In the spirit of the "Fake TownHall Meetings" Bush has become known for, an "impromptu" teleconference to Tikrit, Iraq has backfired on him. Is there no end to the spin. Fear and Incompetence spur Bush from one disaster to the next. I found extremely profound the statement he made about wishing he could be there in person. What is the deal...? Iraq not even safe enough for another fake turkey photo-op...? Very telling when you read between the lines. - fc
Behind the Scenes of Operation Photo-Op
Earlier today, President Bush held an "impromptu" public teleconference with a group of U.S. soldiers based in Tikrit, Iraq.
Reporters could clearly hear White House handlers prepping the troops for President Bush's photo-op:
WH Pooler Geoff Earle of the New York Post writes of the teleconference: "The soldiers, nine U.S. men and one U.S. woman, plus an Iraqi, had been tipped off in advance about the questions in the highly scripted event. Allison Barber, deputy assistant to the Secretary of Defense for internal communication, could be heard asking one soldier before the start of the event, "Who are we going to give that [question] to?"
(sub. req'd) has published this transcript of pool footage featuring a Bush aide "who was, in her own words, 'scripting' the soldiers shortly before their 'conversation' with Bush":
WH aide: "Capt. Kennedy are you ready?"
Kennedy: "I am ready, ma'am."
WH aide: "Okay this is for the money. We are going to time this and remember that if the president cuts it short, if he asks more questions, if you have the microphone and he follows up with a question to you, no matter who has it, Captain Pratt if you have the microphone and the president hears something and he wants more information, you just keep that microphone and talk to the president."
WH aide: "But if he gives us a question that is not something that we have scripted Captain Kennedy you are going to have the mic and that's your chance to impress us all."
WH aide: "Which won't be a problem for you."
A quote from the "photo-op" via atrios
Bush: "I wish I could be there to see you face to face and thank you personally. Probably a little early for me to go to Tikrit. Perhaps one of these days the situation will be such that I'll be able to get back to Iraq."