President Obama and predecessor George W. Bush met in Tanzania for a solemn wreath-laying ceremony Tuesday morning on the grounds of the American Embass. The ceremony marked the memory of those killed by a terrorist bomb there 15 years ago.
President Obama was originally scheduled to preside at the ceremony alone, but Bush's trip happened to overlap (Bush is visiting the country with wife Laura, who is holding a summit for African first ladies), and the White House announced Monday that he would join the president.
The pair bowed their heads in a moment of silence as a marine laid a red, white, and blue wreath in front of the memorial to honor the lives of those who died when an Al Qaeda bomb exploded at the old American Embassy in 1998. Ten Tanzanians died, and 85 others were injured in the attack.
The new embassy opened in 2003. A bronze plaque in front of the new building bears an inscription from President Bill Clinton that reads "We must honor the memory of those we mourn by pressing the cause of freedom and justice for which they lived. It is the burden of our history and the bright hope of the world's future."
Interestingly, President Obama visits Africa in Bush's shadow. Bush is popular in Africa, because he devoted billions of dollars to fighting AIDS on the continent. Obama praised the AIDS program this week, and announced plans to increase trade and investment and upgrade the delivery of electricity in Africa as well.
Image: Saul Loeb/AFP/Getty Images