Every chapter of George W. Bush’ memoir, “Decision Points,” not only provides a glimpse on the human side of Bush Jr., but also deals with the major themes in his presidency.
I have to be honest here: the main reason I decided I want to read this book is because I would like to see what he has to say about his war in Iraq, and how his initial expectations of finding Saddam Hussein’s nonexistent weapon of mass destruction turned into one of his biggest flops.
He had his justifications that Saddam Hussein’s was a dangerous regime, of course. However, one could not help but wonder why the American military had not similarly liberated Iran and North Korea from their respective tyrannies, two dangerous countries equally capable of inciting discord and endangering American lives. Only several pages were dedicated to the Iran and North Korea issue. I only wished he had elaborated more, at the very least he could have defined what kind of framework does USA have to build in the future to defuse the threats of those two rogue entities.
The financial crisis which most of the public dub as the main “failure” of his presidency was also one of the main discourse of this book. Before the September 11 hit, he had foreseen the Internet bubble burst, when he introduced tax cuts to ordinary Americans. It did hit him hard before he even had his one-year anniversary as a president though: soon after the September 11 tragedy, “the Dow Jones plunged 684 points, the biggest single-day drop in history at that point.” Which is why he could not stress the importance even better: the less success the terrorist organizations could achieve in threatening the world stability, the better. And somehow he does quite a convincing job in explaining how the victories of kicking Taliban out of the Afghan throne make the Middle East a more stable place.
Nonetheless, he also highlighted some of his (less publicized) legacies, such as signing the No Child Left Behind policy, modernizing the Medicare system, fighting the global AIDS, and helping secure the framework for the admission of several Eastern European nations into NATO.
Some of his accounts, which at times can be quite subjective, could turn out to be fascinating reads too. Regardless of what you think of his presidency, it can be assured that this book will not be a disappointing read, especially for American history buffs.
Thomas Andrikus is a student in Northern Kentucky University. His blog is at http://foreignprophecies.blogspot.com