President Barack Obama walks with Air Force Col. Jacqueline Van Ovost, 89th Airlift Wing commander from Marine One to Air Force One at Andrews Air Force Base, Md., Tuesday, Aug. 31, 2010. Obama is traveling to Fort Bliss, the sprawling Army base in El Paso, Texas, and after speaking with the troops, he will return to Washington to address the nation and formally end a combat mission in Iraq. (AP Photo/Cliff Owen)
Aboard Air Force One (AP) - As he prepares to herald the end of the U.S. combat mission in Iraq, President Barack Obama has spoken by phone to former President George W. Bush.
Aides say Obama placed the call from Air Force One Tuesday as he flew to Fort Bliss in Texas to speak to U.S. troops. Obama is scheduled to address the nation on Iraq from the Oval Office at 8 p.m. EST.
Deputy national security adviser Ben Rhodes said the call to Bush lasted a few minutes. But neither he nor others would relate what was said. Republicans have criticized Obama for opposing both the war and Bush's troop surge plan while preparing to note with fanfare the successful handover of control to Iraqi forces.
(Copyright 2010 Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)