bush-welcome-africa.jpgPresident Bush highlighted the successes of his mostly-compassionate African policies while on a recent 5-nation tour there, from a quadrupling of U.S. humanitarian aid since he took office to his programs that fight AIDS and malaria.

He and his wife Laura visited a sub-Saharan US-built hospital that has saved thousands of lives and a factory that facilitates the new program in Tanzania to distribute — in partnership with the World Bank — 5 million bed nets providing every child in the country up to the age of five with protection from the deadly Malaria mosquito virus.

“Americans should feel proud, mighty proud, of the work we are doing in Africa,” he said during a recap of the trip which included a presidential slide show. “Without a doubt, this was the most exciting, exhilarating, uplifting trip I’ve taken since I’ve been the president,” Bush told hundreds assembled at the event for an African development foundation.

He called U.S. aid to Africa an act of self-interest, citing the desperation that might otherwise fuel extremist attacks.

250,000 African men, women and children now receive lifesaving HIV anti-viral drugs — up from 800 four years ago — thanks largely to the plan Bush launched in 2003. One of his most widely praised foreign-policy initiatives, rock star Bono said it “turned the fate of the continent around”.

Bush urged lawmakers to quickly approve his new proposal to double America’s donation to the Global HIV/AIDS fight, from 15 billion dollars over five years to 30 billion.

While on tour, the president and Laura Bush danced with locals (watch video below).

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