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The World Leader Who Didnít Attend Churchill's Funeral
Townhall.com ^ | December 11, 2013 | David Stokes

Posted on 12/11/2013 12:16:04 PM PST by Kaslin

Why did one of the most politically savvy leaders ever to occupy the White House—Lyndon Baines Johnson—decide not to attend the funeral of Winston Churchill in 1965? And why didn’t he send his Vice President, Hubert Humphrey? Questions remain nearly 49 years later.

Nearly 100 world leaders are now making their way to South Africa for the state funeral of Nelson Mandela. It will be a who’s who of global power-players. It’s important for them to be there, because it’s a risky thing to miss a great man’s funeral.

President Obama invited George W. Bush and Bill Clinton, and their wives, to join him on Air Force One for the trek to Johannesburg. When Anwar Sadat was assassinated in October 1981, President Ronald Reagan’s security team strongly advised against him traveling to Egypt.

That was just a few months after Reagan was seriously wounded and barely escaped death at the hands of a would-be assassin, so the concerns were understandable. Mr. Reagan decided to play a “Presidential Hat Trick.” And the next day Jimmy Carter, Gerald Ford, and Richard Nixon boarded the presidential jet for the journey. Because Secretary of State Alexander Haig was “head” of the official delegation, he claimed the President’s Quarters for himself, leaving the three formers to make do in coach.

Churchill died at the age of 90 on January 24, 1965, after a series of debilitating strokes. His final illness became an international vigil for nearly two weeks, so there was plenty of time for world governments to prepare.

In fact, the British government had been prepared for a long time. More than ten years earlier, at the direction of Queen Elizabeth II, a plan called, “Operation Hope Not” had been developed for Winston’s eventual passing.

Lyndon Johnson was inaugurated for a full term on January 20, 1965, following his landslide electoral victory the previous November. He was at the top of his political game and riding high in the polls. But a few days later, on the night Churchill died, LBJ called seven reporters to his bedroom at the White House and told them that his doctors had advised him not to fly to London. He said: “I don’t have the bouncy feeling that I usually have.”

Presumably because “no bouncy feeling” isn’t an actual recognized disease, the “official” diagnosis was a bad cold.

He also told them that he was not sending Vice President Humphrey, but instead he would send Secretary of State Dean Rusk (who didn’t actually attend either, citing illness) and Supreme Court Chief Justice Earl Warren. Johnson also noted that former President Eisenhower was attending as a private citizen. The grand farewell for Churchill was a global media event, watched on television by more people than President Kennedy’s funeral fourteen months earlier.

The reporters at his bedside described Johnson as looking “sicker” than they had expected: “Hair disheveled, he lay in a four-poster, canopied bed speaking softly, coughing lightly from time to time and blowing his nose.”

Johnson was widely criticized—here and abroad—for his failure to make the trip. Many in the British government saw it as a slight. And in some ways it represented a minor setback in American/Anglo relations at a crucial time in the Cold War.

Some of President Johnson’s biographers take great pains to write about the man’s energy and perseverance. For example, Robert A. Caro writes in his tome, The Years of Lyndon Johnson: Master of the Senate, about how the man had regularly “refused to allow the illness to interfere” with his work habits. And how LBJ drove himself “mercilessly” even when he was supposed to be ill, with aides wondering, “how could a man have such energy if there was something seriously wrong with him?”

This description flies in the face of the image Johnson projected to the journalists that day.

A couple of weeks later, in a White House press conference, Johnson seemed to reveal a hint of thin skin when he was asked about his decisions related to Churchill’s funeral:

“I am glad to have the press reactions and the reactions abroad on the protocol involved in connection with funerals…In the light of your interest and other interests, I may have made a mistake by asking the Chief Justice to go and not asking the Vice President. I will bear in mind in connection act in accordance with our national interest.”

Soon after Johnson’s non-apology apology, someone coined the term “credibility gap” and affixed it to Lyndon Johnson. As with many things about LBJ, the truth is elusive.


