1. Follow-up

    Bush Explains Reaction to 9/11 Attacks

    In this Sept. 11, 2001 file photo, President Bush's  Chief of Staff Andy Card whispers into the ear of the President to give him word of the plane crashes into the World Trade Center, during a visit to the Emma E. Booker Elementary School in Sarasota, Fla. President Bush said he didn't care how Osama bin Laden was brought to justice. Just get him. That was back in 2001, when Bush used bravado to lead the nation past the shock of the attacks on the World Trade Center, Pentagon and Pennsylvania.

    Doug Mills / AP Photo

    He might have overshot the mark. In an interview with National Geographic Television, former president George W. Bush explains his much-criticized blank reaction to the news of the September 11 terrorist attacks as his attempt at projecting calm. Describing getting the news while visiting a Florida classroom, he says: "My first reaction was anger. Who the hell would do that to America? Then I immediately focused on the children, and the contrast between the attack and the innocence of children." Then he realized a lot of people would be watching his reaction. "So I made the decision not to jump up immediately and leave the classroom. I didn't want to rattle the kids. I wanted to project a sense of calm."

    Read it at Reuters