When Presidents Attack

President Clinton's speech last week about the bombing raids he had ordered on Serbia followed in a long tradition of such pronouncements from the Oval Office. Apart from the cut of their suits, not all that much has changed over the decades: the desks are clearer, the future just as cloudy.

PRESIDENT Roosevelt 1941

CALLED US righteous

CALLED THEM dastardly (Japanese)

RESONANT PHRASE a date which will live in infamy

DESK ACCESSORIES donkey ornaments

[PRESIDENT] Kennedy 1962

[CALLED US] peaceful and powerful

[CALLED THEM] reckless and provocative (Cubans)

[RESONANT PHRASE] The cost of freedom is always high--but Americans have always paid...

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