Monday, June 09, 2008

Bush Farewell Tour. Tickets Available

Hey Mr. president. Now that you've wrecked this country, what are you going to do?

I'm going to Euro-Disney!

George W. Bush, weakened by the Iraq war and a sour US economy, launched a farewell trip to Europe vowing to "improve the solidifatory factor" of relations and plead for more help with Afghanistan. Mostly pleading. Some crying and feet stomping too. "We are very excited the president is coming," said one French official. "We hope he brings with him the freedom fries and freedom toast."

"I'm looking forward to meeting with our friends and allies." the president said. "And I plan to stay until I find some."

Bush told reporters, "we've got strong relations in Europe. You can tell by how they've rallied to our side in Iraq and Afghanistan."

With roughly seven months before his successor gets the keys to the White House, Bush plans to stay out of the country as much as possible looking for a country that does not have an extradition treaty with the U.S.

Bush also aimed to ensure that the European Union fully implements international sanctions on Iran over its suspect nuclear program, and push EU members to further tighten the financial screw on Tehran, aides said. "That is if we can get anyone to meet with us," an aide added.

Bush said he would deliver the message that "We've got to keep our economies flexible; both the US economy and European economies need to be flexible in order to deal with today's challenges. But what would be even better is if the European economies could bail us out. I've pretty much driven the US economy into the ground and we've got about as much flexibility as a two by four has dancing shoes."

It was not clear what sort of welcome the US leader would get from European counterparts, most of whom had already informed the White House they would be out of town that week, or that was the day they planned to sort their sock drawers.

"I don't think you're going to see people pay much attention to us," US National Security Adviser Stephen Hadley told reporters last week. "In fact, a lot of the folks have changed their phone numbers and we're having trouble getting a hold of them."

Bush, who has explicitly refused to rule out the use of force against Iran, met this week with Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert, and media reports said the Israeli leader pushed Washington to plan for a possible strike. "Our official position is let's you and him fight," said one highly placed Israeli official. "We think Bush is stupid enough to go for it."

Bush also aimed to annoy his hosts by complicating the Middle East peace process, making difficult Western relations with Russia more difficult, undercutting Georgia in a feud with Moscow, damaging democracy in Lebanon, and enraging Serbia.

When asked what preparations were underway for the president's visit, one German official said, "We're hoping we'll get lucky and he'll get lost before he gets here."

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