South Sudan is World’s Newest Country and it thanks….George W. Bush

South Sudan — Free at Last!

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What a triumph for former president George W. Bush!

New York Times:

“Christian groups had been championing the southern Sudanese since the 19th century. And their efforts paid off in 2000 when George W. Bush was elected president of the United States. He elevated Sudan to the top of his foreign policy agenda, and in 2005, the American government pushed the southern rebels and the central government – both war weary and locked in a military stalemate – to sign a comprehensive peace agreement that guaranteed the southerners the right to secede.

On Saturday, one man held up a sign that said “Thank You George Bush.”

The American-backed treaty set the stage for a referendum this January in which southerners voted by 98.8 percent for independence.

At 1:20 p.m. on Saturday, the southerners officially proclaimed their freedom…

…South Sudan’s president, Salva Kiir, wearing his signature black cowboy hat given to him by Mr. Bush, signed the interim Constitution.”

About that hat:

President Kiir first visited White House in July 2006 and received the black cowboy hat as a gift from President Bush. Kiir has worn the hat constantly since then….

2006 -- before he got the hat

In 2007 when he visited President Bush again…..

Back in 2007 with that hat

Even inside the United Nations when he visited U.N. Chief Ban Ki Moon…

he kept his hat on

Many Middle East and African news agencies have commented on the hat ….

Kiir wore the hat when he was inaugurated….

And today on South Sudan’s historic day….there’s that hat.

“Wild celebrations erupted in the streets of Juba, the capital city of the world’s newest country. According to the BBC and the New York Times, the Republic of South Sudan has become the 193rd member of the United Nations after separation from Sudan was officially recognized yesterday. South Sudanese independence is the culmination of years of negotiations that followed a 2005 peace deal that ended a decades-long civil war between the Muslim north and the Christian and animist south that claimed more than a million lives.

The Sudanese government in Khartoum became the first to officially recognize South Sudan as an independent nation. Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir, as well as United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon were among the many international leaders and dignitaries on hand in Juba to celebrate this momentous event.”

“A countdown clock in central Juba ticked off the moments to independence, with jubilant celebrations beginning just after midnight as the new national anthem played on television. South Sudanese flags waved in the air, the beat of pounding drums resonated and ecstatic people chanted the name of their President, Salva Kiir Mayardit. “FREEDOM!” was a frequently heard cry throughout the night.”

Gateway Pundit notes: President George Bush liberated 50 million people during his presidency, a legacy which history will hopefully remember. President Kiir and South Sudan remember.

Here is a very sweet video of President Kiir and a Sudanese delegation when they came to the White House to thank George Bush before he left office. Kiir was wearing “the hat.”

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