The Washington Times - July 7, 2008, 10:01AM

President Bush, who celebrated his 62nd birthday Saturday on board Air Force One en route to Japan, made a wish Monday during the first day of the G-8 summit.

The president joined his fellow G-8 leaders in Toyako, Japan, in placing a handwritten note on a black bamboo Tanabata tree, which is a Japanese tradition performed to celebrate an annual star festival.

Mr. Bush’s handwritten note read: “I wish for a world free from tyranny: the tyrrany of hunger, disease and free from tyrannical governments. I wish for a world in which the universal desire for liberty is realized. I wish for the advance of new technologies that will improve the human condition and protect our environment. I wish God’s blessings on all. George W. Bush.”

Reginald Dale, a senior fellow at the Center for Strategic and International Studies, told reporters in advance of the trip that Mr. Bush would take part in this ceremony, and said, tongue-in-cheek, that he held high expectations for the event.

“I don’t know what the record of this working is, but let’s hope it does,” Mr. Dale said jokingly.

Jon Ward, White House correspondent, The Washington Times