The Trial of George W. Bush

A Novel

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The Trial of George W. Bush
Square One Publishers


6.0 X 9.0 in
224 pg

FICTION / Political

$16.95 Paperback (Trade paperback (US))
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By:  Terry Jastrow



Following the worst terrorist attacks in American history on September 11, 2001, President George W. Bush pledged to bring those responsible to justice, especially the mastermind behind it all, Osama bin Laden. After failing to capture bin Laden in Afghanistan, George W. Bush shifted his attention and that of our country to Saddam Hussein and Iraq, neither of which had anything to do with the 9/11 attacks (as history has proven). Bush, Jr., wanted a war in Iraq, and with the help of others in his administration, he succeeded in waging one regardless of its price in human lives or expense to his country's treasury. George W. Bush’s Iraq War lasted eight and a half years, killed tens of thousands of people, and cost the United States trillions of dollars.

In Terry Jastrow’s new novel, The Trial of George W. Bush, past evil deeds are exposed and reckoned with in a most unexpected way. At a time when America’s political leadership has alienated itself from the rest of the world, the scales of justice respond in a trial at the International Criminal Court in which former President George W. Bush is accused of war crimes and crimes against humanity. This fascinating trial brings together eyewitness testimony from a former Secretary of State, the Commander of US Central Command who oversaw military operations, an American counterterrorism expert, and a female Iraqi blogger, who reads from the blogs she wrote while Bush’s war was destroying her country.

As the trial ends after weeks of contentious statements and nonstop coverage by an overzealous media, a captivated worldwide public awaits the determination of Bush’s fate. Will he be found guilty or not? The surprising verdict is revealed in Terry Jastrow’s new novel, The Trial of George W. Bush.


"Provocative . . . [author Terry] Jastrow shines . . . [an] intriguing thought experiment."Publishers Weekly

"Jastrow brings a true sense of drama to his subject matter – Bush and the Iraq War Crimes . . . Facts well brewed with fiction make this a controversial and enthralling new novel. Timely – and timeless – as we observe global incidents."Grady Harp, top book reviewer

"The Trial of George W. Bush is an honest and true page turner that engrosses you through nailbiting, high stakes courtroom entertainment while simultaneously capturing your intellect on some very big, universal questions. Big subject, big book . . . READ IT!"Ken Solomon - President, Tennis Channel

"I read The Trial of George W. Bush and found it thoroughly thought-provoking and entertaining. The technical knowledge Terry Jastrow mastered to write the book is stunning. He absolutely nailed it. Just super enjoyable and impressive. Bravo!"Matt Herrington. Partner - Paul Hastings LLP

“If hindsight is 20/20, what is foresight? A question posed existentially in a fascinating new book, The Trial of George W. Bush, written by Terry Jastrow. While the prosecution has the advantage of hindsight, the defense is restricted to foresight, and the reader must reconcile the two. The question becomes, What would you have done given the same circumstances? It’s a seductive question that makes the book a must-read. There is also a shock on the last page.”Bob Dowling, former Publisher and Editor in Chief, Hollywood Reporter

“I find Terry Jastrow’s novel so intriguing in that it reads like a nonfiction book. It’s so well written and believable, I could hardly wait to find out what happens. I absolutely agree with all the wonderful comments the book is receiving. Clever as it is…are you sure this is fiction? So well done.”Priscilla Presley

“Terry Jastrow’s debut novel – simultaneously fictional and historically compelling – pulsates a throbbing plot and quintessential questions of the criminality of the Iraq War. With precision and passion, rare intelligence and a journalistic integrity, The Trial of George W. Bush delivers Bush to The Hague’s ICC (International Criminal Court) to be tried for war crimes. Fast and furious, The Trial of George W. Bush resonates as we realize that we do not have the freedom to attack other countries because we disagree with their form of government or we need their resources for our own benefit – or do we? Spectacular.”The Review Broads

“The way the book is written is extremely realistic. The reader will feel like he is in the courtroom. The tension is clear and even frightening at times. The trial leads to an unexpected conclusion that you will have to read to discover.”Mystery Suspense Reviews

