Bush's National Guard Service fact has evidence to support statements and fiction is not based on truth but is created. National Guard service is a major part of the political campaign this year as well as last year and is a topic that is debated about extensively. George W. Bush's duty in the National Guard Service had facts tagged to it, but also caused critics and those who do not support Bush attached to his service, to speculate. George Bush's history in the National Guard first started in 1968 when he completed the qualifications to be an office. At this time Bush was still attending Yale University.
His father was heavily involved in politics and he was accused of getting his son into the Texas Air National Guard, because of his political power. Bush received an interview with Walter B. Stadt and his application to the National Guard and received pilot training, and was quickly accepted. In the same year Bush received his Bachelor of Arts degree from Yale University. In July of 1968 Bush went to basic military training in San Antonio, Texas and by August of that year he completed his basic training. From November to December of 1969 Bush went to undergraduate training to be a pilot, and was trained to fly a standard aircraft.
In May of 1972 Bush asked for a 3 month transfer to a base in Alabama, but eventually returned to Texas in November of 1972. Bush is credited with serving 226 days in his first year, 313 in his second year, and after he was trained to fly he got 46 days of duty added to his name. During the time in question of Bush's absence he only received 22 days of duty. Bush completed his service with the Air National Guard in the year of 1973 when he requested to be discharged from the Texas Air National Guard and transfer to the Air Reserve Personnel Center. The transfer was approved even though many believe it should have been denied since he had a sporadic attendance record. This is where controversies come up about Bush completing his time in the Guard.
Records from the National Guard become a factor in exploiting Bush's time of absence in the Texas Air National Guard. Records show Bush served his time admirably in his stay in the Guard up until 1972 and 1973, the last two years in his service with the National Guard. These records again show Bush did not show up for training with the other troops for a period of time as long as six months at a time. In January 1972, Bush was ordered to be present three days for physiological training in Texas. These required training sessions were held at the Laredo Air Force Base and when the documents at the Laredo Air Force Base came up about his attendance records, they shown that Bush was credited for his duty training for the three days that where spoken of. Pilots at this time were required to restore their flight training every three years.
Bush did not complete this training and eventually skipped the yearly medical exam and was told he could not fly. Bush does not deny that he skipped the exam, but also says he was planning on training with the Alabama Air National Guard. He planned on training with the Alabama crew because a Bush family friend campaign was going to be on the United States Senate. Training is an important part of being a member in the Texas Air National Guard and again, records have shown that Bush did not go to training one time between middle April to the end of October in the year of 1972.
Although not attending any training programs, he is credited with six days in October and November 1972. Many people believe this is when he served his time with the Alabama Air National Guard. When the Alabama Air National Guard service brought their records out they said that Bush never had any training or did not complete any drills at their base. Ironically, their records also point out that Bush only had a dental examination at the base in January 1973. Bush believes and swears that he completed his time in the Guard and did nothing to dishonor his time in the service. He even is quoted as saying "I can remember walking up to my F-102 fighter and seeing the mechanics there, I was on the same team as them, and I relied on them...
The responsibility to show up and do your job" (Paine 2). Bush believes in having responsibility to do your job, but looking at the documents it seems like Bush did not live up to his word. AWOL, which is the abbreviation for Absent WithOut Leave. This is something that Bush was never actually charged with and never shows up in any of his records. The evidence shown is documentation that he was not able to be at the mandatory Guard drills.
for that six month period. The Air Force spent a large sum of money and time into training these pilots and Bush displayed disrespect when he didn't report to his training. Air Force Soldiers have a deep belief in AWOL, and when someone is accused of it, it is looked down upon. Writer Tom Paine says, "The lack of regular attendance goes against the basic concept of a National Guard kept strong by citizen soldiers who maintain their skills through regular training" (Paine 2).
The National Guard Bureau in Arlington, Virginia found an interesting document that states when Bush enlisted his commitment ran until May 26, 1974. Bush discharged in October of 1973, further showing his lack of dedication. The A RPC has since tacked on another six months to Bush's commitment. Due to this extra six months, Bush has not fulfilled as much time as thought to have completed in the first place. Many say Bush may have completed this time in the Service, but they know he did not complete it in the manner he was supposed to. They believe he did not attend any drills to complete his time.
He never did drills again after the day he enrolled at Harvard University. The way Bush completed his time was by adding his name to a paper unit in Denver, Colorado where he had no responsibility to do any duty or show up at all. George Bush was part of both the Alabama and Texas Air National Guard and records show that he received pay checks from being on the payroll. It shows that he did do some time at both bases, but it raises the question whether or not he completed his time with the correct requirements. The lack of attendance for George Bush should have resulted in him being asked to stay longer in his duty instead of being discharged in 1973. The "missing year" as people call it is a cause for ordering George Bush to stay on duty for an extended period in time up to two years.
If Bush was ordered to do that he would have had to be in Vietnam during the war. He would not have been ignorant to this since he signed a paper which listed the consequences for a lack of attendance or participation. Bush could have also faced a court martial who would ask the two officers who signed his discharge. These officers would not have signed off the papers for Bush to be discharged if they knew he had not completed his time in the Guard, if they had done so they could be subject to their careers ended early and their medals and honors stripped from them.
If it went public in a trial that one Colonel and squadron commander let one of his men go missing in drills for an extended period of time it would be the cause of more embarrassment to the National Guard. Bush's military service is a campaign issue in the 2004 election. Even though it was a long time since Bush was apart of the Guard, military personnel are still upset about it. As one military source explains "In short, for several hundred thousand dollars we tax payers spent on getting Bush trained as a fighter jock, he repaid us with sixty-eight days of active duty... I've spent more time cleaning up latrines then he did flying" (Paine 2).
