The Untold Story of President Bush

William McGurn, Chief White House Speechwriter  from 01 – 07, wrote a piece for the Wall Street Journal’s Opinion Journal, offering a glimpse into the character of President Bush.  He describes the on-going relationship between the President and Julie McPhillips, mother of Lt. Brian McPhillips who was killed in the initial Iraq invasion in 2003.  Some excerpts:


When Mrs. McPhillips came to the White House, she was joined by her husband, David — a Marine combat vet of Vietnam — as well as Brian’s younger sister, Carolyn. They sat on one of the sofas in the Oval Office. When the president entered the room, he said, “I have two daughters, and I can’t imagine what it would be like to meet with the man who was responsible for their death.”

“It’s comforting,” Mrs. McPhillips replied softly. And thence commenced a 45-minute exchange about Brian, about Iraq, about what the president hoped to accomplish in the Middle East, and so on…At various points, their conversation was punctuated with observations on the challenges and consolations of faith.

I was never lucky enough to know Brian McPhillips in life. I know enough, however, to recognize in this Providence College graduate the kind of man you hope would be leading your son if your son were going into battle. The kind of man you pray will be waiting at the altar the day you walk your daughter up the aisle.

These men are not born; they are formed — by families like the McPhillips, by institutions such as the Marine Corps, and by the convictions that extort sacrifices from any who dare to live by them.


…on a day that celebrates the arrival of hope into our world, the McPhillips refuse to concede the last word to grief. This Christmas, Mr. Bush’s last as commander in chief, Mrs. McPhillips would like him to know how grateful they are that Brian served a president who was determined, at great cost to his own popularity, to ensure that their son’s sacrifice would not be in vain.

“Mr. President,” she says, “Brian was proud to be a Marine. And he carried within him the same light that you do — a faith in God, in America, and in the dignity and worth of every man, woman, and child on this earth.”

“A blessed Christmas for you and your family, Mr. President.”

One of the offenses of the left-leaning media establishment is it’s contempt for the values of honor, duty, commitment, and faith.  Thus, a spiteful Cindy Sheehan is glorified as the public face of grieving families of fallen warriors.  The hundreds, if not thousands of families who don’t want to be identified with her are simply ignored, and thus in the mind of much the public, don’t exist.

Do yourself a favor and read the whole editorial.

1 Comment so far

  1. aaa again on December 26th, 2008

    There is nothing to say about this post except Bravo to the McPhillips family, and thank you to Mr. McGurn and Mr. Boomerjeff for keeping this proper and responsible perspective in the public discourse.