Friday, July 18, 2008

Barack Obama's Iraq Position: Whatever It Takes (That Particular Day)- UPDATED WITH SOME COMIC RELIEF

Happy Friday, everyone- enjoy the weekend and I'll leave you with this: watch the video below (h/t America's Integrity Blog) and then tell me that Barack Obama hasn't flipped back and forth so many times on Iraq he ought to join the Jesse White Tumblers.

UPDATED: If that video put you in a bad mood, check out the much funnier video posted over at the new Experimentium Crucis Blog by blogger Lone Wolf. It's a funny (but also scary) view of how things might turn out under a president Obama.


Anonymous said...

This scares the life out of me. Who is he really? Is it possible that the American pubic will finally begin to see that he's hardly ready for the most important position in the world. The late Tim Russett would have had a field day with this YouTube presentation, TA. Sadly, the mainstream media has embraced this guy in a way that I have never seen in any election, including the Kennedy/Nixon race in 1960. Let's see how far this YouTube video travels.

Rob_N said...

Anon, you must scare easily.

The GOP may not have much going for it but at least they have creative TV clip editors.

Please indicate what part of Obama's 16 Month Plan for Iraq has changed since he introduced it in 2007...

He has stated, since he introduced it in the Senate, that he wants to bring 1 to 2 combat brigades out of Iraq while leaving enough of a training force to ensure the Iraqis who take over for our GIs are up to speed.

By the by, that sounds an awful lot like a "time horizon" that someone else (with the initials GWB) seems to suddenly be advocating.

As for the surge... it's amazing to me how partisan Republicans can so easily overlook the fact that the surge happened simultaneously with an increase in payoffs and bribes to Iraqi warlords. Do you not think that had anything to do with it?

Finally, what is Sen. McCain's position on Iraq this week? Starting in 2001 he said we should finish Afghanistan first; specifically saying we should finish in Afghanistan before doing anything about Iraq. At some point he decided to ignore al Quaida and the Taliban in Afghanistan in order to play cheerleader for the Iraq War. Then he wanted to send more troops to Iraq then Bush did; then he decided that wasn't cool so he scrubbed it from his campaign site. Then he said Rumsfeld was doing great as our troops were embroiled in the Iraqi civil war quagmire; that was before he said he questioned Rummy's leadership all along. He also said he didn't want a long term commitment in Iraq; then he said he wanted to stay in Iraq for 100, or even 1000 or a million years. Most recently he decided to throw Pres. Bush under the bus by saying Bush's plan in Iraq was wrong all along...

Despite the careful editing and melodramatic GOP music, Obama's been consistent on Iraq no matter the cost to his electoral chances. It is McCain who can't make up his mind and depends on weather vanes and fingers to the wind.

Anonymous said...

Rob N. You need to be hired by the seals campaign.I have seen your posts on capitol fax and you seem to have half a head.

However,you are dead wrong here my friend. In the state of Illinois you need experience in the form of a license to do everything from cutting hair, to driving cars to financial stuff. How in the heck then is it not good enough to run the country?

My buddies are overseas, and I just don't get how we can have a country where barbers have to have more training than a man with millions of lives in his hands.

As for fearmongering on the war, give me a break. Every democratic campaign since the 1980's has used the line that the GOP will take your social security so please forgive me if I don't cry for you Argentina.

Team America said...

Wow, Rob_N, that's quite a response. You must've had that ready just in case anyone local discovered that video. Too bad you didn't pay a lot of attention, as most of your counterpoints miss the mark.

For example, you blame 'clever video editing' for showing Obama in one clip stating clearly that he would leave a "strike force" in Iraq, where in the next clip, he denies he ever said it... even though we can see the video comparison ourselves? Whose fault is it again? Those nasty GOP film editors?

The surge? Well, those despicable film editors again, having the gall to dig up plenty of video of Obama railing against the very idea, and how it was doomed to failure and NEVER going to work (in fact, it would make things worse, according to Obama, since there was absolutely no possibility of a 'military solution'), and then showing the later video where Obama says, of course, I ALWAYS said it was going to work. As the video noted, you're never wrong if you never admit you were wrong.

In fact, Rob, you're even worse than the Obama equivocations... you seem to credit the recent successes in Iraq, not with the 'honorable troops' that Obama wants to focus on (his only way to try to shift the credit elsewhere from Bush/McCain now that it's clear the surge strategy has worked), but rather "the surge happened simultaneously with an increase in payoffs and bribes to Iraqi warlords." Do you REALLY want to come out and say our progess in Iraq is not due to the troops' courage (as Obama does, at least), but instead it was because of spreading money around like it was a Chicago machine election? Even Obama himself isn't that stupid.