TOPICS: Culture/Society; Editorial; United Kingdom
KEYWORDS: barack0bama; churchillfuneral; greatbritain; lbj; ronaldreagan; winstonchurchil

1 posted on 12/11/2013 12:16:04 PM PST by Kaslin
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To: Kaslin

Did LBJ have heart attack few months before

Also I understand Reagan didn’t make it because dude got just wounded he need time to recover


2 posted on 12/11/2013 12:17:29 PM PST by SevenofNine (We are Freepers, all your media bases belong to us ,resistance is futile)
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To: SevenofNine

This piece is to give BO cover for being shown to be the Child that he is

That photographer, bless him, is on a world of trouble right now


3 posted on 12/11/2013 12:23:27 PM PST by stanne
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To: Kaslin

“Because Secretary of State Alexander Haig was “head” of the official delegation, he claimed the President’s Quarters for himself, leaving the three formers to make do in coach.”

Al Haig was in charge, there on Air Force One.

I bet he even put on the Air Force One Presidential jacket.

He really wanted that job.


4 posted on 12/11/2013 12:23:38 PM PST by Oliviaforever
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To: SevenofNine
Did LBJ have heart attack few months before

Eight years before. In 1955.

5 posted on 12/11/2013 12:23:47 PM PST by DoodleDawg
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To: Kaslin

LBJ, like BO, was an a**hat who despised Churchill.


6 posted on 12/11/2013 12:24:40 PM PST by Vigilanteman (Obama: Fake black man. Fake Messiah. Fake American. How many fakes can you fit in one Zer0?)
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To: Kaslin

I recall conversations amongst the adults when I was a young buck. My predominantly Republican paternal family used to rail against LBJ as a hard-hitting, ruthless politico while the union-loving Democrat maternal side of my family used to extol his virtues as a creator of freedom and liberty.

As an adult, I can see now that the latter was full of crap.


7 posted on 12/11/2013 12:26:40 PM PST by rarestia (It's time to water the Tree of Liberty.)
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To: Kaslin
The reporters at his bedside described Johnson as looking “sicker” than they had expected
Too bad the MFer didn't die. No "War" on Poverty and no Vietnam "Conflict."Never forget ...
8 posted on 12/11/2013 12:27:41 PM PST by oh8eleven (RVN '67-'68)
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To: oh8eleven

Or “Great Society”.


9 posted on 12/11/2013 12:29:24 PM PST by BipolarBob
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To: Kaslin

Sickness doesn’t explain why no one else was dispatched. I thought the real reason was because Churchill hadn’t attended Roosevelt’s funeral 20 years before.


10 posted on 12/11/2013 12:29:45 PM PST by erlayman
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To: Kaslin

The US “Presidents” I DESPISE:
FDR
LBJ
Obama
“Teddy” Roosevelt
Woodrow Wilson


11 posted on 12/11/2013 12:33:19 PM PST by US Navy Vet (Go Packers! Go Rockies! Go Boston Bruins! See, I'm "Diverse"!)
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To: Kaslin

He was still feeling guilty for having JFK assassinated.


12 posted on 12/11/2013 12:38:53 PM PST by TheRhinelander
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To: US Navy Vet

Just out of curiosity, why Teddy R? Most republicans like him.


13 posted on 12/11/2013 12:43:20 PM PST by gemoftheocean (...geez, this all seems so straight forward and logical to me...)
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To: US Navy Vet

Don’t forget Buchanan.


14 posted on 12/11/2013 12:43:27 PM PST by Jack Hydrazine (Pubbies = national collectivists; Dems = international collectivists; me = independent conservative)
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To: Kaslin

LBJ was a venal, phony, disgusting, murdering so and so. The lowest of the low.


15 posted on 12/11/2013 12:43:33 PM PST by dainbramaged (Windage and elevation, Mrs. Langdon; windage and elevation.)
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To: Jack Hydrazine

Don’t know enough about him to despise him. Educate me.


16 posted on 12/11/2013 12:45:43 PM PST by US Navy Vet (Go Packers! Go Rockies! Go Boston Bruins! See, I'm "Diverse"!)
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To: gemoftheocean

He was a NorthEast “Progressive”. Like the Bushies and Nelson Rockefeller.


17 posted on 12/11/2013 12:47:19 PM PST by US Navy Vet (Go Packers! Go Rockies! Go Boston Bruins! See, I'm "Diverse"!)
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To: stanne
That photographer, bless him, is on a world of trouble right now

No doubt the photographer is in Valerie Jarrett's crosshairs. Sux to be him; hope his affairs are in order.

