Following his stop in Iraq, Barack Obama was interviewed about what he now believes his plan for troop withdrawal in Iraq should be.
If you want to see Barack in full living color (given what I see has happened on this site while I was away, I feel it necessary to point out that my use of the term “color” is not some subterranean racism that I harbor and therefore has nothing to do with Barack’s skin color but rather with seeing the full context of his comments, facial reactions, gestures, intonations etc….glad I got that covered!) give his explanation, you can do so here: http://www.breitbart.tv/?p=137053 . The essence of Barack’s comments were captured by his web site a few days ago:
A Responsible, Phased Withdrawal
Barack Obama believes we must be as careful getting out of Iraq as we were careless getting in. Immediately upon taking office, Obamawill give his Secretary of Defense and military commanders a new mission in Iraq: ending the war. The removal of our troops will be responsible and phased, directed by military commanders on the ground and done in consultation with the Iraqi government. Military experts believe we can safely redeploy combat brigades from Iraq at a pace of 1 to 2 brigades a month that would remove them in 16 months. That would be the summer of 2010 – more than 7 years after the war began.
Under the Obamaplan, a residual force will remain in Iraq and in the region to conduct targeted counter-terrorism missions against al Qaeda in Iraq and to protect American diplomatic and civilian personnel. He will not build permanent bases in Iraq, but will continue efforts to train and support the Iraqi security forces as long as Iraqi leaders move toward political reconciliation and away from sectarianism.
Some writers have been calling Barack’s recent update to his web site and his corresponding interview comments a flip flop. It’s not.
Take a look at this quote from Barack back in January of 2007; comments he made while the “surge” was being discussed:
The Obama plan, called the Iraq War De-escalation Act of 2007, would begin a troop withdrawal no later than May 1, 2007, but it includes several caveats that could forestall a clean break:
It would leave a limited number of troops in place to conduct counterterrorism activities and train Iraqi forces. And the withdrawal could be temporarily suspended if the Iraqi government meets a series of benchmarks laid out by the Bush administration. That list includes a reduction in sectarian violence; the equitable distribution of oil revenue; government reforms; and democratic, Iraqi-driven reconstruction and economic development efforts. Obama’s proposal also would reverse Bush’s troop-increase plan.
Notice that both in 2007 and today, Obama wanted a complete draw down of all combat troops. He also had provisions for leaving some special forces troops. At the tactical level, Obama hasn’t flip flopped. Obama’s plan as outlined on his web site this week looks very similar to the one he laid out in January of last year. But that is also his problem.
In January of 2007 the Surge was being debated. Had Obama had his way, the Surge would have never happened . Had Obama had his way and US troops been pulled out, LAST YEAR, we would likely be sitting here today not only with an Iran that was moving towards nuclear armament but also an Iran that would be establishing agency within Iraq. Obama may be right on the tactics…after the fact, but he was wrong on the strategy!
Here’s the thing. Many folks following the Presidential race, have gotten into debating whether Barack has flipped, flopped or contorted his position in some other fashion. I’ll admit, I personally find some of that to be an entertaining past time. However, the issue with Obama, yesterday, today and tomorrow is that he is wrong on the Strategy.
It’s fun amongst we conservatives to play “Whack an Obama” (again I feel the need to inject that the word “whack” is not generated by a subterranean racism looking to harm Obama, rather it is a reference to the carnival game often seen at Chuck E Cheese) for flipflopping. We just need to realize that if we’re attempting to address or persuade the audience who find him appealing, but are open to thinking about it, they find that kind of activity to be on the level of name calling. Have fun with the flip flops but make sure that at the core of the issue is the repetitive errancy that Obama has on every strategic position he has taken.