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McCain Blasts Obama Over Iran Talks


Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) speaks to members of the National Restaurant Association May 19, 2008, in Chicago. (Associated Press)

Updated 2:57 p.m.
By Peter Slevin
CHICAGO -- Accusing Sen. Barack Obama of "inexperience and reckless judgment," Sen. John McCain blasted his likely Democratic opponent on Monday for being willing to talk with Iranian leader Mahmoud Ahmadinejad without preconditions during his first year as president. McCain said such talks would only embolden "an implacable foe of the United States."

McCain tested an argument central to his general election strategy when he told members of the National Restaurant Association that Obama fails to understand "basic realities of international relations."

"It is likely such a meeting would not only fail to persuade him to abandon Iran's nuclear ambition, its support of terrorists and commitment to Israel's extinction," McCain said of Ahmadinejad, "It could very well convince him that those policies are succeeding in strengthening his hold on power, and embolden him to continue his very dangerous behavior."

Obama has stuck firmly to his position that the president should be willing to talk with America's enemies as part of a return to a more open and ambitious use of diplomacy. He cites President Nixon's opening to China and President Reagan's negotiations with Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev. He frequently quotes President Kennedy's position during the escalating nuclear arms race that the United States should be willing to meet with its adversaries.

"So let us begin anew, remembering on both sides that civility is not a sign of weakness and sincerity is always subject to proof," Kennedy said in his 1961 inaugural address. "Let us never negotiate out of fear, but let us never fear to negotiate."

In a speech in Billings, Mont., on Monday, Obama hit back sharply at McCain, accusing him of "using the same George Bush textbook" in which "anything but their failed cowboy diplomacy is called appeasement."

Obama called Iran "a grave threat" that has grown more dangerous because of the war in Iraq and what he called the Bush administration's avoidance of "direct diplomacy."

"For all their tough talk, one thing you have to ask yourself is what are McCain and Bush afraid of," Obama said. "Demanding that a country meets your conditions before you meet with them, that's not a strategy, it's naive, wishful thinking. I'm not afraid we'll lose some propaganda fight with a dictator. It's time to win those battles, because we've watched George Bush lose them year after year after year."

McCain added his remarks to a prepared speech on economic policy. Before he turned to a discussion of jobs, taxes and trade, he said he wanted to respond to comments about Iran made Sunday in Oregon by Obama.

"Senator Obama claimed that the threat Iran poses to our security is 'tiny' compared to the threat once posed by the former Soviet Union," McCain said. "Obviously, Iran isn't a superpower and doesn't possess the military power the Soviet Union had. But that does not mean that the threat posed by Iran is insignificant."

Obama did not use the word "tiny" to describe the threat, but to describe the size of Iran, Cuba and Venezuela compared with the former Soviet Union.

"Iran, Cuba, Venezuela -- these countries are tiny compared to the Soviet Union. They don't pose a serious threat to us the way the Soviet Union posed a threat to us," Obama had said.

"And yet we were willing to talk to the Soviet Union at the time when they were saying, 'We're going to wipe you off the planet.' And, ultimately, that direct engagement led to a series of measures that helped prevent nuclear war, and over time allowed the kind of opening that brought down the Berlin Wall."

Obama went on, "Iran, they spend one one-hundredth of what we spend on the military. If Iran ever tried to pose a serious threat to us, they wouldn't stand a chance. And we should use that position of strength that we have to be bold enough to go ahead and listen.

"That doesn't mean we agree with them on everything," Obama concluded. "We might not compromise on any issues, but at least we should find out other areas of potential common interest, and we can reduce some of the tensions that has caused us so many problems around the world."

McCain said the United States should "communicate with Iran our concerns about their behavior" at an "appropriate" diplomatic level. But, he said, "a summit meeting with the president of the United States, which is what Senator Obama proposes, is the most prestigious card we have to play in international diplomacy. It is not a card to be played lightly."

By Web Politics Editor  |  May 19, 2008; 12:58 PM ET
Categories:  Barack Obama  
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Comments

it appears the writer of this article is incapable of understanding the fundamental distinction between "negotiation" and "talking."

Who is editing this article?

Posted by: tim | May 23, 2008 2:18 PM | Report abuse

Frank Lee,
Israel will remain a "stinking corpse" as long as they continue their racist and fascist policies against Palestinians, Lebanese and Syrians. Stop stealing their land and murdering and starving their women and children. You don't like to be called stinking? Then go clean up your filthy act. Olmert is the real Hitler.

Posted by: HumanUnlikeYou | May 21, 2008 5:33 PM | Report abuse

Oil spiked $4 Friday on new evidence of Venezuela's deep involvement in terrorism. There's no glossing over such news: Hugo Chavez intends to destabilize the region. The U.S. will need to take action.

So long as America buys Venezuelan oil, Chavez will have the money to help FARC eventually destroy Colombia. He won't stop on his own, and the clandestine nature of his aid suggests he'll seek new ways to do it on the sly.

It's part of Chavez's strategy to use his petrodollars to take over the hemisphere -- or at least become its main power broker.

Meanwhile, Obama, who had a Che Guevara poster in one of his campaign offices doesn't mind if Cuba, with Chinese assistance, explores for oil 45 miles off Florida while U.S companies are blocked from further Gulf of Mexico production.

Posted by: Frank Lee | May 20, 2008 1:05 PM | Report abuse

When Ob wins the white house, you can bet there will be big time toasting and clinking of glasses In Pyong and Tehran. Four years of reprieve. Oh sure there will be the traditional 72 useless sanctions and threats of more sanctions. There's a sucker born every minute, unfortunately this ones gonna be the pres.

Posted by: Alex | May 20, 2008 12:56 PM | Report abuse

Frank Lee | May 20, 2008 10:30 AM
" ... In Friday's speech, Obama's proposed weapons against Iran were "deeper isolation and steeper sanctions." Would such tactics have changed Hitler's behavior in the 1930s? Why would it change that of another madman like Iran's Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, who calls Israel a "stinking corpse"...?

...

