Layoff of raw footage for The 90's election specials. President George H.W. Bush visits a Polish National Alliance fundraiser in Chicago, IL, giving a speech on Poland's involvement in the fall of communism in Eastern Europe.
00:00Copy video clip URL This tape begins with a black screen.
00:15Copy video clip URL A shot of two young girls dressed in traditional Polish dancing outfits. The two children talk about having performed for George Bush before the 1988 Presidential Election.
01:34Copy video clip URL Cut to general footage from inside the conference hall. Some men are dressed in traditional Polish attire. A reporters and press fill the room.
03:48Copy video clip URL A large banner reads, “Polonia Welcomes George Bush: A Great President.” A group of musicians tune their instruments, and perform a song.
06:39Copy video clip URL A woman distributes miniature Polish and American flags to people in the audience. The musicians continue to play as they await Bush’s arrival.
07:34Copy video clip URL Footage from outside the event, where a coordinator lays out the details of Bush’s arrival.
08:59Copy video clip URL Bush arrives via presidential helicopter. A cloud of dust and dirt rises and swirls around the helicopter as it lands in a vacant parking lot near the Polish National Alliance. Three helicopters arrive. Bush is escorted inside.
14:12Copy video clip URL Cut to a shot of Bush on stage at the event. The crowd sings a traditional Polish song before Bush addresses the crowd.
15:30Copy video clip URL A Polish National Alliance representative, Edward Masko, calls upon Reverend Frank Phillips and Right Reverend Bishop Jozef Zavistovski to lead those in attendance in prayer. Bush waits patiently.
19:12Copy video clip URL Masko introduces Bush and accidentally refers to him as a “freedom farter” rather than a “freedom fighter.”
20:27Copy video clip URL Bush takes the podium and begins by thanking his supporters and those involved in coordinating his visit. He then quickly moves on to talk about the numerous problems Poland is facing, commenting on the number of political parties in Poland (joking that the Polish Beer Drinkers Party had split into two parties).
22:15Copy video clip URL Bush talks about his involvement with the PNA and various events he has attended throughout his years as President, mentioning specifically a mass he attended at St. Hyacinth Basilica in Chicago. He then comments on the transformation of the world during the Cold War. “Since ’88, the whole world has been transformed, and that change really, if you look at your history, began in Poland, and Poland overthrew that cruel tyranny that Stalin imposed after Yalta.” Bush then begins to talk about the fall of imperial communism and the Soviet Union. “For decades we faced a mortal danger and the communists fought to dominate the world, and the Soviet Union threatened the very existence of free Europe, and the United States too, with its massive armies and its nuclear arsenals… But all the while, believers, believers kept on believing.” Bush emphasizes the church as being an essential part of freedom prevailing throughout the world, and goes on to talk about the relationship between Poland and the U.S.
27:31Copy video clip URL Bush comments on the need for peaceful transition to independence in Eastern Europe. Bush goes on to say, “Our leadership for freedom must continue. You know that. No one knows better. No one knows that better than Polish Americans. No one knows better the rewards of staying strong and engaged in the world. No one knows better than you the tragic harm that can come from weakness and isolation and we are going to keep working together and we are going to secure the peace and win new prosperity for Poland and all the free world.” Bush continues to talk about the efforts that need to be taken to secure peace. The camera shot at this point is blocked by someone else in the crowd.
30:02Copy video clip URL Bush closes by saying, “We know that we can count on Polish Americans to move this country forward to new glories… As long as I am President of the United States, recognizing that it is only the United States of America, it’s only our country that can lead for freedom and democracy, I will stay involved. I am not going to pull back into some fortress America. We are not going to forget our responsibilities to lead around the world.” Bush then thanks everyone and steps away from the podium. The crowd then sings a song for Bush as he signs an autograph for one of the audience members. He remains on stage to pose for a few pictures. He then leaves, and there is more general footage of the area.
33:52Copy video clip URL Tape ends.