I was driving to Washington, D.C. to attend a conference on stopping a U.S. war with Iran when I heard the news that former President George H. W. Bush died (“President navigated end of the Cold War,” Dec. 2). This news took me back to January 20, 1989 when the Baltimore Pledge of Resistance did a protest on 41’s inauguration. We were protesting the Reagan-Bush administration’s support for death squads in Central America and the lack of coverage of this issue by The Baltimore Sun.
Of course, the obituaries will be quite effusive in claiming he had great accomplishments. However, peace and justice activists who remember Mr. Bush as vice president and then president would be much more critical of his time in office. A critique would start with the use of the infamous Willie Horton ad while he was campaigning for president.
Under President Bush’s invasion of Iraq, a U.S. airstrike on an air-raid shelter in the Amiriyah neighborhood of Baghdad killed some 400 civilians. And then there was the Iran-Contra affair in which the U.S. traded missiles for hostages in Iran and used the proceeds of those arms sales to fund Contra terrorists in Nicaragua. This happened while he was vice president. Once he was president, he pardoned six defendants including former Defense Secretary Caspar Weinberger.
It is my opinion that Mr. Bush decided to invade Panama for domestic political reasons. This invasion was targeted at Panamanian strongman Manual Noriega who was a U.S. asset for many years. It is still unclear how many thousands of civilians were killed during the invasion.
This is just a short list of why we protested the George H. W. Bush administration. It is important that we present an accurate history of what transpired during his time in White House. Otherwise, a considerable number of people will accept the false narrative being presented by his sycophants.
Max Obuszewski, Baltimore