The White House diary of George W. Bush, which the 43rd president faithfully maintained throughout his two terms in office, has created a media firestorm and stirred both controversy and intrigue since it was published by the New York Times on its Web site early yesterday morning. The diary has already received more than 35 million hits.
Critics of the former president are pointing to the diary as evidence that Mr. Bush was a detached and disinterested commander-in-chief who was out of his depth as president. “At one of the most important moments of his presidency, all the guy was thinking about was food,” said longtime democratic strategist Bob Shrum, in reference to what has quickly become the most widely discussed section of the diary: a fourteen-page entry written on the eve of the Iraq War in which the president vents about the quality of the White House food, specifically the poor selection of comfort snacks, his dissatisfaction with the chimichangas and his ongoing frustration with the size of the hamburgers.
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