A monster hurricane is pounding New Orleans
. Americans are mourning US combat deaths in a post 9/11 war. And a President is under siege.
Sixteen years ago was a grim period when insurgents turned the Iraq war
against the US and Hurricane Katrina left people dying in the streets of the Big Easy, becoming a metaphor for the US presidency in free fall. President George W. Bush never regained his authority or political clout after being a bystander to those twin disasters in ’05 — a now infamous photo of him gazing out the window of Air Force One at Gulf Coast storm devastation appeared to symbolize his administration’s detachment from the crisis.
“Is this President ____’s Katrina?” Beltway pundits now quip during every political crisis.
Successful presidents bounce back after political cataclysms. Both Bill Clinton and Barack Obama overcame crises and won second terms. Jimmy Carter and Donald Trump became defined by their faults and fell short. (Bush was…
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