In what some dubbed a Freudian slip, former President George Bush accidentally said “Iraq” instead of “Ukraine” in a speech condemning Russian President Vladimir Putin for invading Ukraine. In the speech, he says “The result is an absence of checks and balances in Russia, and the decision of one man to launch a wholly unjustified and brutal invasion of Iraq— I mean, of Ukraine.” He laughed to try to cover it, later adding “Iraq too. Anyway, I’m 75.” Although he laughed, and some laughed with him, others did not find it so funny.
Former President George W. Bush: “The decision of one man to launch a wholly unjustified and brutal invasion of Iraq. I mean of Ukraine.” pic.twitter.com/UMwNMwMnmX
— Sahil Kapur (@sahilkapur) May 19, 2022
For context, Bush directed the invasion of Iraq in 2003, a decision that continues to be widely criticized for being inhumane and illegal. On Twitter, the clip circulated quickly, with many on both sides of the political spectrum noting their frustration or disapproval. “I think watching him say that with no shame broke something. This is simultaneously the funniest and least funny thing I’ve ever seen,” one person noted. “I’m not laughing & I am guessing nor are the families of the 1000s of American troops & the 100s of 1000s of Iraqis who died in that war,” political commentator Mehdi Hasan said.
All those people in the room with Bush think the Iraq war was funny
When people show you who they are, believe them
— Jack Posobiec 🇺🇸 (@JackPosobiec) May 19, 2022
Last night's comments from George W. Bush should remind Republicans in Texas why they need to vote against George P. Bush in the runoff for state Attorney General.
No more of this family in our politics.
— Tim Young (@TimRunsHisMouth) May 19, 2022
The comments definitely struck a nerve, as several people responded to the video. Since 2003, both conservatives and democrats largely criticize the invasion and the war it later led to. So, it made sense that people found it odd that Bush would comment on the invasion considering many people compare the Ukraine invasion to the one in Iraq. “All gaffes aside, George W Bush was wrong to invade Iraq. And Putin was wrong to invade Ukraine,” Joe Walsh wrote.
George W. Bush just admitted to being a war criminal of the likes of Vladimir Putin, then laughed.
— Nina Turner (@ninaturner) May 19, 2022
“If you were George W. Bush, you think you’d just steer clear of giving any speech about one man launching a wholly unjustified and brutal invasion,” congressman Justin Amash wrote, receiving over 4,000 likes.