However hard Obama fights the label of appeaser, his inability to recognize evil disqualifies him from the presidency in wartime."
>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

You know - I find it interesting that people are so focused on Iran and Iraq and etc, but totally IGNORING the would-be-Hitler in Venezuela. Talk about "Inability to recognize evil!" This guy is "exporting revolution" to the tune of tens of millions of US Oil dollars and has even started his own version of Hitler Youth - RIGHT IN OUR BACK YARD, but we sit here and worry about Iran.
Why is that?

Many would say it's about oil - but I dispute that since the process of coal gasification can turn coal into oil, and the process yields high grade oil at a current cost of $55 a barrel. According to some sources (the Governor of Montana) we have enough coal to provide ALL of our nation's oil needs for 400 years without buying a DROP of the stuff from the Sand Fleas in Arabia or anywhere else - and that's without pumping even one drop of OUR oil resources!!! And when it comes to energy, we have LOTS of uranium ore buried under our soil.

So maybe it's not about oil/energy. Maybe it's more about a few loose canons running the oil companies that our Congress and Bush41 (and Bill Clinton) allowed to complete the vertical integration mergers and acquisitions that gave them an unchallenged defacto monopoly in the early '90s? And maybe it's about Bush 43 and the current Congress allowing them to continue to screw us and do nothing about it?

And maybe it's more about Oil's connections with the power elite - people like Cheney and Bush and our sitting Congress that plays along, rubber-stamping their demands, failing to impeach both Cheney and Bush for High Crimes and Misdemeanors, sitting on their hands - selling us down the river for a few dollars in "campaign contributions", and who send our children off to die in unnecessary wars without talking to the people we attack first? Maybe it's really all about the acquisition of POWER and about GREED?

And maybe, just maybe, McCain has abandoned the people he fought for over Vietnam for fame, or money, or whatever floats his boat?

All I know is both McCain and Clinton are part of the problem. I want to vote for someone who at least didn't HELP to get America in the trouble it is in today. There is absolutely NO way Obama could screw us worse than the Bushs and the Clintons and EVERY sitting member of Congress have.

TATBO - Throw ALL The Bastids Out!

Posted by: nofluer | May 20, 2008 12:00 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: Ricahrd | May 20, 2008 10:24 AM
"So Obama's endorsement by Hamas is not all that surprising. The man who wants to be president has a consistent and disturbing pattern of associations with influence peddlers, racist preachers, terrorist professors and people who wouldn't mind if Israel just went away."
>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

I believe in Politics those types of people are referred to as "the usual suspects?" ;-D

Posted by: nofluer | May 20, 2008 11:25 AM | Report abuse

In slamming President Bush and John McCain, Barack Obama seemed to follow political consultant Jim Carville's rule: "You've got to be willing to fight." But what Obama is defending is indefensible.

Obama's Web site says he will negotiate with terrorists. "Obama is the only major candidate who supports tough, direct presidential diplomacy with Iran without preconditions," it states.

In Friday's speech, Obama's proposed weapons against Iran were "deeper isolation and steeper sanctions." Would such tactics have changed Hitler's behavior in the 1930s? Why would it change that of another madman like Iran's Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, who calls Israel a "stinking corpse"...?

Iran may be blowing up U.S. troops in Iraq and sponsoring terrorist groups such as Hamas and Hezbollah, but what Obama worries about is that "Osama bin Laden is still at large sending out videotapes with impunity." Since 9/11, how many al-Qaida videotapes have crashed into crowded buildings on U.S. soil?

However hard Obama fights the label of appeaser, his inability to recognize evil disqualifies him from the presidency in wartime.

Posted by: Frank Lee | May 20, 2008 10:30 AM | Report abuse

Barack Obama would like us to believe that the Rev. Jeremiah Wright who ranted anti-American profanities at the National Press Club was not the man he saw from the pews of his church for two decades.

He'd also have us believe that Weatherman terrorist bomber William Ayers, who played host to his first fundraiser and with whom he would later serve on a board, is just a "guy in the neighborhood."

Similarly, Obama would have us believe he doesn't accept the recent endorsement of his candidacy by Ahmed Yousef of the terrorist organization Hamas. John McCain, he said, had "lost his bearings" for asserting, "If Sen. Obama is favored by Hamas, I think people can make judgments accordingly."

Obama told CNN that McCain's remarks were "offensive" and that it was "disappointing" his Republican rival would engage "in that kind of smear . . . particularly since my policy toward Hamas has been no different than his."

Oh, really? If McCain's remarks were a "smear," senator, why did you tell the Atlantic magazine:

"It's conceivable that there are some in the Arab world who say to themselves, 'This is a guy who spent some time in the Muslim world, has a middle name of Hussein and appears more worldly and has called for talks with people, and so he's not going to be engaging in the same sort of cowboy diplomacy as George Bush." Except these people launch rockets at Israel and oppose its existence.

By the way, isn't it funny how Obama can mention his middle name in a national forum when convenient, but if a Republican uses it, it's racist and offensive? Imagine the reaction if McCain had mentioned his legal name was Barack Hussein Obama or had made the above comments about Obama. When a warm-up speaker at a McCain event said "Barack Hussein Obama" repeatedly, media hell broke loose.

So Obama's endorsement by Hamas is not all that surprising. The man who wants to be president has a consistent and disturbing pattern of associations with influence peddlers, racist preachers, terrorist professors and people who wouldn't mind if Israel just went away.

As John McCain says, the American people should make their judgments accordingly.

Posted by: Ricahrd | May 20, 2008 10:24 AM | Report abuse

Keep your friends close and your enemies closer.
Throughout history this has been a tested and proven art of effective diplomacy. Most of 9/11 highjackers were Saudi, however Bush still hold hands with the Saudi rulers, because he has to keep the oil flowing. The best thing the USA can do to ensure it's standing in the world is to talk to its enemies, with no preconditions. You have to know want your enemy wants before you can come to a fair compromise.
When you break this down to its basics:
"I won't talk to you unless u do this for me." It's quite immature and just plain silly.
If we just talk to Iran, hey we might be able to become great friends by investing in the development of their oil fields, nuclear plants and gas fields.
You cannot impose your will on other countries just because they don't agree, that is called dictatorship. Does the great USA want to go down in history as the second Rome, the great dictator and imperialist or the greatest peacemaker in history?

