sensitive, I agreed that I would not use his name.

When asked whether the visit of the president delayed the arrival of the Lincoln, the answer was a resounding "Absolutely not!" The Lincoln arrived when it was scheduled to arrive. Ships slow down and speed up all the time.

The Navy does not have its ships land early. No. It is just not done. It is a logistical nightmare. Tugs and other port services have to be arranged. In 1991, the USS THEODORE ROOSEVELT arrived 20 hours early off the coast of Virginia. It sat out there looking at land for 20 hours. And they never come to port at night.

There were 20-25,000 families and friends expecting to watch the return of the ship and greet their loved ones.

"Psychologically," said the commander, "it would have been a nightmare. People made plane reservations, hotel reservations, long trips by car. Imagine what it would have been like for them to arrive to meet there loved ones, but it turned out that they came a day late for the event. We would have had 20-25,000 people really angry with the U.S. Navy."

The commander gave me his worst scenario for a public relations nightmare. It would be a grandma who drove all the way from Des Moines to see her grandson arrive, only to be told that she didn't make it in time; that they decided to come to port early. What do they say to her?

The commander is amazed at this flap, which has been totally invented by the media. This should be a non-issue with them. Some in the media were sworn to silence, and they were given the May 2 date about 3-4 weeks ago. They knew it would be coming to port at that time. At the appropriate time, the crew and families were notified. You just do not change the date.

As to the landing on a Viking rather than Marine One. The costs are roughly the same. Fuel and other costs for that Viking were already allocated and spent. If the President was not aboard that plane, it would have made a landing on the ship anyway. It would have done so sooner or later because it was in the budget to do it.

What has been lost in all of this, according to the commander, is that it was the Navy's idea for the President to come aboard and make a tailhook landing. They opted for an F-18. Because of security, however, the White House opted for the Viking, a 4-seater which could accommodate Secret Service.

"We would do this again," said the commander. "Ever since President Franklin Roosevelt, every president has landed aboard a Navy ship."

We finished with a laugh at the media. Members of congress and journalists are flown in and not charged. And these are the people creating an issue where none should exist.

12 posted on 04/28/2006 5:30:39 PM PDT by doug from upland (Stopping Hillary should be a FreeRepublic Manhattan Project)
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To: screw boll

Three years after that speech, the mission of the sailors aboard that ship is STILL accomplished.

13 posted on 04/28/2006 5:31:40 PM PDT by Petronski (I love Cyborg!)
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To: screw boll
I remembered how hard I prayed that our troops wouldn't be hit with chems and that getting to Baghdad as quick as possible was the best plan.

I also remember that they expected house to house fighting and the death toll might be out of sight.

To all the idiots that thought Usama wouldn't "stand side by side" with Saddam's gorillas...guess were wrong.

And had Saddam got free from the UN and he was damn close, and Mission Not Been Accomplished, Usama would be relaxing in a palace, going over plans with Saddam for attacking the USA, instead of rotting in a cave.

14 posted on 04/28/2006 6:14:12 PM PDT by Sacajaweau (God Bless Our Troops!!)
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To: Names Ash Housewares


15 posted on 04/28/2006 6:14:59 PM PDT by petercooper (Cemeteries & the ignorant - comprising 2 of the largest Democrat voting blocs for the past 75 years.)
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To: Dilbert56
Thank you for your comment. Good points.

Give the facts to your lib friends. they will hate you!!!
16 posted on 04/29/2006 7:11:48 PM PDT by screw boll
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To: Petronski
You wrote: Three years after that speech, the mission of the sailors aboard that ship is STILL accomplished.

You said it in a nutshell. Good line!
17 posted on 04/29/2006 7:14:42 PM PDT by screw boll
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Comment #18 Removed by Moderator

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