18 posted on 12/11/2013 12:48:57 PM PST by COBOL2Java (I'm a Christian, pro-life, pro-gun, Reaganite. The GOP hates me. Why should I vote for them?)
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To: oh8eleven

Maybe no GCA ‘68 either. *sigh*


19 posted on 12/11/2013 12:53:10 PM PST by Slings and Arrows (You can't have Ingsoc without an Emmanuel Goldstein.)
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To: SevenofNine
Also I understand Reagan didn't make it because dude got just wounded he need time to recover.

Explain please....make it to what?

20 posted on 12/11/2013 12:56:22 PM PST by Churchillspirit (9/11/2001 and 9/11/2012: NEVER FORGET.)
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To: US Navy Vet

He was the Prez right before the American Civil War. His lack of leadership during his time in office helped to bring about the war. There are other negative aspects about him that other FReepers can chime in with.


21 posted on 12/11/2013 12:57:14 PM PST by Jack Hydrazine (Pubbies = national collectivists; Dems = international collectivists; me = independent conservative)
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To: SevenofNine
Since Obama attended Mandella’s funeral, but was unavailable for Margaret Thatcher, could we chalk this up to racism?
22 posted on 12/11/2013 12:59:20 PM PST by blues-train (blues train)
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To: US Navy Vet

More details, shipmate.

I’ve been reading the biographies of T. Roosevelt. He ain’t no socialist though he was a populist, and not at all popular with those elitists who wanted another National Bank.

He tangled with the Vanderbilts, the Goulds, the Rockefellers, J.P.Morgan, and other Robber Barons who felt they had the sole right of choosing who was to be President.

Gee! Sounds like the GOPe today.


23 posted on 12/11/2013 1:04:53 PM PST by SatinDoll (A NATURAL BORN CITIZEN: BORN IN THE USA OF USA CITIZEN PARENTS)
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To: Kaslin
Why did one of the most politically savvy leaders ever to occupy the White House—Lyndon Baines Johnson—decide not to attend the funeral of Winston Churchill in 1965?

That's an easy one. LBJ avoided situations where someone could make an unfavorable comparison between him and someone else. Winston Churchill was an undeniably great leader. So obviously LBJ would not want to be stuck at his funeral.

24 posted on 12/11/2013 1:05:16 PM PST by wideminded
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To: US Navy Vet
Buchanan is widely considered by historians to be the worst president in U.S. history. While it is true that many historians are of the libtard vent and love activist jerks like FDR, Buchanan was in a class all by himself.

Not only was he, in all probability, the first gay president, but he managed to enrage both North and South with some of the irrational policies which removed the consistency and predictability from compromise policies put in place by his successors.

Then there was his open policy of making war on Indians and Mormons just because it felt good. Some of the Plains tribes (especially the Sioux) which hadn't been hostile and had even gotten along reasonably well with whites traveling west up to that point, became hostile due to Buchanan's aforementioned policies.

Some blame said policies on General Johnston, his secretary of war, and later a Confederate General who was seeking to divert and weaken the U.S. Army in preparation for the Civil War.

Yeah, that's possible, but he couldn't have done it without Buchanan's support.

25 posted on 12/11/2013 1:05:17 PM PST by Vigilanteman (Obama: Fake black man. Fake Messiah. Fake American. How many fakes can you fit in one Zer0?)
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To: Oliviaforever

It would not have been Air Force One unless the President were actually on board.


26 posted on 12/11/2013 1:05:48 PM PST by reg45 (Barack 0bama: Implementing class warfare by having no class.)
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To: US Navy Vet

Excellent list. I would add Jackson and Lincoln to mine.


27 posted on 12/11/2013 1:15:56 PM PST by Romulus
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To: stanne

yeah he won’t get invite next year


28 posted on 12/11/2013 1:18:11 PM PST by SevenofNine (We are Freepers, all your media bases belong to us ,resistance is futile)
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To: SatinDoll

I saw a new TR bio in the bookstore at lunch. It was written by Doris Kearns Goodwin with an eye toward TR’s populism, in conjunction with the journalist “muckrakers” that were in concert with him about the elitists. Think I’ll pass on this one, personally, but thought you might like to know.