Posted by: db | May 20, 2008 3:01 AM | Report abuse

By the way, I'd like to hear opinions about the fascinating political gamesmanship here, using the metaphor of a boxing match.

Bush pulls McCain into the corner by raising the diplomacy question during a speech in Israel. McCain, having tied himself to Bush's Iraq policy, has no choice but to go along with Bush. Seeing himself at a disadvantage, McCain tries to punch his way out of the corner. Unfortunately, he doesn't have much in his punches, mostly fine parsing of Obama's words taken out of context.

Obama seems eager to pummel McCain over the issue, not only because Obama has the advantage in the argument, but also because he can demonstrate strength and seasoning, which also defeats the Republican narrative that Obama is weak and immature.

Great fight, eh?

Posted by: Scott in NC | May 20, 2008 2:13 AM | Report abuse

nofluer: The point of my post was that Bush and now, regrettably, McCain have stuck with the Cheney plan, with minimal regard for the facts on the ground and no regard for the wishes of the American people (Cheney: "So?")

I avoided the question of "why did we fight this insane war?" because I wanted to stick with documented facts, and we can only guess at the answer to the "why" questions. I agree the arguments in other posts are persuasive, though we are still left to speculate, especially with Cheney guarding the records of his meetings with the oil execs so jealously. McCain gave us more circumstantial evidence with that gaffe about never having to go to war for oil *again*.

So, I will concede the point regarding the "why" question until someone has enough backbone to compel those Washington scoundrels to open up the records that we're entitled to see.

Posted by: Scott in NC | May 20, 2008 1:25 AM | Report abuse

nofleur writes: "... a possible REAL reason why we're there - it would be the one that has to do with the switch of some of the OPEC countries from selling their oil for US Dollars, to Euros & etc."

You know, check what the analysts are saying is the true value of a barrel of oil. I think it may have been a Citigroup (???) analyst that said recently the true value is around $98 per barrel, up from the initial $80 estimate.

Convert that to Euros. $80 x $1.55 (euro value vs. dollar).

ANSWER ... $124. And what is oil currently trading at? Around $127. To reach the estimated $98 equivalent, oil would have to be selling at $152 per barrel. I figure that will happen by the end of summer.

In short, oil is already trading in Euros by way of the market's manipulation of the price per barrel. So much for a war / occupation of Iraq.

Posted by: peanut butter jelly | May 20, 2008 1:16 AM | Report abuse

Scott in NC - excuse me, but how do cheney's calculations of being met with flower tossing citizens square with being grounded in reality?

First - Neither Chaney nor Rummy had ANY meaningful experience in ground military operations - yet they chose to micro-manage the combat loading of the supplies, and Rummy told Zinni (and Franks?) how many troops he would need after, IIRC, both of them told him he'd need at MINIMUM 400,000 boots on the ground to secure the country.

The only "local" they listened to was a guy (Chalabi) who hadn't been incountry for YEARS! and was a known liar and grifter. Where's te reality in THAT?

Etc etc etc.

If you scan back down the comments, you'll find a fairly reasonable comment about a possible REAL reason why we're there - it would be the one that has to do with the switch of some of the OPEC countries from selling their oil for US Dollars, to Euros & etc.

May be right - maybe not. But it makes more sense than WMDs (especially after the US PROVIDED Saddam with WMD dual use materials, probably KNOWING he was gassing the Kurds.)

Posted by: nofluer | May 20, 2008 12:16 AM | Report abuse

"Any alliance whose purpose is not the intention to wage war is senseless and useless."

--Adolf Hitler

Posted by: John HITLER McCain | May 20, 2008 12:09 AM | Report abuse

I hear a lot of nice talking in these comments. Talking about calculations that suggest that you still have potent ion and money to buy the things you want. That may be true for the brutal part of the western hemisphere people. But there is another problem rising at the horizon, a large crowd is growing larger and larger, the victims of foreclosures and the people that are laid of, the unemployed reserve army Karl Marx talked about. About 12 percent of the western hemisphere population. This group is growing pretty rapidly and has become already a power that changed the American government. The establishment reacts with hiring more policemen to keep control over the unhappy masses. In the end of this ongoing difference in income, a revolution will be inevitable. The new rich of today will be mass slaughtered within this decade, and a new sort of communism will grow from within the peoples of the western hemisphere to cope with the problems of mondialization of labor and trade. This development will give a new political entity that will take over the one we have now, that of the grabbers. An interesting development which I will see grow, but with my age don't have to live in, god thanks.

Posted by: jwh | May 19, 2008 11:53 PM | Report abuse

This is an argument about negotiating. Sort of by definition negotiating means talking to your enemies. How is this in any way a sign of weakness or appeasement? It's only weakness or appeasement if YOU GIVE AWAY things you SHOULD fight for. Kennedy negotiated with Khruschev and not only got the Soviets to take their nuclear missiles out of Cuba, but in the bargain saved the world from mutual nuclear destruction.

This Bush/McCain stunt is just more of the same double speak and "framing" the GOP playbook has called for since the Moral Majority days. Orwellian sloganeering that masks the truth. They seem to think we are all still dining on Freedom Fries. Ignorance is strength.

Posted by: snodman | May 19, 2008 11:52 PM | Report abuse

Ok, you want grounded in reality? The Cheney plan was to win Iraq, where we be greeted as liberators, which would free us up move on to Operation Iranian freedom. But Cheney's grand plan had a few hiccups:
* we continue to be pinned down in Iraq
* 70% of the American people caught on to the fact that our pretense for going to war in Iraq was an illusion (at best) or a lie (at worst)
* our military is stretched so thin that Bush and McCain don't want to give our Vets decent physical and mental health care for fear that they won't re-up
* the war in Iraq has cost us $1T (didn't Mr. Wolfowitz tell us that Iraqi oil revenue would cover our cost?)
* our own NIE says that Iran is not developing nuclear weapons, thus undermining our pretense for invading Iran (by the way, I can pronounce the word "nuclear" correctly, unlike the current POTUS)
* Pres. Bush and Sen. McCain never got the memo about the NIE, or if so, didn't read it

And we can find all this information freely available from our own government sources, no liberal MSM required!

