So the anointed savior of the American left is busy on his world tour this weekend, having already visited Kuwait and Afghanistan. Along for the ride are some of the leading lights of the American "news" media.
Before the acolytes of the anointed one boarded the plane with Obama representatives of John McCain's campaign handed reporters a briefing book, complete with Obama's faux presidential seal and containing 17 pages of suggested questions reporters who were truly interested in serving the public good as opposed to a liberal political agenda might want to ask.
Marc Ambinder has a copy of the briefing book and you can download it here.
Here are a sampling of questions from the briefing book that I'd like to see answered:More Questions For Obama
You said on “Meet the Press,” on May 4, 2008, “I think we have to be focused on Afghanistan.” So why is it that, according to The Hill newspaper, you have “missed two of three Senate Foreign Relations Committee hearings on Afghanistan since joining the panel” ? And why have you only now decided to visit Afghanistan for the first time after having been in office for more than three and a half years? Yet you’ve already visited Iraq once. Why aren’t you focused on Afghanistan in your work as a senator?
You’ve also talked about how critical it is to get our European allies to increase their contributions in Afghanistan. “As we step up our commitment,” you said on August 1, 2007, “our European friends must do the same, and without the burdensome restrictions that have hampered NATO's efforts.” Yet as chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Subcommittee on European Affairs since January 2007 you haven’t held a single hearing on this or any other subject. Why not? Are you putting your political ambitions above doing the job that the people of Illinois elected you to do?
You predicted that the surge in Iraq would fail. In January 2007 you said, “I am not persuaded that 20,000 additional troops in Iraq is going to solve the sectarian violence there. In fact, I think it will do the reverse.” You still deny that the surge has been a success, even if violence is down. “Iraq’s leaders have not made the political progress that was the purpose of the surge,” you claim. Yet you are now proposing a smaller surge in Afghanistan of two brigades, or about 8,000 troops. Why do you think a smaller surge will work in Afghanistan when you were convinced that a bigger surge would fail in Iraq?
At a presidential debate on February 21, 2008, you complained that our troops in Afghanistan “didn’t have enough ammunition, they didn’t have enough Humvees.” So why did you vote against giving them the funding they need to fight? On May 24, 2007, you were one of only 14 senators who voted against a $94.4 billion spending bill that included crucial funding for our troops not only in Iraq but also in Afghanistan.
You’ve said we need to “use the power of American diplomacy” and that “It's time to turn the page on the diplomacy of tough talk and no action.” Yet in the very same speech, you also said: “If we have actionable intelligence about high-value terrorist targets and President Musharraf won't act, we will.” Pakistan’s foreign minister branded your statement as “very irresponsible.” Why do you think it’s a good idea to bluster in public about taking military action on the soil of an American ally? And how do you think that such statements will help you to achieve your goal of initiating “a new relationship” with Pakistan “so that we can get better cooperation to hunt down al-Qaeda”?
There are more questions in the briefing book for Obama in Iraq. And I invite readers to add their own in the comments section.
But here are a few more I would like to ask:
You've repeatedly said that you never would have gone to war with Iraq. How would you explain to the mother searching the mass graves in Hila for her family (see below) or the couple who braved violence to vote with their children why they would have been better off with Saddam still in power?
Saddam Hussein gave the families of Palestinian suicide bombers $25,000 after a successful attack on Israeli Jews. How would you explain to the families who lost loved ones in those attacks that Saddam was not a threat and should not have been removed from power?
On June 4th you told the American Israeli Public Affairs Committee that "Jerusalem will remain the capital of Israel, and it must remain undivided." The next day you said the status of Jerusalem was subject to negotiation. Which is it?
In large part, World War II started because Western leaders were more interested in peace, or the absence of war, than they were in justice for the nation's Hitler invaded and the Jews he slaughtered by the millions. Will you visit a German Concentration Camp while you are there and learn more about the evil of appeasement?
(Electrified fence at Dachau. Photo by Mike's America)
President Bush has visited the American war graves in France to pay honor to their sacrifice and demonstrate an understanding of the cost that appeasement, or diplomacy without military force, brings. Will you also honor America's war dead so you may better understand that you can never negotiate with our enemies without preconditions and the military might to back up your agreements?