29 posted on 12/11/2013 1:19:18 PM PST by T-Bird45 (It feels like the seventies, and it shouldn't.)
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To: gemoftheocean

Never forget that TR was a jingo and (more damnably) a committed, enthusiastic eugenicist. A proto-nazi, IMHO.


30 posted on 12/11/2013 1:20:56 PM PST by Romulus
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To: Vigilanteman
LBJ, like BO, was an a**hat who despised Churchill.

What problem did LBJ have with Winston Churchill? From what I know of their respective careers they never crossed paths except fro when Churchill addressed Congress for the second time in 1952, I believe it was.

BHO undoubtedly knows what Churchill thought of blacks, all blacks, not just American Negroes. There are two pretty explicit albeit brief indications of this in his doctor Lord Moran's very revealing book about Churchill as a patient. Churchill was PM when the Mau Mau trouble was going on and let the colonial authorities smash the uprising with really iron fisted tactics (appropriate ones IMHO).

Incidentally, whatever Churchill's family thought was an outrageous breach of doctor=patient privilege this book makes WSC a real hero. Tough, tough old man sloughing off strokes and heart problems and pushing on. Even though WSC was dogged with depression his whole life. Read the book and come away humbled at how much a battler Churchill was.

31 posted on 12/11/2013 1:32:29 PM PST by robowombat
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To: US Navy Vet

Excellent list of the not so excellent.


32 posted on 12/11/2013 1:50:44 PM PST by TalonDJ
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To: Vigilanteman

Churchill saw the relationship between roosevelt and $+@l!n up close. He was under no illusions about saint franklin.


33 posted on 12/11/2013 7:22:16 PM PST by Mmmike
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To: Kaslin
Many in the British government saw it as a slight. And in some ways it represented a minor setback in American/Anglo relations at a crucial time in the Cold War.

Here!

Take yer old bust back; too!

https://www.google.com/search?q=obama+bust+churchill&sourceid=ie7&rls=com.microsoft:en-US:IE-Address&ie=&oe=&rlz=1I7ADRA_enUS475

34 posted on 12/11/2013 9:15:42 PM PST by Elsie (Heck is where people, who don't believe in Gosh, think they are not going...)
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To: T-Bird45

Doris Kearns Goodwin is a super liberal. I’ve never read any of her books and do not intend on doing so, but thanks for the information.


35 posted on 12/12/2013 3:34:49 AM PST by SatinDoll (A NATURAL BORN CITIZEN IS BORN IN THE USA OF USA CITIZEN PARENTS)
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To: Romulus

“Never forget that TR was a jingo and (more damnably) a committed, enthusiastic eugenicist. A proto-nazi, IMHO.”

I don’t know where you got that info, but he made Republican power brokers really nervous every time he reached out politically to American blacks. Most people do no know this, but TR’s mother was a southerner, and her family had been slave owners and supporters of the Confederacy. TR was violently opposed to lynchings, and worked to get such activity halted. He did so whenever he could despite his position’s unpopularity with southern Democrats.

He was opposed to colonialism by Europeans in the Western Hemisphere. At the end of the Spanish-American War he saw to it that Cuba, the Philipines, and other former Spanish colonies had written constitutions that allowed them to split from U.S. protection. European governments but particularly European banking interests hated TR.

I suspect that most of the disinformation available has been written by liberals paid by those aforementioned European bankers. Up until Woodrow Wilson, it was Republican elitists who were trying to reestablish a National Bank, like the one Pres. Andrew Jackson managed to abolish early in the 19th century. Midwestern Republicans in Congress did a super job of preventing that reestablishment, and eventually men like Gould and Morgan turned to the Democrats.

The book, “The Creature from Jekyll Island” is a good information read on the subject.


36 posted on 12/12/2013 4:07:46 AM PST by SatinDoll (A NATURAL BORN CITIZEN IS BORN IN THE USA OF USA CITIZEN PARENTS)
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To: SatinDoll
Judge Napolitano isn't TR's biggest fan.


37 posted on 12/12/2013 4:38:57 AM PST by Bratch
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To: Bratch

Thank you for the information.

The biographies I’ve read of TR were penned by Edmund Morris. He wrote three on TR: The Rise of Theodore Roosevelt; Theodore Rex; and, Colonel Roosevelt.

Morris also wrote - Dutch: A Memoir Of Ronald Reagan.

You should take note here that there exists a huge difference between biographies (such as by Morris) and political analysis (in this case by Judge Napolitano). One is a detailed description of a life in its fullness, while the other synthesizes an aspect, freezes it and examines it in hindsight.


38 posted on 12/12/2013 5:09:43 AM PST by SatinDoll (A NATURAL BORN CITIZEN IS BORN IN THE USA OF USA CITIZEN PARENTS)
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To: Jack Hydrazine
Don’t forget Buchanan.

Well, he sure wasn't a Millard Fillmore!

39 posted on 12/12/2013 11:26:19 AM PST by Kenny Bunk (OK, Obama be bad. Now where's OUR Program, Plan, and Leader?)
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To: gemoftheocean
.....why Teddy R? Most republicans like him.

A Big Government Man. Also, changed us from kind of a down-home Republic into a big international empire. A Progressive from the word go.

Not a team player ... that Bull Moose Crap gave us Wilson and WWI ... just as moose-crap Perot gave us Ole BJ Clinton. OTOH, TR was a for real .... if very loud ...American. Grandpa liked him. Grandma didn't, but the ladies hadn't the vote yet!

40 posted on 12/12/2013 11:32:42 AM PST by Kenny Bunk (OK, Obama be bad. Now where's OUR Program, Plan, and Leader?)
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To: Romulus
TR was a jingo and (more damnably) a committed, enthusiastic eugenicist. A proto-nazi, IMHO.

And with that pince-nez, he looks damn weird on Mt. Rushmore.

41 posted on 12/12/2013 11:35:13 AM PST by Kenny Bunk (OK, Obama be bad. Now where's OUR Program, Plan, and Leader?)
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To: SatinDoll
....Doris Kearns Goodwin is a super liberal....

And a bold plagiarist. 5-20 pages at a time.

42 posted on 12/12/2013 11:37:14 AM PST by Kenny Bunk (OK, Obama be bad. Now where's OUR Program, Plan, and Leader?)
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To: Kaslin
[Art.]
As with many things about LBJ, the truth is elusive.

Oh, come on, son, it ain't hard.

Just assume Lint'n was acting like the lying, low-down, snaky-ass POS he always was, and you'll catch on pretty quick.

"Elusive", my ass.

43 posted on 12/12/2013 9:05:32 PM PST by lentulusgracchus
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To: Kenny Bunk
Yeah, why are we still seeing her all the time on PBS? Other people snagged at the same time for the same thing have literally disappeared.

I blech at the sight of her red hair and goofy, FDR- and JFK-worshipping grin.

44 posted on 12/12/2013 9:07:27 PM PST by lentulusgracchus
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To: CovenBuster

Ping


45 posted on 12/12/2013 10:48:55 PM PST by CovenBuster (Bustin' up liberal covens from coast to coast)
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To: lentulusgracchus
.....why are we still seeing her all the time on PBS?

She is just one of those go-to Lefties that keep PBS and NPR going.

BTW, NPR used to be at least of some use as a source of classical music and good jazz. Now however, they are seeking to break the deal up into separate outlets, one dedicated to music broadcasting; the other to constant commie bullshevik, global warming, paeans to Obama and other homosexuals, and the tribulations of those seeking gay marriage.

The trick is the music stations cannot broadcast clearly and cleanly in their listening areas! So it's all commie ... all the time.

BTW, Kearns is actually an idiot. Her book on the Lincoln Administration would have gotten you thrown out of my school for cheating. She ripped off everyone from Carl Sandberg to Gore Vidal ... and the bitch got caught.

But she is still unrepentant, very politically correct, and therefore still an eyesore on your .

46 posted on 12/14/2013 8:38:14 AM PST by Kenny Bunk (OK, Obama be bad. Now where's OUR Program, Plan, and Leader?)
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To: US Navy Vet
Don’t know enough about him to despise him.

Not sure if you meant this to be funny but it is. :)

47 posted on 12/14/2013 8:50:00 AM PST by Lizavetta
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To: US Navy Vet

You missed Jimmy Carter. I would maintain he enabled much of our current Islamic troubles by not backing the Shah.


48 posted on 12/14/2013 10:08:28 AM PST by FreedomPoster (Islam delenda est)
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