McCain Attacks Obama’s Iraq and Afghanistan Strategy

ImageIn his weekly radio address, Republican presidential candidate John McCain strongly criticized Barack Obama for announcing his strategy for Iraq and Afghanistan before he visited the countries.

“My opponent, Senator Obama, announced his strategy for Afghanistan and Iraq before departing on a fact-finding mission that will include visits to both those countries. Apparently, he’s confident enough that he won’t find any facts that might change his opinion or alter his strategy. Remarkable,” McCain said.

He said this is similar to the mistake Obama made when he called the troop surge a failure, “This is similar to the mistake Senator Obama made when he confidently declared that the surge in Iraq could not possibly reduce sectarian violence there, and might well increase violence. He was so certain the surge would fail that he called for our troops to retreat as quickly as possible. Senator Obama’s previous statements against the surge have been hastily removed from his campaign website, in the audacious hope that no one would notice. But we all remember quite well that he said the surge would fail, and today we know that he was wrong.”

After outlining his strategy, McCain played the experience card, “In a time of war, the commander-in-chief’s job doesn’t get a learning curve. And if I have that privilege, I will bring to the job many years of military and political experience. It was this experience that guided me in the conviction that the surge in Iraq could turn things around, and clear a path to victory. And I believe with equal conviction that we can prevail in Afghanistan, assuring freedom to the Afghan people and greater security to the American people.”

The Obama campaign is doing something against John McCain that they didn’t do in the race against Hillary Clinton. They are changing their positions. I don’t think that they should have removed the troop surge info from his website. Every time they do something like this they give McCain ammo.

Judging the troop surge depends on what one defines as success. We were originally told that the surge was designed to give the Iraqi government time and space to get their act together, but this has not happened. The Iraqi government is still fractured, basic services still have not been restored completely to the people, and security, communication, and logistics for the military are still totally dependant on the U.S.

It is hard to believe that all it took was 28,000 troops to lower the violence in Iraq. Obama is making a huge mistake, by accepting McCain’s definition of success in Iraq. The only strength the McCain campaign has is his Commander in Chief image. From a strategic point of view, McCain needs to make this election about national security, or he will probably be routed. This is why Obama needs his current international trip to go well, in order to negate the only advantage that McCain appears to have with voters.

Text of McCain Radio Address

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