|In the 835 days Americans have passed since the inauguration of George W. Bush, we have come to know him as a man who wears many masks to suit a variety of political purposes. Even before he won the lawsuit that put him in his lofty position, we saw a man who cloaked his vision in terms that smacked of humility. "Ours will be a humble nation," Bush said during the Presidential debates. There are a number of words which can be applied to the actions of this administration, but "humble" is not one of them. At the time, however, it suited his purposes to make Americans believe he saw himself as unassuming, perhaps even small.
This was the same man, however, who mocked Texas death row inmate Karla Faye Tucker so viciously before she rode the lightning to whatever awaits us on the Other Side. He was asked, in an interview for Talk Magazine during the campaign, what Tucker might say to him if she were given the chance to plead for her life. "Please," said Bush with pinched face and lips drawn down in a quivering bow as he imitated the woman about to die, "don't kill me." Then he laughed.
|Another mask was donned by Bush on the deck of that aircraft carrier, one whose implications are far more dire and disturbing. Bush was there to tell the world that combat operations in Iraq had ceased. He did not go so far as to declare victory, as such a declaration would have required, under the Geneva Convention, the release of POWs and the withdrawal of American forces. The banner hanging across the control tower -- "Mission Accomplished" -- said all that needed to be said.
In his remarks, Bush closed with a paraphrasing of the Book of Isaiah: "In the words of the prophet Isaiah, 'To the captives, 'come out,' and to those in darkness, 'be free,''"
This was a quotation from Chapter 61 of Isaiah, the very book Jesus Christ used when proclaiming that Isaiah's prophesies of the Messiah had come true. Using this passage from Isaiah, Jesus presented himself as the Son of God in Nazareth. Thus it is told in Luke, Chapter 4, Verses 16-22: