Sometimes a picture is worth a thousand words. And when you have two pictures you can compare, the meaning multiples exponentially. First, from the White House’s own Flickr site, here’s Obama greeting the troops:
Let me reiterate that this is the image the White House itself chose to represent the relationship between the Commander in Chief and his military. He looks like he’s carefully approaching animals at the petting zoo. While they probably won’t bite him, they might spit. The “animals” look simply bored. They’re not even going to bother to spit.
Contrast that with the way President Bush happily dove into the crowds of troops, and they enthusiastically reached out to greet him:
Photos, of course, capture exquisitely small moments in time. These pictures, however, jive perfectly with the video that made the rounds last year of Marines greeting both presidents:
I wonder if the difference in approach has something to do with the fact that our current president castigated these troops as stone cold killers:
It’s entirely possible that the troops resented that characterization.
UPDATE: Steve Schippert caught the big lie in Obama’s speech to the troops (hint: it has to do with chronology).