Forget the Alamo: The Rise and Fall of an American Myth by Bryan Burrough, Chris Tomlinson, and Jason Stanford:
As a new century dawned, the reigning champion of the Heroic Anglo Narrative was George W. Bush, the Connecticut native who as Texas governor in the 1990s was especially fond of Alamo references. When, during a trip to the Baseball Hall of Fame, someone asked him about a fistfight involving his fellow Texan Nolan Ryan, Bush inexplicably chirped, “Remember the Alamo.” Hands down his most memorable invocation came when the professional golfer Ben Crenshaw invited him to address the U.S. Ryder Cup team during a 1999 match against a European team outside Boston. The United States was trailing badly that morning when Bush walked into the clubhouse and simply read aloud Travis’s letter, the one that finished with “Victory or Death.” He then said “Godspeed” and left. The moment had the intended effect. “Let’s go out and kill them!” one player blurted. When the Americans rallied to an improbable win, Governor Bush and the Alamo legend reaped a share of the credit.