John Kerry often brought up Bush's military service in his campaign. Many people are upset about Bush's absence in the Guard and wonder how he can send troops overseas to do a job when he never finished his duty in the National Guard. Skeptics believe that Bush ran from his duty and asked for discharge early because he did not want to go overseas into Vietnam. Bush says his reason for leaving eight months early is because he wanted to further his education, which is why he enrolled at Harvard University.
In the 2000 presidential election a story leaked out about Bush's Driving While Impaired conviction in 1976. A week prior, the story got out about his absence in the Guard. There is a theory that states Bush supporters put the DWI conviction out there to cover a bigger scandal that was happening. While people focused on the DWI conviction, angry veterans were trying to bring up the absence of Bush while he was still in duty. The DWI conviction became a bigger controversy and the "missing year" died down and was irrelevant.
When Bush was asked about his missing time, he refused to talk about it in his campaign. Now, why would someone that is running the Office of Commander and Chief of the US Armed Forces refuse to discuss his service in the military? It seems too many, that Bush and his supporters are trying to cover up something that is vital to an opponent's campaign. It is true that Bush and Al Gore decided not to make their time in service an issue in the election, but something to this level should have been brought up. George Bush's military service became a huge issue in the public and on primetime television.
Alabama veterans were so upset about Bush saying he was with the Alabama unit, that they offered a $1, 000 reward to anyone that could bring together any documents or evidence to the fact that Bush served for the Alabama unit. To this date, nobody has been able to produce anything saying that he did. The prize is left unclaimed and more rewards have come to be since this time. The creator of the cartoon Doonesby, Garry Trudeau, put together a reward of $10, 000 to anybody that could come forth that saw George Bush at the required drills during his missing time of duty.
To this day, no one has yet to claim the reward. A company called "Texas by Truth" sent out a reward of $50, 000 to anybody that had seen or had evidence that Bush completed his duties. His military absence was greatly explored on CBS, ABC, and many other news networks. They discussed and analyzed it in order to attempt to reach a conclusion. Democrats quickly jumped on George Bush's AWOL attendance in the National Guard and they have brought up any records and documents. The released documents in the paper around the time of the 2004 election were being used to bring down Bush's campaign and show that he is not a good leader for this country since he did not fulfill his obligations to the Guard.
Many questions are always asked to try and understand the story such as "Why didn't he meet his duty?" After 336 hours of flight training, why did the president miss a medical exam and lose his flight status? Why did George Bush refuse to take his medical exam? (Herman Internet) This is what people do not understand and want to figure out. This is the basis of controversy over what happened during Bush's 1968 to 1973 run in the National Guard. Democrats believe George Bush got into the National Guard by his father's connections and that he had zero qualifications to be apart of Texas Air National Guard. They received this information from Lt. Governor Ben Barnes who went on to the show "60 Minutes" to explain Bush had no reason being in the National Guard. Republicans reject this statement saying "An individual with zero credibility who constantly contradicts himself and is a John Kerry supporter (Herman Internet)." This is what Bush campaign spokesman Reed Dickens believes about the comments from Lt.
Barnes. Critics of George Bush tend to put out false information that they have no credibility to speak on. This has become a trend that Bush supporters and campaign speakers are upset about which causes them to retaliate with verbal attacks back on the critics. The critics main points state that Bush on both occasions of AWOL in the National Guard, never received discipline or any type of punishment. The first thing is it's a disgrace to be AWOL during your time of duty, but to go without punishment is just another point on how George Bush got special treatment during his time of duty. The military service in the United States is taken seriously and something that is not a joke.
The problem is people say George Bush outsmarted the military service in not showing up for mandatory drills, being AWOL for a long period of time, and never finishing his obligations to the Texas Air National Guard. The Globe said "Its re-examination of Bush's record... showed that Bush's attendance at required training drills was so irregular that his superiors could have disciplined him or ordered him to active duty in 1972-1974 (Turkish Press Internet)." There are many questions about George W. Bush's service in the Texas Air National Guard and his time with the Alabama unit from 1968-1973.
We can look at records, documents, and analyze interviews, but we will never be able to know exactly what happened during his time. The records do not match up with interviews and vice versa. George Bush denies not completing his time in the service and some veterans agree with him while some veterans are avid on their opinions that Bush still needs to finish his required active duty in the National Guard. Bush's absence during a period of time in 1972-1973 is an issue that was discussed heavily in every aspect of last year's election. During the 2004 election, Bush was trying not to make it an issue, but it was something that could have changed the minds of voters more than a couple of percents. Veterans take pride in knowing that they served their country well and that they completed the time that they were assigned to serve.
When veterans hear about how someone takes an easy way out by taking advantage of their connections, it is a real dishonor to those who served their time for our country. Works Cited " Bush's National Guard Record Back In The Critical Spotlight." September 08, 2004. Turkish Press. April 21, 2005 web "Bush's National Guard Service is 'a non story'." USA Today September 14, 2004, April 21, 2005"George W. Bush military service controversy." December 2, 2004 April 21, 2005.
Herman, Ken. "Bush's National Guard service under fire again." Toronto Star (Canada) September 9, 2004 April 21, 2005 Herman, Ken. "Democrats revisit Bush's National Guard Service." September 9, 2004 web "More Bush military records found after officers sign oath saying all disclosed." Community Custom Wire October 15, 2004 April 21, 2005"Timeline of Bush's National Guard Service." February 10, 2004. April 21, 2005.