” In his Inaugural Address he pledged in”a moment rich with promise” to use American strength as “a forcefor good. ” Coming from a family with a tradition of public service, GeorgeHerbert Walker Bush felt the responsibility to make his contribution both intime of war and in peace. Born in Milton, Massachusetts, on June 12, 1924, hebecame a student leader at Phillips Academy in Andover. On his 18th birthday heenlisted in the armed forces.
The youngest pilot in the Navy when he receivedhis wings, he flew 58 combat missions during World War II. On one mission overthe Pacific as a torpedo bomber pilot he was shot down by Japanese antiaircraftfire and was rescued from the water by a U. S. submarine. He was awarded theDistinguished Flying Cross for bravery in action. Bush next turned his energiestoward completing his education and raising a family.
In January 1945 he marriedBarbara Pierce. They had six children–George, Robin (who died as a child), John(known as Jeb), Neil, Marvin, and Dorothy. At Yale University he excelled bothin sports and in his studies; he was captain of the baseball team and a memberof Phi Beta Kappa. After graduation Bush embarked on a career in the oilindustry of West Texas. Like his father, Prescott Bush, who was elected aSenator from Connecticut in 1952, George became interested in public service andpolitics.
He served two terms as a Representative to Congress from Texas. Twicehe ran unsuccessfully for the Senate. Then he was appointed to a series ofhigh-level positions: Ambassador to the United Nations, Chairman of theRepublican National Committee, Chief of the U. S.
Liaison Office in the People’sRepublic of China, and Director of the Central Intelligence Agency. In 1980 Bushcampaigned for the Republican nomination for President. He lost, but was chosenas a running mate by Ronald Reagan. As Vice President, Bush had responsibilityin several domestic areas, including Federal deregulation and anti-drugprograms, and visited scores of foreign countries.
In 1988 Bush won theRepublican nomination for President and, with Senator Dan Quayle of Indiana ashis running mate, he defeated Massachusetts Governor Michael Dukakis in thegeneral election. Bush faced a dramatically changing world, as the Cold Warended after 40 bitter years, the Communist empire broke up, and the Berlin Wallfell. The Soviet Union ceased to exist; and reformist President Mikhail Gorbachev, whom Bush had supported, resigned. While Bush hailed the march ofdemocracy, he insisted on restraint in U. S.
policy toward the group of newnations. In other areas of foreign policy, President Bush sent American troopsinto Panama to overthrow the corrupt regime of General Manuel Noriega, who wasthreatening the security of the canal and the Americans living there. Noriegawas brought to the United States for trial as a drug trafficker. Bush’s greatesttest came when Iraqi President Saddam Hussein invaded Kuwait, then threatened tomove into Saudi Arabia. Vowing to free Kuwait, Bush rallied the United Nations,the U.
S. people, and Congress and sent 425,000 American troops. They werejoined by 118,000 troops from allied nations. After weeks of air and missilebombardment, the 100-hour land battle dubbed Desert Storm routed Iraq’smillion-man army. Despite unprecedented popularity from this military anddiplomatic triumph, Bush was unable to withstand discontent at home from afaltering economy, rising violence in inner cities, and continued high deficitspending. In 1992 he lost his bid for reelection to Democrat William Clinton.Politics