Glad to see you took time out from your flame war with Illinois Review to come check in on us here, Rob- we needed a laugh after having to swallow Obama's swill in that video.

DCEyes said...

Obama was against Iraq.

Now he is for "refining" it.

Obama was for Rev. Wright.

Now he won't go to his church of 22 years.

Obama was for the DC gun ban.

Now he agrees with the Supreme Court decision.

Obama was for raising capital gains taxes.

He is still for that.

Obama is against off shore drilling.

He is still against it today.

Anonymous said...

Yet again, we see the typical GOP strategy coming into play: when behind, call the man a "flip-flopper". It sunk John Kerry, unfortunately for TA, it isn't going to work with Obama.

Every single poster on this thread, even those I agree with, overlook 2 key things. First and foremost, conditions in a war CHANGE. Unlike the inability of GWB to speak english or the inability of Congress to override a veto, the conditions in Iraq have and will constantly be changing. When the surge idea was initially proposed, the United States was seeing double-digit casualties on a daily basis and, at the time, it seemed rediculous to throw more troops into the Bush-Rumsfeld death trap known as Iraq (specifically Baghdad and parts of Fallujah).
Secondly, and even more importantly, every single person on this blog and every person who has tried to sell this nation that Iraq was a justifiable and winnable war (wrong on both counts) forgets one essential aspect. Iraq is NOT a traditional war pitting two nations against one another. Instead, we have a country attempting to root out guerilla insurgents who fight for an idea. As defense expert and member for the National Security Council Dr. Stephen Biddle told me when I met him in summer of '07, defense experts universally agree on a soldier to person ratio of 1:50 that is needed to win in guerilla warfare. The U.S. has had in the neighborhood of 150k-200k troops in Iraq throughout, putting the current troop to soldier ratio about about 100:1, which isn't sufficient to root out insurgency and provide domestic security in Iraq. What Mark Krik and GWB both realized about 2 years into this war, because they were told so by their advisors, is that US would need TWICE the current troop level to be able to have sustainable success in Iraq. However, they kept that under-wraps because 2006 was an election year and the president could never rally support for 200k-250k more troops for an unpopular war.

The reason the surge worked is because it helped the US gain the numbers it needed (the ratio) in strategic areas. Obama, like every other Senator, has been briefed on this and knows it to be true. But neither him nor McCain will EVER advocate doubling troop levels, so instead of getting pulverized in an under-armed war, the only logical option is to train Iraqi soldiers and pull the outnumbered American soliders out. Hence, the Obama plan. Thus, to call him a flip-flopper is not only false, but again proves that our electorate has a long way to go before calling ourselves an enlightened democratic society.

Until Next Time,
A Concerned Colonial

Anonymous said...

I heard there were two great stories out of DC this week. Roll Call and Real Clear Politics ran something on Kirk doing well against seals. Any chance you have the two pieces and can post them?

Team America said...

Anon 5:29- you heard right, and they were good articles, but I didn't link to them because they basically repeated information that TA regulars already knew. But since you asked, here they are:

Illinois: Kirk Touts Advantages in Campaign Memo
July 17, 2008
By Matthew Murray
Roll Call Staff

In a memo distributed by his campaign on Wednesday, Rep. Mark Kirk (R) said his 2.5-to-1 cash advantage, popularity with Jewish voters and challenger Dan Seals' (D) gaffes will again make him bulletproof in 2008.
Kirk, who beat the marketing consultant by roughly 14,000 votes in the previous cycle, predicted that downtrodden Gov. Rod Blagojevich (D) will generate "a strong anti-Democratic headwind" in the North Shore district — despite home-state Democratic Sen. Barack Obama's name at the top of the ballot as the White House nominee.

In the memo, Kirk also appears to portray his general election opponent, who holds a University of Chicago MBA, as a jobless laggard who pays his personal expenses out of his campaign coffers.

"After losing his bid for Congress, Seals did not return to GE Finance and was unemployed," the memo reads. "Near the end of the 2006 campaign, Seals paid himself $25,000 out of his campaign donor funds — an act that is legal but strongly discouraging to donors."

