Commentators on NPR’s All Things Considered this afternoon remarked that Bush’s tone on the day of a proposed Hezbollah-Israel ceasefire seems rather non-conciliatory.
They are right. I’d take that a step further. As Nasrallah’s people handed out what amounted to: Welcome home; We won flyers to returning Lebanese exiles and Nasrallah himself declared strategic victory, Bush named Hezbollah responsible for the entire shebang – the death, the conflict, the displaced.
THEN, in the same sentence, Bush placed the reaching-towards-nukes Iran into the evil axis alongside Iraq and Afghanistan – zig-zagging, as it were. Naming Iran but not really naming them. Pointing the long arm but with elbow only. This is the same Iran responsible for arming/building up the Hezbollah. The same axis (Iran excepting, for the moment) the U.S. is currently engaged with in war.
Rhetoric? I hope so. But doubtful. Think about it: We’re on day 1 of a U.S./France/UN brokered ceasefire and G.W. is sounding very un-delighted. Whipping up the winds, as it were.
Unless caught off mike by accident/on purpose, U.S. front people are generally careful & calculated regarding public talk.