Saturday, February 14, 2004

Bush AWOL: First witness, debunked 

Meanwhile a retired Alabama Air National Guard officer said he remembers Bush showing up for duty in Alabama in 1972, reading safety magazines and flight manuals in an office as he performed his weekend obligations.

Not bad duty at all!

"I saw him each drill period," retired Lt. Col. John "Bill" Calhoun said in a telephone interview ...

Well, at least that's checkable.

.... with The Associated Press from Daytona Beach, Fla., where he is preparing to watch this weekend's big NASCAR race.

Calhoun, whose name was supplied to the AP by a Republican close to Bush, is the first member of the 187th Tactical Reconnaissance Group to recall Bush distinctly at the Alabama base in the period of 1972-1973. He was the unit's flight safety officer.

"A Republican close to Bush".... I wonder who that could be.... And by the way, nice touch on the NASCAR thing, Karl ....

Then again, CBS says Calhoun's dates don't match the record:

"He sat in my office he would study his training manuals, read safety magazines. military type stuff," Calhoun told Roberts. Calhoun provided records to CBS News to prove he was on the base at the time. He says the President regularly drilled during the months of May through October 1972, when Mr. Bush was working on an election campaign.

"I know he was in there on drills, uh, four months. And it could have been five and it even could have been six."

But Calhoun's account appears to be at odds with records released by the White House. They show that President Bush logged no Guard duty -- anywhere -- from April 17th until October 28th.

And former Guard Pilot Bob Mintz -- who was with the Alabama unit at the time -- says the base was all abuzz about a politically-connected Lieutenant coming in. But Mintz claims he never saw Mr. Bush -- and expects the newcomer would have stood out.
(via reader Gaska at CalPundit.
Golly. Our ever-changing stories....

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