Obama: I Think of Fallen Soldiers Every Day
"It was a sobering reminder of the extraordinary sacrifices that our young men and women in uniform are engaging in every single day, not only our troops but their families as well," Mr. Obama said at the White House. "The burden that both our troops and their families bear in any wartime situation is going to bear on how I see these conflicts, and it is something that I think about each and every day."
President Bush, Mr. Obama's predecessor, often met with the families of fallen soldiers privately, but he never visited Dover. In an email to CBS News White House correspondent Mark Knoller, a former senior official in the Bush Administration wrote that such a trip was never considered because the arrivals of the fallen were then closed to the press. (Mr. Obama changed the rules so that families could decide if the caskets were seen publicly.)
Said the official: "Bush did say when it came to those asking why he didn't go to a military funeral that a) he didn't want the event/moment to be about him, and if he went, it would be, b) how do you choose which one to go to - and risk offending any other soldier's mom and dad for not going to his and c) he went often to Walter Reed and Bethesda as well as meeting with hundreds of families of the fallen - but [nearly] always in private."
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