“Terry Jastrow’s The Trial of George W. Bush is a masterful blend of fact and fiction. A powerful story that entertains and edifies. Can the president of the United States ultimately do whatever he wants? Was Bush’s maverick decision to go to war with Iraq a foreshadowing of things to come? A perfect book for these unsettling times.”Terri Hanauer, film and theatrical director/screenwriter

“Terry Jastrow’s terrific new novel, The Trial of George W. Bush, poses questions that need to be asked and debated. I won’t stop thinking about it for weeks, maybe months. It is the must-read book of the summer.”Catherine Bell, star of JAG, Army Wives and Hallmark’s The Good Witch

“Realistically, George W. Bush’s decision to invade Iraq will never lead to a war crimes trial. Yet by exploring this provocative ‘what if’ the considerably researched The Trial of George W. Bush is a thought-provoking read.”Tim Gebhart

“The story is an interesting mix of both fact and fiction and the author does so very skillfully…Overall, I thought the book was fascinating and if you enjoy legal or political dramas I think you’ll feel the same way. In the end, the story made me think, which is probably what the author’s goal was in the first place.”In Our Spare Time blog

Conflict, suspense, and an unpredictable reveal are brilliantly delivered in Terry Jastrow’s break-out novel, The Trial of George W. Bush. It is a riveting and relevant philosophical must read played out at the International Criminal Court, which will ultimately make for a must watch multi-episode TV event.”Michael Doven, CEO of United Pictures Group

Readers of both political and legal thrillers are in for a real treat with such a mix and its close attention to fictional and nonfiction detail and the kinds of ethical questions raised by high-level political decisions.”D. Donovan, Senior Reviewer, Midwest Book Review

Not since A Few Good Men has the tension, consequences and gotcha moments of a take-no-prisoners trial been captured so expertly."Michael Wisner, editor The Piper

“Terry Jastrow’s masterpiece of realistic fiction will inspire some, anger others, and is sure to provoke water cooler conversation across our divided nation. Whatever your position on the legitimacy of the war in Iraq, this is a book you’re going to want to read.”Michael Scharf, Dean of Case Western Reserve University School of Law Author of “Enemy of the State: The Trial and Execution of Saddam Hussein”

“Carefully researched and brilliantly argued, this is compelling, infuriating, and cathartic."Lou Aronica, New York Times best-selling author

“The Trial of George W. Bush takes a very clever and original premise and delivers on it. The novel presents the idea that presidents should be held criminally liable for the loss of lives in an unjust war. Though the book is fiction, it reads like fact. You are caught up in the events and the ethical dilemma they present. A rare novel that chews as much as it bites off— and then some.Peter Lefcourt, best-selling author of The Deal and The Dreyfus Affair

“How do I describe this novel? Riveting. Complex. Confusing. And Brilliant."Wonder of Words blog

“The Trial of George W. Bush is a very good read… Jastrow captures the essence of Bush.Cheryl’s Book Nook

“Those who will most appreciate The Trial of George W. Bush will be of two types: political partisans who believe that justice was not done in the Iraq War and those who enjoy legal procedurals.”Miriam Downey, the Cyberlibrarian

“Readers who like legal fiction would enjoy The Trial of George W. Bush. And the first chapter with the abduction would also appeal to those who like Tom Clancy novels.”Amy Nickless

“[T]he trial itself is engrossing. The issues of weapons of mass destruction – and the failure to find any – are addressed, as are the unintended consequences of the war, that we are still dealing with today. Media reactions are credibly portrayed as well.”Hilary Williamson, BookLoons

“Terry Jastrow’s brilliant, biting novel is a must-read for anyone who cares about international peace, war crimes past and future, and how justice can be delivered in unexpected ways. If you think you know how this story ends, start reading now!”Sarah Lovett, co author (with Valerie Plame) of NY Times bestseller Blowback

“This story is a great what if idea. What if Bush was held accountable for everything that happened when he invaded Iraq? Would he be found justified? Would he be sentenced? The possibilities are endless… a great concept.J Bronder Book Reviews

“The plot of The Trial of George W. Bush by Terry Jastrow grabbed me from the start…Jastrow has done a remarkable job, and if the topic interests you, this is a must-read.”Men Reading Books blog

“I really liked The Trial of George W. Bush. This novel starts off strong and doesn’t lose momentum for one moment.”Jay Snook, The Good Men Project

