Day By Day

Monday, February 18, 2008

Bush in Africa

President Bush's five-nation trip to Africa, aimed at highlighting the problems of epidemic diseases on the continent, has not gotten a great deal of play in the US media, and what coverage there has been has usually been critical. Bush is assailed for not visiting the worst trouble spots, where civil wars are raging. This president, who has done more for the peoples of Africa than all other world leaders combined and much, much more than any other American president, is criticized for not doing more.

You know how it goes.

By contrast, Bill Clinton's extravagant Africa excursion, which consisted of little more than a series of photo-ops, was widely praised in the western media.

At least the WaPo admits:

By all accounts, Bush has done more to combat the AIDS pandemic that has devastated Africa than any other president, and even his harshest critics usually credit him for paying attention to a region often neglected by Washington. Much of the world has soured on the United States, but surveys by the Pew Global Attitudes Project show that Africa is one place where it is held in high regard.

Of course, the Post then goes on to dismiss the trip as a cynical exercise in "legacy building". No guys, that's what Bill Clinton does -- Bush is a far better man than his predecessor.

Read it here.

The New York Times is even worse.

DAR ES SALAAM, Tanzania — President Bush has been smothered with affection here, never more so than on Sunday, when he sat at a wooden desk under a sweltering sun with President Jakaya Kikwete by his side and signed a $698 million grant of foreign aid to Tanzania. But while people here in the capital city of this East African nation are excited about Mr. Bush, another American politician seems to excite them even more — Senator Barack Obama. Mr. Bush is on a six-day, five-country tour to spotlight American efforts to fight poverty and disease in Africa. Though the president’s face is on billboards all over town, the name Obama is on the lips of Tanzanians — from taxi drivers to city merchants to the artisans who sell wooden Masai warriors in makeshift stalls at a dusty open-air market on the outskirts of town.
Way to stay "on message" guys. Read it here.

No matter how much the MSM works to diminish him, President Bush's actions with regard to Africa stand as a magnificent and generous effort, unparalleled by any of his contemporaries or predecessors.

Gateway Pundit has more here.