Washington Post Reporter Lois Romano Brings Mainstream Media Ever-so-Close to the Truth About Bush's AWOL
To: Lois Romano, Washington Post Reporter
From: Robert E. Reynolds
Date: February 3, 2004
First of all I want to congratulate on an exceptionally fine article. Its the best by far of those involving the recent flap.
Since the original challenges in 2000 by Bob Kerrey, Daniel Inouye, and Max Cleland more records have become available. One site for this is http://users.cis.net/coldfeet/document.htm
It has a lot of the documents in dispute. Two in particular may be of help to you:
These are the official military documents relating to his duty and base assignments. They show that despite his claims that he remembers serving in Alabama he never served in any unit other than the one at Ellington AFB.
doc. 10 is a page from his Officer Personnel record. It is very important since it goes with the officer on any assignment, permanent or temporary. So the claims by Bush and by his spokespersons have no authenticity according to his official records. It may be why in 2000 they refused to release his records.
It is also important for another reason. When it was closed out you will note that he was not given any credits for service in 1973. This is important because he claims that he performed such service and a "document" has been provided that supposedly shows credits for such service. But there is a dispute about the document. "George" magazine printed the document with Bush's name on it, but subsequently it was determined that either they or the person providing it to them added that name and the name was not on the source document. Here are two links to those documents:
I hope you find this useful information. I do believe insufficient attention has been paid to the particular role of Bush as a reservists. If you run a search you find that reservists and national guardsmen today are being picked up for AWOL and desertion and being punished for it. These are just everyday folks filling for the most part routine slots.
Bush on the other hand had received a million dollars worth of flight training and was assigned as fighter pilot to an ANG unit assigned important responsibilities in the air defense of the continental United States. Just as today, there was a war going on then and the regular services were being deployed overseas. The ANG and AF Reserve units had key responsibilities for air defense. So failure to perform ones duty and complete ones military obligation is not something to be dismissed as missing a meeting and making it up later.
Bush can not complain about this being a political attack. After all it was his campaign that raised questions about Sen. McCain's mental stability and his conduct as a POW. In 2002 they ran ads questioning the patriotism of multiple amputee Max Cleland. Both were despicable acts.
He also revels in his role as Commander in Chief, landing on flight decks, making speeches to captive military audiences to loud "Hoo ha's" while wearing his CIC flight jacket or other military garb, and even having Rumsfeld ordering all commanders of major military commands to stop using "Commander in Chief" a long standing practice. Rumsfeld made the point that there is only (now) one Commander in Chief.
Bush has sent us into a war that has killed hundreds of our best young citizens and wounded thousands more. He needs to be held to account.
His official records indicate that he stopped his service sometime before May of 1972 , two years before the end of his obligation to the Ready Reserve. There is no disputing that. That he received an honorable discharge is not a testament to his honorable service, but rather one that indicates that he received preferential treatment not available to those being charged with AWOL and desertion today.
As an AF veteran and one that also served in the reserves I can assure you that I could not have just stopped showing up, and I could not have skipped meeting and made them up later. I would have been charged under the Uniform Code of Military Justice either as AWOL (failure to report for duty) or for Desertion (failure to report for duty over 30 days). Ask any veteran and they will tell you the same.