Friday, September 05, 2008

Wrong on Iraq

A guest post by JS

Obama is going to have some explaining to do if McCain and the media have anything to say about it.

In an interview with Bill O'Reilly, the following (excerpted) exchange took place. I have placed my comments in red:

MR. O'REILLY: I think you were desperately wrong on the surge. And I think you should admit it to the nation ... So why won't you say, I was right in the beginning, I was wrong about that?

SEN. OBAMA: I think that there's no doubt that the violence is down. I believe that that is a testimony to the troops that were sent and General Petraeus and Ambassador Crocker. I think that the surge has succeeded in ways that nobody anticipated, by the way, including President Bush and the other supporters.

And yet McCain and Leiberman famously endorsed the surge and called for at least 20,000 more troops when it was first formally present by the AEI on January 5, 2007. Leiberman added at the time that McCain “is taking a position that is not based on putting his finger in the air and gauging the direction of the political winds. He is doing what he sincerely believes is best for the national security and safety of our country…. John’s taking a gutsy position.”

Obama had this to say in January 2007: "I am not persuaded that 20,000 additional troops in Iraq are going to solve the sectarian violence there. In fact, I think it will do the reverse...I don't think the president's strategy is going to work...the only way we're going to change the dynamic in Iraq and start seeing political commendation is actually if we create a system of phased redeployment."

MR. O'REILLY: If it were up to you, there wouldn't have been a surge.

SEN. OBAMA: No. Hold on a second, Bill. If you look at the debate that was taking place, we had gone through five years of mismanagement of this war that I thought was disastrous. And the president wanted to double-down and continue on open-ended policy that did not create the kinds of pressure in the Iraqis to take responsibility and reconcile --

MR. O'REILLY: It worked. Come on.

SEN. OBAMA: Bill, what I've said is -- I've already said it succeeded beyond our wildest dreams.

Or just Obama and the other Dem's wildest dreams.

MR. O'REILLY: Right! So why can't you just say, I was right in the beginning, and I was wrong about the surge?

SEN. OBAMA: Because there is an underlying problem with what we've done. We have reduced the violence but the Iraqis still haven't taken a responsibility. And we still don't have the kind of political reconciliation. We are still spending, Bill, $10 to $12 billion a month.

Way to spin the issue. Keep setting a moving target so we can never declare victory. Anyone with common sense would realize political solutions in Iraq and decreased US spending can't happen without there first being security in the country.

So, will McCain make hay of it? We'll see. Obama already admitted the Surge worked to Katie Couric back in July.

Katie Couric Interview
Bill O'Reilly Interview
Buy DB's book. (I finally did)

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