The memo added: "In May, Seals filed his 2008 financial disclosure with the U.S. House showing only $3,300 in earned income through the first quarter of the year.

RealClearPolitics Politics Nation Blog

By Reid Wilson (AIM: PoliticsNation)
« Chabot Leads In Cincy | Blog Home Page | Dem Way Up In GOP Seat »

July 18, 2008
Kirk Looks Strong
There are fewer incumbents who better fit the description of a paranoid incumbent than Illinois Rep. Mark Kirk. The moderate whose district sits just north of Chicago won his first term with just 51%, and after two easier elections won a fourth term in 2006 with just 53% of the vote. This year, a new poll for his campaign shows, Kirk leads his 2006 opponent by a much wider margin.

The poll, conducted by McLaughlin & Associates for Kirk's campaign, surveyed 300 likely voters on 6/9 for a margin of error of +/- 5.6%. Kirk and advertising executive Dan Seals were tested among a sample that included 35% Democratic respondents, 33% Republican respondents and 32% independents or others.

General Election Matchup
Kirk...........53 (+3 from last, 3/08)
Seals........32 (+3)

A one-day poll is not a standard survey length, and Democrats will make an issue out of the numbers. Most pollsters will conduct their surveys over multiple days to ensure that one news story or event doesn't weigh too heavily on the sample's mind. Too, the sample size is relatively small.

But Kirk's lead is easily outside the margin of error, and his favorable rating is a strong 67% to 16%. Seals' approval rating is 39% compared with 16% who see him unfavorably, a good ratio for a challenger, though he will have to bring up his name identification before he closes the gap with Kirk.

A moderate, Kirk is not likely to be cast as in lock step with Congressional Republicans or President Bush. And though John Kerry and Al Gore won the district in both 2000 and 2004, Kirk has been on the ballot with hometown favorite Barack Obama before, winning 64% of the vote when Kerry beat Bush by a 53%-47% margin in the district.

Still, Democrats are optimistic that they will eventually take the district back. Seals beat out a former Clinton Administration official in the Democratic primary in February, but if he can't knock off Kirk this time around, it may be the last time Seals makes a bid for Congress.

Lone Wolf a.k.a. RPT said...

Thanks for the plug TA! Added you to my blog roll also. Great site. We need more of us out there to wake up the sheeple of Illinois, at least northern Illinois, and put the Chicago machine in the scrap metal graveyard!

Publia said...

Concerned Colonial,

Love your name, but when you refer to the "Obama plan" you have to be joking.

Rob_N said...


Why put words in my mouth? And how many times has it been that McCain has said something and then a week or two later denied he ever said it? Most folks paying attention recognize he's got the corner on that market.

As to your response regarding the White House's policy of paying off Iraqi warlords, most experts and analysts (and I admit you and I are from that status of understanding, but we can at least inform ourselves of what they're saying)... anyway, most experts and analysts believe it is the combination of the change in combat response (local, smaller forces in the neighborhoods rather than larger camps on the outskirts) and the bribes paid to warlords that has seen a reduction in violence there.

Obama (and McCain... and Bush... and, apparently, you) aren't talking about that last point out of political necessity, as you allude. But the point is valid nonetheless.

When Obama has stated that the surge hasn't worked as planned he's very clearly been discussing the fact that the Iraqi political power didn't meet the benchmarks set by Pres. Bush. The surge was intended to give the Iraqi Parliament "breathing room" to reach agreements on power sharing, oil revenues, etc. Instead, as you may recall, the Iraqi members of Parliament went on vacation last summer while our guys and gals bravely fended off their civil war.

Again, you and your colleagues here have failed to point out which parts of Sen. Obama's 16 month plan for strategic redeployment of our nation's stalwart GIs has in any way changed since he introduced it in 2007. Even Iraqi Prime Minister Maliki agrees with his plan (though he did backtrack just a tad a bit later, presumably after our Republican President's staff gave him a call. ;)

As for Mac's flip-flops, please do try to answer them.

You'll note that I referenced a variety of links -- took me a while to source that material -- but the pattern is clear. McCain sticks his finger to the wind when it suits him; trying to look tough for one audience, then trying to be "un-Bush" for another, then switching gears again when it suits him. He's even taken his Iraqi "strategy" (if that's what you call simply keeping our guys and gals there indefinitely) off his campaign site because he's done so many switcharoos.