Posted by: Scott in NC | May 19, 2008 11:43 PM | Report abuse

Oh - and for those who think that Obama is a babe in the woods, you should perhaps recall that his political career was forged in the foundry of Chicago's "Daily Machine" - very similar to the Kansas City "Pendergast Machine" that forged Harry S Truman. With training and success in that environment, there aren't a lot of world leaders who could hold their own against such a politician.

And although the Clintons tried to make it a negative, Obama also was involved in helping the ghetto people to get decent housing from slum lords and others who were not amenable to giving it - surely comparable to discussing nukes with President Ahmadinejad?
:-)

Posted by: nofluer | May 19, 2008 11:27 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: alex

They are going to eat obama's lunch.

------------

And his breakfast waffles too!

Barry Hussein doesn't understand that the Soviet Union did not have a death wish?
That their military and gov't weren't comprised of suicidal killers engaged in jihad? Didn't lop off the heads of
civilians (like the journalist) and
videotape it for recruiting purposes?

Osamobama reacted to Bush's description of
appeasers so defensively because the shoe fit. He is a pathetic sell-out to Soros,
moveon types. Out of one side of his mouth
he says Jimmah Carter shouldn't have met
with Hamas, and out the other side says
Iran isn't so bad and sure I'd talk with
the cretin president.

Keep fighting Hillary! The more Osamobama
speaks, the more he shows what a slime he
he really is.

Posted by: Typical White Person | May 19, 2008 11:24 PM | Report abuse

Ahh... I see the night shift is out... as is logic and knowledge of how the world works (in real life - not according to someone's propaganda minister or favorite "news" station.) Must be a full moon...

I'd answer some of the silliness y'all have been posting, but most of it doesn't make a whole lot of sense, is not grounded in reality, and you prob'ly wouldn't understand the responses because you don't know the basics of world politics and economics.

Go to school. Get an education; but mostly LEARN TO THINK FOR YOURSELF!

Posted by: nofluer | May 19, 2008 11:18 PM | Report abuse

I suggest all y'all who think Iran is going to launch hundreds of ICBMs at any moment should get your stuff and crawl down in your fallout shelters now. We'll leave the power on so you can watch Fox News 24x7. You can come back out after November. If you want to stay down there until there's another GOP President, that's fine, but bring some extra grub -- it may be a while.

Posted by: Scott in NC | May 19, 2008 11:04 PM | Report abuse

The idea of the United Nations the bond between countries in the Western hemisphere is appears to be fake. Different views on how to master and profit from this world has weakened the western union. We put too much energy in talking. China, India and Oilrabia profit from this attitude. But nobody wants to give in on salary, luxury etc. The only choice for the western hemisphere that is left is become outlaws and mass produce weapons to help us get what we want. In stead of making friends all over the world, we western hemisphere peoples are doing our utmost to do the opposite by considering the rest of the world as terrorists. We already see the signs on the wall, whoever goes to oilrabia asking for oil is turned down. Attacking Iran want give cheaper oil for the western hemisphere peoples. What we must do is drastically adjust to a new situation in which salaries should be quartered, prices of immobiles en ground should be reevaluated and anew set to an acceptable price. Because of the greediness of the western peoples the contrary will happen. End of this song is the total collapse of property prices in the western hemisphere. A worldwide war would be seen as an option to overcome a downfall like this. It is my view that humanity is a mistake of the cosmos we only must hope that the total destruction of mankind does not take to long.

Posted by: jwh | May 19, 2008 10:57 PM | Report abuse

They are going to eat obama's lunch.

Posted by: alex | May 19, 2008 10:50 PM | Report abuse

Obama scares Americans and his foreign policy scares them even more.

Obama could release nuclear energy technology to Iran who could sell it to Egypt, Syria, Jordan and other Middle Eastern countries.

Obama still does not have the nomination because he scares a lot of voters. Now Jewish voters are terrified about Obama.

Posted by: Grace | May 19, 2008 10:47 PM | Report abuse

does anyone know what obama would say when he meets Kim Il or Ahmed ?"nice weather we're having...how about those yankees? "They are going to eat him alive.Obama comes in with his tail between his legs.Its gonna be a good propaganda day in Iran and North Korea.Obama will stumble into a war. Evan Joe Biden ,head of the foreign relations committee said Ob made a mistake when he announced these meetings.Lefties will get some sense knocked into them after NK , Iran run roughshod over a fresh faced newbie Obama.

Posted by: SNAPPLECAT | May 19, 2008 10:42 PM | Report abuse

Right. Obama is naive and inexperienced.

So, Mr. McCain, by ruling out any kind of diplomatic discussion or conversation with an enemy, what other options do you propose to forge a peace?

Will someone please ask him this question?

Because the only option I came come up with is a military option: Force. And we know where Ws foreign policy has landed us these past five years.

Posted by: TrL | May 19, 2008 10:33 PM | Report abuse

Of course we negotiate with terroists. "surrender or die" is a negotiating tactic. Even McCains position is a negotiation with terroists. We wont't talk to them until they recognize Israel and stop the violance. We negotiatied with Japan, you unconditionally surrender and we will stop bombing your cities. Libia, IRA.... Who are the idiots and fools (the MSM) who have not yet called McCain on this.

Posted by: DC aka la la land | May 19, 2008 10:14 PM | Report abuse

McCain is a North Vietnemese Manchurian candidate. According to these very reliable blogs, McCain was cloned with dna from a rat's intestine, and sent back to the U.S. to run for President.

Posted by: pubichaironmycokecan | May 19, 2008 9:39 PM | Report abuse

Yeah, Senator John. You're right about Obama being reckless for actually stating that he would TALK to the Iranian president. What a fool! To actually communicate! My god, how reckless can you get!! And you've also already shown how intelligent, restrained and sophisticated your approach would be for dealing with Iran..... ba, ba, ba, bomb, bomb Iran. Remember singing that song, John? While kissing the Shrub's a$$? You are a stupid neocon moron who brings the word "reckless" to a whole new level.

