How George H.W. Bush helped end the Cold War peacefully

Geraldine Edwards
December 7, 2018

A decade later, the presidency of Bush's son, George W Bush, would be jolted by al Qaeda's deadly hijacking attacks on the United States on September 11, 2001.

Bush suffered the complications of vascular Parkinsonism for years before he passed away.

President, Adam Malik of Indonesia, to suspend the proceeding till the the next day as the time was past midnight.

Bush, the 41st president of the United States, lived longer than any of his predecessors. The president's casket will lie in state from Monday night until Wednesday morning in the centre of the U.S. Capitol rotunda.

President Donald Trump, who was in Argentina attending a G20 summit of world leaders, hailed Bush's "sound judgment, common sense, and unflappable leadership".

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One of Bush's last acts as president was pardoning former Defense Secretary Caspar Weinberger and others for their role in the Iran-Contra scandal, an offshoot of those hostage crises. At the White House, the American flag flew at half-staff early Saturday.

One saw him shot down by Japanese anti-aircraft fire over the Pacific, leaving him to be rescued by a U.S. submarine.

But progress on his watch was felt around the world, the fall of the Berlin Wall and the end of communism in Eastern Europe perhaps most notably, the liberation of Kuwait after the Iraqi invasion. After graduation Bush embarked on a career in the oil industry of West Texas.

During his four years in office, Bush presided over the end of the Cold War: He was president during the reunification of East and West Germany, the dissolution of the Warsaw Pact alliance and the withdrawal of Soviet forces from Afghanistan in February 1989, shortly after he took office on January 20, 1989.

He served in the US House of Representatives, as Washington's envoy to China and as chief of the Central Intelligence Agency before being elected Ronald Reagan's vice president.

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Bush's "calmness, leadership and close personal relationships with (German chancellor) Helmut Kohl and (Soviet Russian leader) Mikhail Gorbachev were decisive in restoring peace and freedom back to so many people across our continent", the former Luxembourg prime minister added.

He declared a "new world order" in 1990 and drove Iraq from Kuwait in a matter of weeks with a lightning air and ground assault - and the backing of a coalition of 32 nations. In 1992 he lost his bid for reelection to Democrat William Clinton.

Obama also said the late president's life "is a testament to the notion that public service is a noble, joyous calling".

George Bush once said that he knew that when he died, he would see his daughter Robin again.

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