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A Fitting Sacrifice

Since launching the invasion of Iraq five years ago, President George W. Bush has taken heat for placing an enormous bulk of the sacrifice on members of the U.S. armed forces, even as he’s asked the rest of the country to shoulder virtually none of the burden. It seems those critics spoke too soon. In an interview with The Politico yesterday, Bush revealed that he gave up golfing in 2003 “in solidarity” with the military families whose sons and daughters were dying overseas.

From this morning’s Washington Post:

“I don’t want some mom whose son may have recently died to see the commander in chief playing golf," Bush said in a White House interview with the Politico. "I feel I owe it to the families to be as — to be in solidarity as best as I can with them. And I think playing golf during a war just sends the wrong signal."

Bush said he decided to stop playing golf on Aug. 19, 2003, when a truck bomb in Baghdad killed U.N. special representative Sergio Vieira de Mello and more than a dozen others.

He said he received word of the attack while playing golf during a stay at the family ranch near Crawford, Tex. Press reports at the time indicate he took the call from Condoleezza Rice then his national security adviser.

"They pulled me off the golf course, and I said it’s just not worth it anymore to do," Bush said in yesterday’s interview.

“It,” in this case, means golf, of course. Not the war. This was not, after all, an epiphany.

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