Washington, Nov 13 : US President George Bush has said that he regretted certain utterances during his eight years of Presidency. After vacating the White House on January 20, he plans to pen a book jotting down his experiences at the Oval Office.
"I regret saying some things I shouldn't have said", Bush said while recalling how his wife Laura Bush had once warned him that "as President of the United States, be careful what you say".
He specially mentioned two remarks - "Bring 'em on" and "dead or alive", which, he said, he would like now to take back. He made the first remark when talking about the threat posed by insurgents in a post-Saddam Iraq, and the second was made in the wake of the 2001 terror attacks, characterising his appetite for capturing Osama bin Laden, the head of al-Qa'ida. "It would only cement his reputation in the rest of the world as a cowboy gunslinger, with a disdain for democracy," said an article in The Independent.
He also regretted the "Mission Accomplished" banner that was strung up behind him when he flew onto the deck of a US aircraft carrier in May 2003 after the toppling of Saddam Hussein.
Bush also pointed out high points of his presidency that he looked back to with special pride, including the widely praised programmes his administration has spearheaded on the fight against HIV/Aids in Africa, where he said:. "I am proud to be the commander-in-chief of people who are so selfless and so courageous that they would volunteer to serve our country in a time of war," he said. "I'm proud when I see people feed the hungry. I'm proud when I'm in Africa and see volunteers helping those citizens dying of HIV/Aids."
He recalled his meeting with his predecessor Bill Clinton before taking over the White House. "I remember the conversation I had with my predecessor Bill Clinton in 2000. As a matter of fact, I called him yesterday and said, 'Bill, I'm getting ready to meet with the new president and I remember how gracious you were to me. I hope I can be as gracious to President-elect Obama as you were to me."
And, about his meeting with President-elect Barack Obama, he said: "It was interesting to watch him go upstairs. He wanted to see where his little girls were going to sleep. Clearly, this guy is going to bring a sense of family to the White House, and I hope Laura and I did the same thing. He is a good dad and I think that's going to be an important part of his presidency."
Endorsing Obama for his tenure at the Presidency, Bush said: "The election of Barack Obama is a historic moment for our country. There are a lot of people in America who did not believe they would ever see this day. It is good for our country that people have hope in the system and feel vested in the future and President-elect Obama has a great opportunity. I really do wish him all the best."