CALGARY (Alberta) - FORMER President George W. Bush said he won't criticize President Barack Obama because his successor 'deserves my silence,' and said he plans to write a book about the toughest decisions he made in office.
Mr Bush declined to critique the Obama administration on Tuesday in his first speech since leaving office. Former Vice President Dick Cheney said this week that Obama's overturning of Bush administration terrorism-fighting initiatives are making Americans less safe.
'I'm not going to spend my time criticizing him,' Mr Bush said. 'There are plenty of critics in the arena. He deserves my silence.'
Mr Bush said he wants Obama to succeed and said it's important that he has support. Fiery conservative talk-show host Rush Limbaugh has said he hoped Obama would fail, in remarks that were denounced by critics who said Limbaugh was rooting for the US to fail.
'I love my country a lot more than I love politics,' Mr Bush said. 'I think it is essential that he be helped in office.' Mr Bush said that he doesn't know what he will do in the long term but that he will write a book that will ask people to consider what they would do if they had to protect the United State as president.
He said it will be fun to write and that 'it's going to be (about) the 12 toughest decisions I had to make.' 'I'm going to put people in my place, so when the history of this administration is written at least there's an authoritarian voice saying exactly what happened,' Mr Bush said.
'I want people to understand what it was like to sit in the Oval Office and have them come in and say we have captured Khalid Sheik Mohammed, the mastermind of the Sept. 11 attacks, the alleged killer of a guy named Danny Pearl because he was simply Jewish, and we think we have information on further attacks on the United States.'
Mr Bush didn't specify what the 12 hardest decisions were but said Iraq is better off without Saddam Hussein in power. -- AP
[Bush has my respect for saying, "Obama deserves my silence", and that he loves his country more than he loves politics. He's a bigger man than Mahathir! Or at least he knows how to bow out gracefully. Interesting choice of words, to be an "authoritarian voice" on what happened during his administration. I think he meant authoritative, but he could have also meant authoritarian.]