Global war on terror was nowhere to be found.
The word “invade” made up out of whole wingnut cloth. But that didn’t keep them from cackling. Obama dares to be a “macho man,.” whines Malkin.
So it’s okay for Bush to pack his fighter pilot costume with a sock stuffed
down his drawers, but when a Democrat talks tough on going after our enemies
he (or she) is… what? Walking on Republican turf.
We did not finish the job against al Qaeda in Afghanistan. We did not develop
new capabilities to defeat a new enemy, or launch a comprehensive strategy
to dry up the terrorists’ base of support. We did not reaffirm our basic values,
or secure our homeland.
Instead, we got a color-coded politics of fear. Patriotism as the possession
of one political party. The diplomacy of refusing to talk to other countries.
A rigid 20th century ideology that insisted that the 21st century’s stateless
terrorism could be defeated through the invasion and occupation of a state.
A deliberate strategy to misrepresent 9/11 to sell a war against a country
that had nothing to do with 9/11.
It is time to turn the page. When I am President, we will wage the war that
has to be won, with a comprehensive strategy with five elements: getting out
of Iraq and on to the right battlefield in Afghanistan and Pakistan; developing
the capabilities and partnerships we need to take out the terrorists and the
world’s most deadly weapons; engaging the world to dry up support for terror
and extremism; restoring our values; and securing a more resilient homeland.
The first step must be getting off the wrong battlefield in Iraq, and taking
the fight to the terrorists in Afghanistan and Pakistan.
Obama even had the nerve to invoke 9/11, a tragedy whose avenging belongs to us all.
By the reaction so far I think Barack Obama caught everyone off guard. He turned
his campaign into what people perceive his weakness to be, lack of experience,
and gave an aggressive speech that takes on conventional wisdom on how we should
apply our foreign policy. He also delivered a bomb across Musharraf’s bow that
ruffled quite a few establishment feathers. But the speech showed imagination
and courage, mainly because it takes on all the conventional wisdom combined.
Did it go too far; show his hand? Saber rattle in a whole new way? Threaten
an ally on “the war on terror.” The intelligentsia seem to think so. As for me, I think the notion of an incursion into Pakistan is nuts. But Obama deserves credit for driving himself right into the wisemen of Washington. But he definitely left his flank open, so he’ll have to keep this rhetoric up. He’s making his push.
Will Mr. Obama be able to convince people he’s the one to accomplish what he
began talking about today? It will take more than one speech.
However, if it gets all of our candidates talking about the need to change
policy, especially where Musharraf is concerned, it’s worth it. That the catch
phrase of all times was missing in his speech is a very good sign. The people
are so hungry to hear new language, to “turn the page,” as Obama said
Republicans are all a twitter. That’s because since Iraq they’ve lost the one
issue they’ve beaten Democrats on for decades: national security. Obama took
it to them. I’ve been traveling all day, but from what I can tell they didn’t
like it much.
Obama’s Democratic opponents didn’t like it either. So make your case.
Bush is picking his jaw up off the floor.