Posted by: Patrick Henry | May 19, 2008 9:37 PM | Report abuse

Here we go again with MCBUSH. If you liked Bush's domestic agenda and his failed foreign policies you are going to love John MCain. MCCAIN running for Bush's third term

Posted by: Johnny K | May 19, 2008 9:26 PM | Report abuse

Remember when Nelson Mandela was a "terrorist?"
Remember when Gerry Adams was a "terrorist?"
Would you like some more names?

Posted by: gcubitt | May 19, 2008 9:19 PM | Report abuse

Commonwealth countries spell funny. ;-D

I'm not really worried about China. Even if they buy all of the US Iron mining companies in the US - and bring their own workers over to mine them, those folks gotta eat, they gotta have a place to get out of the cold, etc. The US/Australia will make money off of the Chinese expansion because, just as BonzoBucks are only redeemable here, your DingoBucks are ONLY redeemable at Kangaroo Jack's in the outback and ONLY when you buy genuine woolaroo!! ;-D

Trade is ALWAYS a two way street. It may go one way for a while, but then it HAS to go back the other way! And a truth - the most prosperous nations/city-states in history have had absolutely NO trade barriers!!!

Then there's that - ummm - OTHER thing about China. The dirty little secret that they're not talking about.

(Whispering now) Y'see mate, they've gone and buggered themselves politically and they don't even seem to know it, or if they do, they haven't the slightest what to do about it! They went and allowed their peasants to create a middle class!!! You can't have a totalitarian State with a strong middle class. And once that middle class starts driving the economy - the Mr I'm In Charge Fearless Leader has to get his bum into the back seat! Eh? (End whispering)

So - I'm having a GREAT deal of fun watching China these days! ;-D

Posted by: nofluer | May 19, 2008 9:01 PM | Report abuse

the smart lead with diplomacy .... then we have McCrazy flip flop McCain.

"The first thing that I would do is call in John Kerry, Bob Kerrey, Joe Biden, Zbigniew Brzezinski, Henry Kissinger, Dick Lugar, Chuck Hagel, and several others and say, 'We've got to get foreign policy, national security issues back on track.'" (When asked the first thing he would do if elected President, 3/00)

"Well, it's common knowledge and has been reported in the media that Al Qaeda is going back into Iran and receiving training and are coming back into Iraq from Iran. That's well known. And it's unfortunate." -before correcting himself by saying Iran was training "extremists," not Al Qaeda

"There are neighborhoods in Baghdad where you and I could walk through those neighborhoods today." --prior to visiting a Baghdad market while being flanked by 22 soldiers, 10 armored Humvees, and two Apache attack helicopters

wonder if he still feels the same.??

"We are paying a very heavy price for the mismanagement -- that's the kindest word I can give you -- of Donald Rumsfeld, of this war. The price is very, very heavy and I regret it enormously. I think that Donald Rumsfeld will go down in history as one of the worst secretaries of defense in history."(John McCain
On Iraq War, February 2007)

Posted by: Ripley | May 19, 2008 8:13 PM | Report abuse

Nofluer, I got a greal laugh out of your BonzoBucks - how true that is... (GRIN). And yes, I'm an Aussie.

Regarding gold, sure it's a commodity like everything else and changes value depending on how much anybody is willing to pay for it - HOWEVER - gold is an internationally recognised item of valuta, which means that it does have intrinsic value in literally every nation on the planet, unlike the BonzoBucks that can only be spent in BonzoLand, er, sorry, the United States of America, for ever-diminishing value.

The problem with handing those BonzoBucks to China all those years is that sure, the USA benefited all that time by getting cheap Chinese goods. But the price is about to be paid in a very damaging way and we have suffered this in Australia already, but it's too late for us.

Back in the 1950s and 1960s, Australia had a massive manufacturing infrastructure. We made radios and TVs, whitegoods, clothing, cars and literally everything we needed. But then the Japanese and Chinese started making those goods for a fraction of the price of Aussie-made products, so instead of insulating this nation from cheap slave-labour made products, we let them flood into Australia and we paid the price by watching our entire industrial base go bankrupt and export hundreds of thousands of Aussie jobs to Asia.

Now Australia has no whitegoods industry, not one TV or radio is made here, virtually all clothing comes from China and other Asian nations and luckily, all we have is an abundance of raw materials. However, China is looking to buy our big resources companies such as BHP and Rio Tinto, so eventually if this occurs, Australia will be owned lock, stock and barrel by the Chinese. They didn't have to invade us - they just used our greed and stupidity to buy us out. Aussies used to look at Chinese as uneducated coolies - now we are going to be their waiters and busboys.

Why I am saying this is that the same thing is happening to the USA. China now holds 1.3 TRILLION dollars of US debt, cheap Chinese goods are flowing into the USA while American jobs are going down the gurgler. Look at the job losses in the US car industry for starters - GM and Ford are going broke. How many sneakers are being manufactured in the good old USA? None, I bet.

Nofluer, I've got a fair idea of how this game works. You are right about the BonzoBucks and I had a good giggle over it, but the bottom line hasn't changed. Notwithstanding Bretton Woods, BonzoBucks and other fiscal machinations, the fact is that the US dollar is going to become just another worthless fiat currency if this situation continues and the Petrodollar scam comes to an end.

Posted by: Ziggy | May 19, 2008 7:47 PM | Report abuse

Ziggy:

Oops - forgot something that may be of interest... the mega-corps that off-shored all of their manufacturing capacity? They're about go get it shoved up their dorsal orifices as it becomes CHEAPER to manufacture in the US - and we make better quality stuff, too.

It's already happening in the Call Center industry.

I don't think Bush really understands all of this - but believe it or not, he has been GOOD for the long term health of the US economy - again just like the Marshal plan. Although I personally revile him (especially for the violation of the Geneva Accords), history will probably be much kinder to him than we are being.

Posted by: nofluer | May 19, 2008 7:32 PM | Report abuse

"Allow the president to invade a neighboring nation, whenever he shall deem it necessary to repel an invasion, and you allow him to do so whenever he may choose to say he deems it necessary for such a purpose - and you allow him to make war at pleasure."

