The Obama balloon pops and exposes the warmonger inside.

I realize I was getting just slightly caught up in the Obamaphoria, though I detest many of his stances on foreign policy.  I was glad this morning to feel unfazed to see that he had lost Texas and Ohio to Clinton.  Of course, I want neither of them in the oval office.  I think they would both be warmongers, just as much as McCain.  Obama may be slightly more dovish, but it would not be a statistically significant difference from the other two for me.  This was confirmed to me by a nice article in (of all publications) The American Conservative.  Don’t get me wrong.  I’m a Naderite through and through.  He’s the only one talking about truly removing our troops and ending our occupation and is the only one who wants to reverse our middle-east policy and deal fairly with Palestine.  However, the conservatives can sometimes be very perceptive.  Here’s a few excerpts of what this article said:

Obama’s campaign frequently invokes his 2002 “speech against the war,” but very rarely quotes directly from it. Why? Because this mysterious speech—which has become the stuff of legend in Obamaphilic circles, talked about but rarely read—is a pro-war tirade. Yes, Obama described the planned invasion of Iraq as “dumb” and “rash,” but his overriding concern—expressed repetitively throughout the speech—was that the Bush administration was damaging the legitimate case for American-made wars of intervention and potentially making it harder for future administrations (Democratic, for example) to send soldiers around the world to depose unfriendly regimes.

Obama gave the speech at an antiwar rally in Chicago in October 2002. Perhaps nervous about being seen at a gathering of critics of American military intervention, he straight away outlined his pro-war credentials: “Let me begin by saying that although this has been billed as an anti-war rally, I stand before you as someone who is not opposed to war in all circumstances.” He reiterated his non-opposition to war another four times in the 921-word speech.

Then Obama went to Washington, where he obediently voted to fund the war in Iraq and opposed the withdrawal of American troops. In 2004, he even talked about sending more troops to Iraq to stabilize the country—he had the idea of a surge before the Bushies did. When he and Hillary Clinton had a chance to enact Sen. Russ Feingold’s measure ordering Bush to withdraw most U.S. troops from Iraq by July 1, 2007, both voted no. Both senators also voted against a June 2006 amendment proposed by John Kerry for the redeployment of U.S. troops out of Iraq. It wasn’t until May 2007 that Clinton and Obama voted to cut off funds.

The article then stabs to the heart of the matter using Obama’s own words:

His main beef with the war in Iraq is not that it has failed in its stated objectives, fomented terror, and killed thousands, but rather that it has made the American people skeptical about military intervention. “There is one … place where our mistakes in Iraq have cost us dearly, and that is the loss of our government’s credibility with the American people,” he says. Citing a Pew Survey that found that 42 percent of Americans agree that the U.S. should “mind its own business internationally and let other countries get along the best they can on their own,” Obama retorted, “We cannot afford to be a country of isolationists right now. … We need to maintain a strong foreign policy, relentless in pursuing our enemies and hopeful in promoting our values around the world.”

Those foolishly cheering Obama’s promise to bring the war in Iraq to a “responsible end” should recognize why he is planning this: not to liberate Iraq but rather to liberate the interventionist project from the “Iraqi distraction” and rebuild America’s military sufficiently to send its forces to hotspots around the globe. In a long piece for Foreign Affairs in July/August 2007, he argued, “After Iraq, we may be tempted to turn inward. That would be a mistake. The American moment is not over, but it must be seized anew. We must bring the war to a responsible end and then renew our leadership—military, diplomatic, moral—to confront new threats and capitalize on new opportunities.” He calls for adding 65,000 soldiers to the Army and 27,000 to the Marine Corps and vastly expanding their mission.

“This century’s threats are at least as dangerous and in some ways more complex than those we have confronted in the past. They come from weapons that can kill on a mass scale and from global terrorists who respond to alienation or perceived injustice with murderous nihilism. They come from rogue states allied to terrorists and from rising powers that could challenge both America and the international foundation of liberal democracy.” Here, Obama the celebrated new Democrat sounds startlingly like the clapped-out dinosaurs of the neocon project. Like them, he compares today’s shoddy and stateless terror networks to the powerful regimes of fascist Germany and Soviet Russia. And like them he suggests that America is threatened by “weapons that can kill on a mass scale”—a dark hint at the much feared “dirty nuke,” the existence of which has never been established, either in al-Qaeda’s caves or in the nuclear facilities of Iran.

Besides plagiarizing the Bush regime’s book of fear-mongering, Obama embraces two other aspects of Bushite foreign policy: unilateralism and pre-emption. He argues, “No president should ever hesitate to use force—unilaterally if necessary—to protect ourselves and our vital interests when we are attacked or imminently threatened.”

So, as you can see, if you want more of the same, vote for the corporatocracy (Obama, Clinton, McCain… they’re all the same).  If you want real change, vote for Nader.


3 Responses to “The Obama balloon pops and exposes the warmonger inside.”

  1. 1 Connor March 5, 2008 at 10:33 pm

    He’s the only one talking about truly removing our troops and ending our occupation and is the only one who wants to reverse our middle-east policy and deal fairly with Palestine.

    Whoa there, Curtis. We both know that’s not true.

    Unless, by “only one”, you mean to imply “other than Ron Paul, of course”. 🙂

  2. 2 theradicalmormon March 5, 2008 at 10:59 pm

    Other than Ron Paul Amigo. I stand corrected.

  3. 3 Maximilian Forte July 24, 2008 at 9:12 pm

    Excellent post, and quite prescient.

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