“Terry Jastrow’s novel, The Trial of George W. Bush, is a highly efficacious exercise in using 'What If.' In this case, 'What If the International Criminal Court puts George W. Bush on trial at The Hague for war crimes connected to the war in Iraq?' If your initial response is, 'Never gonna happen, but an interesting idea,' then . . . you’ll want to read the book.”Joey Madia, New Mystics Enterprises

Author Biography

Terry Jastrow received his bachelor's degree in communications from the University of Houston. Upon graduation, he worked for ABC Sports, where he became the youngest network producer/director in history. His credits include one Super Bowl, sixty-two major golf championships, and six Olympic games, including the opening and closing ceremonies of the 1984 Summer Olympics, which were watched by an estimated one billion people around the world. As a television producer/director, he has won seven Emmy awards.

Unpublished endorsement

“I recently narrated a fine novel by Terry Jastrow with the provocative title and subject, The Trial of George W. Bush. I really enjoyed performing this work of fiction as I got to create the voice of George W. Bush and other notable characters. I feel the novel raises many important questions about war, politics and responsibility. It’s definitely a story worth telling, and certainly one worth knowing. Regardless of your political preference, the book explores an important subject that is presented in a balanced and yet vivid and exciting way by a multi-Emmy award-winning author, Terry Jastrow.” –Peace on Earth, Jim Meskimen

Table of contents


Acknowledgments, vii

Preface, ix

Introduction, 1

1. Welcome to the International Criminal Court, 3

2. Opening Volleys, 17

3. Facing the Music, 35

4. Eye of the Storm, 61

5. Parade of Prosecution Witnesses, 75

6. Heavy Artillery, 97

7. Quid Pro Quo, 111

8. Family Matters, 129

9. In Search of the Truth, 137

10. Back in the Saddle, 167

11. Final Arguments, 185

12. Can There Be Justice?, 199

13. All Over but the Shouting, 207

Bibliography, 212

About the Author, 214

Introduction or preface

Introduction In the wake of World War II, smart men and woman from many nations created the United Nations, which is located today in New York City. In June 1998, under the auspices of the UN, legal experts from around the world gathered in Rome to discuss, debate, and finally draft the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court, which established genocide, crimes against humanity, war crimes, and the crime of aggression as core international crimes and created the International Criminal Court. The International Criminal Court is meant for those occasions when countries are unable or unwilling to bring perpetrators of these core crimes to justice themselves. Its official seat is located in The Hague, Netherlands. The Rome Statute went into force on July 1, 2002, having reached sixty signatories, the minimum number required for it to enter into force. Today, there are one hundred ninety-five countries in the world, one hundred and twenty-three of which are parties to the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court, meaning these countries have not only signed the statute but also ratified or acceded to it. Why, you may ask, aren’t more countries parties to this important statute, such as the United States? Well, powerful people in non-party countries do not want to be governed by international law because they know they are committing crimes under international law or may do so in the future, and thus would be subject to arrest and trial for these crimes at the International Criminal Court. In 2003, yet another destructive and perhaps illegal war occurred, the Iraq War, which resulted in the deaths of thousands of coalition soldiers, including 4,424 US soliders, and hundreds of thousands of Iraqis. The following story is set in the future and is a product of the author’s imagination. While the information relating to the Iraq War is factual, the real people, places, and institutions that appear in the narrative have been fictionalized. The president of the United States, with his contrarian personality and disquieting policies and practices, has created a dystopian state. He has withdrawn America from protective treaties with close allies, pulled US troops out of allied countries, negotiated trade agreements with rogue nations, done everything in his power to insulate Americans from the legal liability set forth by international law, and imposed sanctions on individuals with close ties to the International Criminal Court. It is in this contentious state of affairs that our story begins. Calculating that bringing a former US president to trial would be more feasible than a sitting or recently retired president, the ICC conducts an investigation of George W. Bush in connection with crimes that may have been committed during the Iraq War. It concludes that the 43rd president of the United States should be brought to trial. Whether or not this fictional story becomes fact is up to brave citizens who can no longer tolerate innocent people being victimized by needless wars, and who insist upon the application of established laws to bring those responsible for the victimzation to justice.