George W. Bush was once referred to by journalists as the “king of blunders”. In a speech on the Ukraine war, the ex-president made an unpleasant slip of the tongue. He did, however, have a sense of humour.

Former US President George W. Bush made an unpleasant slip of the tongue in a speech on the Ukraine war.

At an event in Dallas, Texas on Wednesday (local time), the 75-year-old spoke of Russian President Vladimir Putin’s “decision by a single man to launch a completely unjustified and brutal invasion of Iraq”. Then he immediately corrected himself: “I mean: to the Ukraine.” When Bush noticed the irritation in the audience, he added, alluding to his age: “75”.

After the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, a few months after Bush took office, the United States launched a “war on terror”. The 2003 war in Iraq followed the invasion of Afghanistan. The military action against Iraq was justified with supposed weapons of mass destruction owned by the ruler Saddam Hussein, but these were never found. Bush remained president until 2009.