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poems from God Bless
Artwork: Bush/Osama Lipstick and eyebrow pencil on paper by
Debra Di Blasi
'George W. Bush' © 2007 Debra Di Blasi
'Osama Bin Laden' © 2007 Debra Di Blasi
click to enlarge

   

October 2002

I want to explain to you about Saddam Hussein, just
       quickly, if I might.
The facts and the history of Iraq are pretty clear to me.
If we know Saddam Hussein has dangerous weapons
       today —
and we do — does it make any sense for the world to
       wait?

We never seek to impose our culture or our form of
       government.
We just want to live under those universal values, God-
       given values.
We’ve got to be clear-eyed about the new dangers we
       face.
I don’t view this as a political discourse or a political
       debate.

The dictator of Iraq is a student of Stalin.
America is a friend to the people of Iraq.
We’ve got to button up our homeland. And, therefore, I
       will continue to speak
clearly about good and evil. It starts with upholding
       doctrine.

Some worry that a change of leadership in Iraq could
       create instability
and make the situation worse. The situation could hardly
       get worse.
We’re liberators in this case, and we’ll always be
       liberators.
Our country never has the intention of conquering
       anybody.

We have no plans to use our military until — unless we
       need to.
The Iraqi people…will be the first to benefit.
There is universal agreement that Saddam Hussein poses
       a serious threat.
Our job is to make the world a more peaceful place. That’s
       what we’ve got to do.

Let me explain to you why this country is determined.
If we hold our values, God-given values, here’s what’s
       going to happen:
the long captivity of Iraq will end, and an era of new hope
       will begin.
To fight evil, all you’ve got to do is do some good.

Interleaf

We are determined, with God’s will,
       to continue our struggle,

to build on what we’ve done before
       against the merchants of war,
but I make this peace proposal,
       a commitment to cease all
operations against any state
       that will keep a pledge not
to attack Muslims or intervene
       in our affairs — even
America. We can reaffirm
       this peace with each new term
of office for its president,
       upon mutual consent.
It will take effect upon departure
       of the last soldier
from Islamic lands. If you choose war,
       we stand ready for war,
if you choose peace, we will keep the peace.
       Now you must make your choice.
To save your own blood is in your powers:
       simply stop spilling ours.

 

September 2003 >>

   
divider

H. L. Hix
Writer’s Statement

These poems come from a project entitled God Bless, which will be published later this year by Etruscan Press. All passages in the Bush poems were spoken by Bush during the month identified in the poem’s title, and all are quoted verbatim, as they appear on the official White House web site, www.whitehouse.gov. The “interleaves” imitate arguments from the public statements of Osama bin Laden. Only the italicized passages are direct quotations from bin Laden. My source for bin Laden’s discourses was Messages to the World: The Statements of Osama bin Laden, ed. Bruce Lawrence.

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