At least he and his would-be mentor Pres. Bush are now listening to Sen. Obama's proposals and sitting down to talk with Iran, agreeing to a timeline (excuse me, time "horizon") on redeploying combat troops out of Iraq, and even sending more GIs to Afghanistan to start paying attention to what has become a modern day Korean War (the "forgotten" war).

You conveniently chose to ignore all of that, and much more.

As for Ill Review, Mr. Dienhart can take care of himself. If he feels a need to skirt the truth in order to promote his preferred candidate, McCain, then so be it.

Anonymous said...

That douchebag Obama vows to continue "to vigorously pursue the war on terror" according to the nightly news. I'm thrilled that we can expect more pointless and monetarily wasteful military adventurism regardless of which special interest puppet wins in November.

Publia said...

rob n
RE: "When Obama has stated that the surge hasn't worked as planned he's very clearly been discussing the fact that the Iraqi political power didn't meet the benchmarks set by Pres. Bush."

Then why doesn't Obama say that, or is this the responsibility of the largest campaign posse assembled in the entire history of the United States?

Anonymous said...


Your video doesn't work

Team America said...

Well, it seems to work for me- just checked it. It may be your computer...

Rob_N said...


He has said that. No, he doesn't repeat every line of every policy proposal every time he speaks. Neither does McCain or anyone else -- it's too boring and long. ;)

But, yes, it is also the responsibility of the largest campaign posse ever assembled to help make these points and keep folks like TA here on topic. Same goes for McCain supporters I should think.

That's the beauty of our great country -- TA can post a video he thinks is the bomb and I can point out all the problems with it (and the candidate it apparently is designed to support ...)

To that end, notice how rather than showing a YouTube video with Mac describing his positions on Iraq clearly and with "straight talk" TA instead 'supports' Sen. McCain by showing a vid trying to tear down McCain's opponent instead of building up McCain the candidate...

Why is that?

PS: TA, this isn't really another McCain flip-flop but it does go to show how out of touch he is. All weekend he's been complaining that Der Spiegel mis-translated Iraqi PM al-Maliki's stated support for Obama's plan for strategic redeployment.

Turns out the translator worked for the PM's office, not the magazine, and that the direct translation from the original Arabic is spot on -- Maliki supports troop withdrawal by 2010 (at least until the White House made a phone call seeking "clarification" -- possibly while also dropping a few f-bombs).

Oh, and now we learn that McCain doesn't even know where Iraq is. Thought you'd like that one since you're so focused on borders for Congressional districts yourself. (And, yes, I know it was just a flub... yet another.)

Anonymous said...

Rob's comments are cute.

Even cuter were Obama's which WGN Radio has been running for the last 16 hours.

"Isn't it true Senator Obama that the surge has contributed to the stability of the region?"

"Ah, er, ee, eh, oh, I uh, you see, um, hignsight is 50-50, um, er, you know, um, er, . . . (trails off) (And the liberal left laughs at the way George W. speaks?)

The campaign then followed with a statement translating the above. The surge wasn't necessary after all, peace just happened to sneak up on the region without it. Although Rob seems angry that part of the process of the surge included talking to the opposition and bringing them into line as opposed to forcing them at gunpoint, any war includes such measures.

Unscripted question. Gibberish for an answer. Yet again. Sounds more like the stumbling syntax of Todd Stroger and Richard Daley every day! : -)

Louis G. Atsaves

Lone Wolf a.k.a. RPT said...

Excellent observation Louis! I couldn't have said it better myself. B. Hussein Obama's speaking skills are straight out of Chicagoooo! Amazing how a teleprompter can change a guys persona. Maybe he should really do us a favor and do something useful that he is good at, like reading books to kids during story time at the local library.

Anonymous said...

Louis, you're right, its nice to see Obama is human. After all, you would NEVER stumble on a single question from a reporter after spending the last year of your life being constantly bombarded (24/7) with questions from reporters, journalists and political pundits.

Lone Wolf, it is pretty much pathetic that the only way you can insult Obama or attempt to make him be seen in a negative light is to use the name of a man who was an enemy of our nation and transpose it with Obama's. Not only does your blatent racism destory ANY credit that you had on this blog, it only further shows that there is no one here who can legitimately prove why McCain, who "magically" turned himself from moderate-nearly liberal to strictconservative in a 3 year span is better than Obama.

Oh, and on the subject of books:
Just remember that you and Louis voted for him and his plans for America (which included 2 wars, higher gas prices, economic recession twice, and budget deficit)

Until Next Time,
A VERY Concerned Colonial