McCain Said He Could Identify the ‘Good Guys’ but May Have Posed with Rebel Kidnapper

McCain Said He Could Identify the ‘Good Guys’ but May Have Posed with Rebel Kidnapper
Image by Handout/Reuter / Reuters
Image by Handout/Reuter / Reuters

McCain is pushing back against allegations that he posed with rebels who kidnapped 11 Lebanese Shi’ite pilgrims, after saying we should arm Syrian rebels because we can tell who the good guys are.

John McCain recently made a secret trip to Syria, during which he met with rebels. Ostensibly this was supposed to burnish his Obama criticism cred, as the people he met with just so happen to agree with the Senator on what the United States should be doing in Syria. Nothing makes John McCain happier than interventionism mixed with Obama bashing.

The New York Times ran with a story headlined “Senator John McCain Confident of Identifying ‘Good Guys’ in Syria” on Wednesday. On Thursday, the Senator is in hot water for posing with alleged rebels who kidnapped 11 Lebanese Shi’ite pilgrims, though his office denies this. They do say it’s “regrettable” if true.

Senator McCain (R-AZ) has been visibly enraged by President Obama’s caution on involving the US in Syria, as McCain advocates for intervention. The New York Times explained that after McCain’s meeting with rebels in Syria, he was confident that we can send weapons to Syria without worrying that they will fall into the wrong hands, “We can identify who these people are. We can help the right people.”

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Pushing back against criticisms of his charge first and ask questions later approach, McCain explained that radical fighters make up only a small part of the rebels forces, “Every single day, more and more extremists flow in… They’re flowing in all the time, these extremists. But they still do not make up a sizeable portion.”

Good to know that the Senator can identify the good guys.

Yet, Buzzfeed reported on Thursday that McCain may have posed with rebels who kidnapped 11 Lebanese Shi’ite pilgrims. Awkward.

Senator John McCain’s office is pushing back against reports that while visiting Syria this week he posed in a photo with rebels who kidnapped 11 Lebanese Shi’ite pilgrims.

The photo, released by McCain’s office, shows McCain with a group of rebels. Among them are two men identified in the Lebanese press as Mohamed Nour and Abu Ibrahim, two of the kidnappers of the group from Lebanon.

A McCain spokesman said that no one who met with McCain identified themselves by either of those names.

So, if they don’t give us their real names, then he won’t be able to tell the “good guys” from the “bad guys”. Good to know. Darrell Issa might want to investigate when John McCain knew what he says he didn’t know, and when his office changed their talking points about the rebel photo.

McCain’s judgment has been off for some time now, but to put his word on the line that the US should intervene in Syria with military aid because we will know who the good guys are — and thus can be assured we are not arming the ‘bad guys’ — is a brash step even for him. To have possibly posed unknowingly with ‘bad guys’ points out just how wrong the Senator could be, and how dangerous it is to have an agenda unfettered by facts and gray areas.

This is but one reason why America rejected McCain as president in 2008. McCain never looks before he leaps (see Sarah Palin as VP).

Image: Handout/Reuter via Buzzfeed

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