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Documentary Commentary: Bush’s War

The documentary analyses how meticulous planning and luck helped the United States wage war against some of the countries and insurgent nations in the Middle East. The panning was enhanced by the president’s Iraq war policy and the destruction of those who were opposed to peacekeeping efforts in the Middle Eastern countries. Notably, the government’s “Clear, hold, build” strategy is explained as a success, showing the impact of the planning and, to an extent, luck in ensuring that appropriate policies are adopted. These policies are essential in the United States and its efforts to defeat radical extremist nations.

However, the documentary is insufficient in providing evidence that helps back the analysis and claims regarding the efforts of the Bush regime to conquer Iraq. Notably, the majority of the information and data relied upon is from the president’s past public speeches. Moreover, there are also no fresh interviews conducted with the important people who made some of the decisions in engaging in the war with Iraq. Thus, it can be concluded that a considerable section of the documentary is based on already available information, making it difficult to adopt and use it on a comprehensive platform. The documentary could have done better by providing new information and interviews that could be effective and efficient in improvement of the public view of the war. The vital information in the Video comes from deputies, journalists and other secondary players. There was a need for the authors to get data from actual government personnel, such as former adviser Condoleezza Rice who had a first-hand view of the war and the impacts which developed from some of these areas and instances of unrest. This would have provided a boost to the documentary and increased its general efficacy and public awareness levels.

The Video failed to emphasize some of the gains made in the war. There was a need to showcase the benefits of engaging in the war and how the United States stood to benefit. The information should have been emphasized as a way of making sure that the people understood and appreciated the war and how it had helped increase peace efforts in the country. President George Bush is quoted in the Video, “it is in the vital interests of the United States that we succeed” (Frontline, 2019). There should have been more enhanced emphasis on the point and provided information on how the country succeeded and the gains that would be seen in years to come.

The documentary contributes to enhanced discursive elements in the role of the United States in the Middle Eastern War. The political discourse has led to divided groups with increased calls for the United States to withdraw troops in the Middle East. More specifically, the claims have been meted on the number of casualties seen in the region, making it difficult for the nation to have affirmed control of its resources and the soldiers. The documentary could have shed more light on this factor by providing an enhanced comparison of the gains and losses in the war. It would also impact policies developed by subsequent regimes with regards to decisions on whether the United States should continue its operations in Iraq and other Middle Eastern nations such as Afghanistan.


Frontline. (2019, April 3). Bush’s war [Video]. FRONTLINE.


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