I liked it better when he was pretending to read the "Salt" book
Anti-Imperialists Beware - Bush Is Reading Again
WASHINGTON - According to the White House, U.S. President George W. Bush has taken two books with him to Texas for his holiday reading, which he will presumably indulge between his favourite ranch pursuits -- clearing brush and biking.
The second book on Bush's reading list, "Imperial Grunts: The American Military on the Ground" by Robert Kaplan is far more worrisome in its implications, at least for the remaining three years of his presidency.
Kaplan, who began his career as a self-described "travel writer" in the 1980s, has evolved into a political thinker whose outlook is explicitly imperialist -- a term that he has used and re-used in recent years with unabashed approval -- and, in the words of one conservative reviewer and retired Army colonel, Andrew Bacevich, "reactionary".
Instead of the Great Plains and western reaches of the 19th century U.S., however, today's "Injun Country", as Kaplan calls it, consists of the entire Islamic world, from the southern Philippines to Mauritania, as well as other un-governed or misgoverned areas in desperate need of order and civilisation.
And who best to civilise these places and their inhabitants than the U.S. military, specifically the "imperial grunts" with whom Kaplan embedded himself -- no doubt with the enthusiastic support of the Pentagon and probably Rumsfeld himself -- for weeks at a time in various parts of the world on three continents, and who, not incidentally, bear a striking resemblance to Bush's own self-image?
In one telling piece of analysis, he describes the presumed thoughts of a Filipino in Zamboanga, presumably a descendant of Moro who resisted, at the cost of tens of thousands of their lives, U.S. imperialism 100 years ago: "His smiling, naïve eyes cried out for what we in the West call colonialism."
Oh, yes, just what we needed; a return to the Good Ol' Days of colonialism. THAT'LL get them to Stop Hating Us.