--Abraham Lincoln

Posted by: AL | May 19, 2008 7:21 PM | Report abuse

Ziggy! You don't REALLY understand how it works. You're right on the EDGE of understanding, tho.

You got it EXACTLY correct when you said the dollars have to be honored (are you a Brit or a Canuk? Aussie maybe?).

But we are not on the gold standard, and besides, like dollars, gold is just another commodity. It's only worth what someone's willing to pay for it with something else in a mutually agreed upon exchange (aka Fair Market Value) So it's REALLY doubtful we could or would pay off the debt with gold.

We're currently "monetizing" the debt to beat the band. That means if we borrowed $100 in 2000, after cumulative inflation between 2000 and 2007 (40% devaluation) and the approx 10% devaluation since the first of the year (do the words "free fall" mean anything to you?) we now only owe about $50 in real value. Do you follow that? Great! So we've already paid off half of our national debt in just 8 years! Wooo!

What this means is that we've been handing China BonzoBucks! BonzoBucks are an imaginary currency (I just made it up). If you want BonzoBucks you have to get them from me. No one else has them UNLESS they got them from me. And although they may develop a secondary market of collectors, they ain't worth squat anywhere else!

UNLESS you bring them to MY store where I'll let you pay for up to 20% of your purchases from ME with BonzoBucks! So you're going to bring them to me, spend 80 cents on the dollar in US Currency on merchandise and 20 BonzoBucks cents on the dollar to pay for it.

NOW - what happens to MY STORE's SALES??? For every BonzoBuck tendered, I actually make a gross sale of 80 cents. Right? My sales revenues are going to go CRAZY! I don't even have to SELL BonzoBucks at a discount - I can GIVE them away and STILL make money!

So the US will be HAPPY to redeem the US dollars when presented by China for GOODS - N'est ce pas? And the US Trade deficit will do WHAT? And US Manufacturing and GDP will do WHAT? JUST LIKE WHAT HAPPENED AFTER THE MARSHAL PLAN!!! (

There's an unfortunate fly in the ointment, however. We happy few US citizens will have to undergo a BRIEF PERIOD of Austerity Measures to fight the coming HYPERINFLATION! Sucks to be so smart, huh.

(Independent economists currently estimate REAL inflation of the US Dollar at around 10 to 15% per year.)

Posted by: nofluer | May 19, 2008 7:21 PM | Report abuse

Where did shrink2 go to???

Posted by: JakeD | May 19, 2008 7:19 PM | Report abuse

JakeD, I'd love to answer your question about McCain, but I'm an Aussie and have not been following the finer details of McCain's or Obama's funding. We Aussies do follow American news with interest, but we have our own pack of idiots in government with whom we we have to contend.

The morons in our electorate have just put a socialist government into power for the third time in our history and already we are seeing the effects of their semi-Marxist philosophies. Twice before, those Socialists brought Australia to tbe brink of Banana Republicanism and I fear that this time it is heading slowly in the same direction, after 11 years of fantastic fiscal management by the Conservatives.

But this proves that democracy doesn't work, because morons who get the privilege and power to vote have no idea for who or what they cast their ballots for. Here is something for you to do - it's an eye-opener. I've done this here in Australia.

Walk into any bar and ask any of the barflies whether they have read the GOP or Democrat manifestos, whether they have analysed the platforms of the presidential candidates and actually understand their fiscal policies for the nation and the actual meanings and reasons for foreign policy stances.

I found that in Australia, about one adult in every thousand had any concept of what our two major political parties stood for. The rest were completely ignorant of virtually everything tangible, but just swallowed the crap that they were fed on TV every night.

I'd rather have a benign dictatorship running Australia, because one smart guy with a proven track record in big business and realpolitik, who knows what he is doing and hopefully is far too wealthy to be bought off by anybody, would run the nation far better than a gang of inept, corrupt, power-hungry, self-serving bastards who lie to the stupid electorate and get elected on the basis of those lies, then proceed to wreck the nation until the next bunch of corrupt bastards are elected to do it all again.

The USA would be better served to have Bill Gates as Life President than that bunch of candidates you're stuck with.

Posted by: Anonymous | May 19, 2008 7:17 PM | Report abuse

dcwsano:

Did you see McCain on "Saturday Night Live"?

Posted by: JakeD | May 19, 2008 7:16 PM | Report abuse

Listening to the good people of Culpeper, I sympathize with those that have lost their homes and say that 'rent' is a four letter expletive.

I found it hard to understand one Culpeper lady, a minister with the local Baptist church. This lady made it clear she could only vote for a Republican because it was Bush who bought God into the White House.

How can she reconcile the slaughter and torture in Iraq and the lack of thought for people's lives and caring and wanting to help when the levees broke. How can she think this man Bush is close to a God who has taught us to love, understand and think unselfishly of others much less fortunate than ourselves.

I believe we must work hard to break the spell these people, ( yes we know that rapture and spirituality can also deceive), break this terrible spell many Republicans have succumbed to.

It is our duty to help these people to know right and wrong.

Obama must now concentrate his policies on helping ordinary people, farmers and small business owners recover from the massive rise in energy costs, mortgages and supermarket prices. Obama must have a firm, clear plan how he will recover America.

America has done so well in the last 100 years, when she is struggling, the world will struggle with her.

Posted by: Mark Golding | May 19, 2008 7:09 PM | Report abuse

Earth to McSame supporters:

Being around for a long, long time does not make you qualified to be president. It just make you an old coot. There is nothing wrong with being old, only with being out of touch.

Posted by: dcwsano | May 19, 2008 7:08 PM | Report abuse

Obama: The Con
Obama has fixed this race by deception to Americans. He has lied about his background and his connections with radical, Anti American, anti semitic leaders until just a few months ago. He has hidden his relationship with Reverend Wright,, Farrakhan, the "Nation of Islam' leader, Syrian Criminal, Anton Rezko and his Black Liberation Theology since the beginning of the primary. Most of my community have changed their minds about this man and will not vote for him in the general election because of this lies and deception

This whole election process, especially not seating Florida and Michigan with almost 400 delegates, is a disgrace for the American people. John King keep showing his map with only 48 states. These maps and math are convincing superdelegates that Obama is in the lead. There are 50 states in our country. Obama has done everything in his power to convince everyone that there is only 48 by not having a revote or even seating them. The postponement of seating these state is a deliberate act. Senator Obmama is deliberately postponing this decision to brag about his lead.

