George Bush, explaining to ABC's Martha Raddatz his upbeat "stay the course" style rhetoric in 2006 even when Iraq was in a downward spiral --
... the president insisted he did it to keep up troop morale.
"That's as much to try and bolster the spirits of the people in the field as well -- you can't have the commander in chief say to a bunch of kids who are sacrificing that either it's not worth it or you're losing. What does that do for morale?" Bush said.
So his job was to ignore what everyone (including the soldiers) could see, and tell them something different. These would be the same soldiers of whom Bush asserted during the course of a phony "outrage" by Senator John Kerry --
The Senator's suggestion that the men and women of our military are somehow uneducated is insulting and it is shameful. (Applause.) The members of the United States military are plenty smart, and they are plenty brave, and the Senator from Massachusetts owes them an apology. (Applause.)
Yet he was assuming that the soldiers would be gullible enough to have their morale maintained by statements that Bush now claims he didn't believe.