‘Rolling Thunder’ cozies up to Bush

Rolling Thunder greets Bush (AP)President Bush likes a serene White House most Sundays. Every now and then, though, he is ready for rumble.

Leaders of Rolling Thunder, the motorcycling group that raises awareness about missing veterans, roared right up the mansion's driveway this Sunday. Bush, just back from a weekend at Camp David, stood alone outside the South Portico to meet them.

No Memorial Day weekend in the capital is complete without the ritualistic rumble of Rolling Thunder. For 20 years now, the nonprofit group has led a "Ride for Freedom" along the National Mall, a full-throttle demonstration in support of soldiers held captive or missing in action.

"How you doing, Artie? Welcome back," the president told Artie Muller, the founder and executive director of the nonprofit group.

Muller led 13 visitors who came calling on eight motorcycles. The guests included Interior Secretary Dirk Kempthorne, Transportation Secretary Mary Peters and White House chief of staff Josh Bolten, whose Harley-Davidson was decked out with patriotic bunting.

Bush gave out handshakes and hugs, took at look at the gleaming bikes and then invited his visitors into the Oval Office.

Rolling Thunder seeks a full accounting of veterans who are prisoners of war or are missing in action. It also advocates for fair treatment of veterans returning from the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan and has been critical of Bush's Veteran Affairs Department on that front.

Afterward, Muller said he presented a series of concerns to Bush.

Among them were the way the Defense Department classifies missing and captured troops and the plight of soldiers who have been discharged from military hospitals and are having trouble supporting their families.

"He's always been very honest with us and supportive," Muller said. "He feels that these issues need to be addressed."

Bush held a similar greeting at the White House in 2004 for Rolling Thunder. The group endorsed him in both his presidential bids.

Overall, tens of thousands of motorcyclists took part in Sunday's rally; major streets were closed for the event. The riders began at the Pentagon, crossed the Memorial Bridge and gathered at the somber wall of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial.

On Monday, Bush planned to place a wreath at the Tomb of the Unknowns at Arlington National Cemetery in honor of Memorial Day.


On The Net:

Rolling Thunder: http://www.rollingthunder1.com

White House: http://www.whitehouse.gov


  1. Carl Nemo

    “He’s always been very honest with us and supportive,” Muller said. “He feels that these issues need to be addressed.”

    Bush is always patronizing whomever, with promises to do something and then nothing gets done. There’s no forward motion on the field, only lost yards with Bushco at play except when it comes to waging war for the acquisition of oil and even that doesn’t seem to be a “slam-dunk” at this point in time.

    Based on what the Dems pulled off concerning the Iraqi funding debacle, this club could have made a more powerful statement by simply not wheeling up to the Whitehouse for the annual feelgood handshakes and the “Barny” hugs for 2007. Sometimes abstinance from a “duty ritual” sends a more powerful message than participation. I believe in 2005 they had General Richard Myers, then Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff riding a “putt” with the club on Memorial Day.

    Things weren’t going well in Iraq in 2005 regardless of Myers feelgood affirmations to the contrary, so for public relations purposes I guess the order of the day was for the CJCS to get crackin’ and play biker for a day. I’ve supplied a link concerning Myers interview with PBS host Jim Lehrer. Also another link to let folks know what a Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff is supposed to be doing from the Council of Foreign Relations perspective; i.e., a PSYOP warrior; i.e., a military propagandist to hopefully steer the unwashed masses with their pontifications and to act as a cheer leader for the civilian regime’s partyline. Some additional links providing informaiton on Bilderberger, Trilaterals, the CFR of which 7 of the former CJCS’s were members. The information is not up to date, so quite possibly Meyers, and Pace are CFR members too.

    What’s my point? To demontrate how the government will use events for propaganda purposes and even plug-in the CJCS as frosting on the cake if necessary. Of course the CJCS mission is to be engaged in PSYOP activity to sway public opinion for the benefit of an administration. Even this event; i.e., the “Rolling Thunder” Memorial Day ride can be exploited for the benefit of the Bushistas.

    Organizers need to do some soul-searching before they hold an event, on a business as usual, annual basis. This war is no longer “usual business”, but extraordinary in the history of warfare for this nation. It’s an offensive war of aggression for the purpose of securing another nation’s oil resources, nothing more, nothing less. Hitler’s war machine was constantly searching for sources of oil to seize. They even had crack “Oil Commandos”. So I guess the PNAC/NWO crowd decided to emulate the best players at this game 60 plus years ago; i.e., Hitler’s war machine.

    Carl Nemo **==


  2. www.nazilieskill.us

    Since ancient Egypt I suppose there have been triumphalist military organizations like Rolling Thunder is today. (The NRA and the American Nazi Party aren’t much different.) When veterans lose a war, they always blame intellectuals and book readers for their plight, even though there is plenty of evidence for the fact they have usually been betrayed by an anti-intellectual royal class, like the Republicans. Republicans put pressure on LBJ for a Vietnam war profiteering bonanza. and as long as the war went on they could profit accordingly. The same is going on now, but only a person blinded by romantic triumphalist fantasies could believe that it has anything to do with national defense. Hitler used triumphalist notions like a piano player, and Bush is doing the same with a lot of help from a corrupt media. Bush and his party are total filth. They are traitors. It is as simple as that. Just because you ride a motorcycle and have patriotic notions doesn’t mean you are on the right side. “Patriots” breed more traitors than an outhouse breeds flies.

    John Hanks, Laramie, Wyoming

  3. Access Of Evil

    Rolling Thunder needs to bite my 100%, Service Connected, Disabled Veteran ass.

  4. Calliet

    I remember seeing a bumper sticker from an organized motorcycle rider group. Basically, it said that they feared their government. Since this was a Clinton-era bumper sticker, I guess they basically just didn’t like a Dem president.

    There is plenty to fear about Bush, but those bikers are of the ilk that believes that the only way you can lose your freedom is thru having a Democratic president or not supporting a Republican president’s war.


  5. Carl Nemo

    Some inflammatory comments have been posted on CHB concerning “Rolling Thunder”‘s participation in the Memorial Day activities and there’s not been a single protest to the contrary? Do these folks own a computer, are they hooked to the internet…what gives?! I’m not looking for confrontation, but I am fascinated by the lack of response. Ah…I do realize the thrumb of the bike engines between their loins is paramount, juxtaposed against ideals, which are second to last!

    Carl Nemo **==