For those people that were too young to know President Clinton.He is not liked, but loved through out the world. Our country was thriving, the era was "upbeat" and there was peace in our country.

There is no way to compare "Bush" and Clinton. The Clintons were the BEST!
The media has painted President Clinton as a racist in spite of the fact that he has an office in Harlem His years in office were spent fighting for civil rights and for the underdog, especially African American.
The coverage of this campaign is disgraceful in this regard above all. African Americans should be ashamed of how they have treated all of the Clintons.

Trinity United Church of Christ, Tony Rezko the Syrian Criminal, Louis Farrakhan, William Ayers a 60's radical that bombed government buildings and Muslim upbringing should be a wake up call to Democrats. Please don't blow the change with a man that has not only little known about these issues before the first primary and kept it away from the media until the end of this race. Senator Obama will lose this election if he's the nominee. Lastly and something that needs to be evaluated is the race issue; There will never be a fair an accurate poll determining how many people will really vote for Obama. McCain will win if the Democrats don't wake up.

On Fox News Sunday, Williams claimed Obama's Muslim father "presents a problem"
On the January 21 edition of Fox Broadcasting Co.'s Fox News Sunday, National Public Radio senior correspondent and Fox News contributor Juan Williams noted that Sen. Barack Obama (D-IL) "comes from a father who was a Muslim" and added that "given that we're at war with Muslim extremists, that presents a problem."

How much more bad news do we need to know about a Democrat candidate before we realize that this man is laughing up his sleeve at all of us.
Wake up Democrats. We can not and will not win this election unless we run from Obama and start supporting the Clintons.

Please keep the unsettling issues pertaining to Senator Obama in the forefront.
There are too many issues surrounding this man that disturbs many Americans and believe me, there will be many more to come.


Posted by: Al from NJ | May 19, 2008 7:06 PM | Report abuse

dcwsano:

OH MY GOSH! A logical post! (Are you sure you belong here?)
;-D

Posted by: nofluer | May 19, 2008 7:02 PM | Report abuse

Nofluer, you are absolutely correct about the US dollar apart from one thing. The US dollar may theoretically be backed by "the full faith and credit of the United States of America", but in the world of realpolitik, the US dollar has to have some intrinsic value apart from hollow American promises.

Thus NYMEX and IPE were established to force energy-seeking nations to only be able to use US dollars to buy oil and the scam was up and running. However with oil producers bypassing these exchanges, the scam is slowly coming to an end.

As for China having to accept US paper money for its treasury bond holdings, that's not necessarily true. Because the US dollar is allegedly backed by alleged good faith and credit, the USA has to be seen to honour its debts by offering tangible exchange for those Treasury bonds, such as hard goods or gold. The second that the USA reneges on recompensing its creditors in any way, the nations that hold US debt will unload those US dollars and get whatever they can for them and never hold them again. However this will bankrupt the USA on the spot, making the Great Depression of the 1030s look like a picnic by comparison.

So Nofluer, you make some valid points, but you have to realise that "the full faith and credit of the United States of America" is a lot less than it used to be, and is shrinking daily as the rest of the world wakes up to the US Petrodollar scam. This is easily observed by the diminishing value of the US dollar against other currencies.

I repeat myself - US citizens would be wise to start hoarding as much gold as they can lay their hands on, because once a few US creditors start divesting themselves of US currency and bonds, the US dollar will go into freefall.

Posted by: Ziggy | May 19, 2008 7:01 PM | Report abuse

ME? REASON with someone?

Why, that'd take all the FUN out of these things. I'm a wild-eyed rototiller totin', gardinin' fool! Who needs nukes? If any were foolish enough to invade MY part of the world, I'd hide in a tree and drop rotten tomatoes on 'em - they'd not soon be back, I'll tell ya!

Posted by: nofluer | May 19, 2008 6:59 PM | Report abuse

Can someone name one presidential nominee who lost the election because he was accused of bring inexperienced? The issue doesn't fly. The differences between McSame and Obama involve approach and different world views, not experience.

Since when is the ability to handle a crisis is measured by the number of years spent as a Washington pol inside the beltway?

Claiming "experience" is just another way of admitting you plan to keep doing things the way they have always been done.

There is zero correlation between length of experience in government and success as President. Some of the greatest failures as President had the most government experience, such as Hoover and Nixon, and to a lesser extent, Lyndon Johnson and Bush Sr. All had failed Presidencies.

Posted by: dcwsano | May 19, 2008 6:57 PM | Report abuse

Correction - Breton Woods was in 1944/45 - '71.

Nixon abrogated the agreement in 1971, ending the gold convertibility of the US Dollar and essentially establishing the Dollar as the basis for trade in the world economy.

sorry 'bout the err.

Posted by: nofluer | May 19, 2008 6:54 PM | Report abuse

Ziggy:

I'll gladly allow Nofluer this opportunity to "reason" with you ...

shrink2:

Yes, I said that I want more of the same. Especially more Supreme Court Justices like Roberts and Alito. Now that I answered your question, care to answer mine:

"McCain raised $8 million in one NYC fundraiser recently. But, he would gladly stop doing that for his own campaign IF Obama kept his word and accepted public financing for the general election campaign. Do you think that will happen?"

Posted by: JakeD | May 19, 2008 6:47 PM | Report abuse

Ziggy dude...
"...such as China are getting the idea of divesting themselves of US dollars by demanding redemption - however, the USA is too far in debt to be able to buy those dollars back, thus would be bankrupt. ..."
>>>>>>>>>>>>

Ummmm sounds good but there's a tiny flaw in the batter. The US dollar isn't BACKED by anything. When Breton Woods took us off the gold standard (Nixon? Was it '72?) the US Dollar became a free-floating currency backed by "the full faith and credit of the United States of America" - which means that if you believe it has value, and the US can still borrow money, then the dollar is good. Otherwise it makes pretty good washable toilet paper after the crispness is gone.

So - the idea that China might want to "redeem" the bonds (redeemable only in US dollars) or the dollars is bogus. The ONLY thing that gives them ANY value is their continued value... Gotta LOVE economics, eh? ];-D

One of the basics of trade these days was learned during the Marshal Plan after WW II - if you give them US Dollars - eventually those dollars HAVE TO COME HOME!!! Someone somewhere has to spend them HERE 'cause once we went off the gold standard, they ultimately aren't any good anywhere else.

And if you're going to be mad at Hugo (the creep) and others for attacking US currency, then you need to get PO-ed at France too as they nearly destroyed our economy when they attacked it by demanding redemption in gold (when we were still on the gold standard) and N Korea makes (literally) TENS OF MILLIONS of US dollars in counterfeit currency every year (that's so good, it's undetectable.)

Posted by: nofluer | May 19, 2008 6:44 PM | Report abuse

JakeD wrote:

"I want more of McSame."

Ooops sorry, He wrote, "I want more of the same."

Posted by: shrink2 | May 19, 2008 6:40 PM | Report abuse

Iran is tiny?

It didn't take a country the size of the Soviet Union to take down the World Trade Centers.

Posted by: howdy999 | May 19, 2008 6:40 PM | Report abuse

Let me paraphrase McCain's statement, since I assume it is like all of his addresses.

"War surge war surge cut taxes no surrender war pork war cut taxes war."

Never any mention how we can survive fiscally when we cut every conceivable tax AND increase military spending AND continue to escalate the war in the Middle East.

Those details are for worry warts and naive people, I guess.

Posted by: steve boyington | May 19, 2008 6:40 PM | Report abuse

JakeD said, "To all of you in favor of Obama speaking to Iran with no pre-conditions being met, go ahead and try convincing just Ziggy that Iran should give up it's nuclear ambitions."

JakeD, tell me why Iran should give up its nuclear ambitions when Iran is legally entitled to pursue them? After all, Iran is a signatory to the NPT and has suffered intrusive IAEA inspections for years that have concluded that Iran has no nuclear weapons program.

So what business does the USA have in trying to coerce any nation to forgo its legal rights or activities? I'll tell you -no business at all.

JakeD, if you want to do something positive, go and convince the USA to start adhering to its own obligations. The USA is a signatory to the NPT and pledged to reduce and eventually divest itself of all nuclear weapons. In complete abrogation of its legal obligations, the USA still maintains a huge nuclear arsenal and is continuing to develop new generations of nuclear weapons.

The USA also abrogated the Anti-Ballistic Missile Treaty and has not adhered to any international law that I can think of. IT has rampaged around the world, overthrowing legally elected governments, assassinating leaders, funding terrorist organisations such as the Contras in Nicaragua and now the Jundullah on the border of Pakistan.

The world is really fed up with the machinations of the USA, the lies, the wars based on phoney pretexts, such as the invasions of Grenada and Iraq, the unwarranted and illegal aggression against Yugoslavia and much more.

JakeD, read some history instead of listening to those presidential candidates who have great difficulty remembering whether they came under fire at airports and other memory lapses and outright lies. It's just a good thing that Bush and Cheney will be leaving the White House soon, but I just wonder which pack of idiots are going to take their place.

Posted by: Ziggy | May 19, 2008 6:39 PM | Report abuse

On this issue, Obama is in over his head. If this were 1962, would have Obama quarrantined Cuba as JFK did? Hardly!

Posted by: Lush | May 19, 2008 6:35 PM | Report abuse

You guys sound like a bunch of WAR hungry Mongols!! Don't you learn form the mistakes that GOP Foreign Policies always lead to instability and very little gain . Example: Noriega in Nicaragua, Iran in the 80's , Kosovo and the Serbs in the 90's, Israel in the 70's . These were all projects the U.S Govt. created to gain interests in those areas and they fell apart. The Govt. doesn't like Jews but they sure use them to gain an excuse to hang around the Arabs. Don't you see its all about interests. The U.S is the like the 3 horses of the apocalypse, for you religous nuts, and the Terrorist threat for you Army mongols!!

Posted by: LUISLE-CA | May 19, 2008 6:35 PM | Report abuse

P.P.S. to Anonymous (Nofluer?):

If whatever President McCain does for the NEXT 8 years results in NO TERRORIST ATTACK ON U.S. SOIL, will you then finally concede that the GOP must have been on to SOMETHING right?
>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Yep - me again (I'm used to using web sites where they have auto-id so you don't have to SAY every time...)

It's a possible - but that comment would be predicated on a good analysis of changes in the overall situation. I mean, if you were a bank robber, would you rob a bank with a heavy division around it facing out, or one with wood walls and no guards?

Which brings up the question - what price freedom?

We both remember Chicago and Kent State, the bombing of the Senate Cloak room, etc. We had more attacks by domestic terrorists than from foreign terrorists now - but no one ignored/suspended habeas corpus or went around invading homes without warrants and telling people if they said anything about it, they could disappear! and the nation and the Republic survived.

Oh - and for the moron who called JakeD a "Baby boomer?" Wrong - he's older than that. (No boomers fought in Korea - we were MUCH too young - the oldest of us would have been about 5 or 6 years old when Korea kicked off.)

Posted by: nofluer | May 19, 2008 6:29 PM | Report abuse

LOL, Ziggy -- you probably think there were controlled demolitions at the WTC too -- I am still waiting for anyone else out there to talk Ziggy down from the ledge. Come on, liberals, now's your chance to prove how talking can solve all problems ...

Posted by: JakeD | May 19, 2008 6:27 PM | Report abuse

O.K. then, Nofluer, you said "I do not expect the hiatus to continue ..."

If whatever President McCain does for the NEXT 8 years results in NO TERRORIST ATTACK ON U.S. SOIL, will you then finally concede that the GOP must have been on to SOMETHING right?

Posted by: JakeD | May 19, 2008 6:24 PM | Report abuse

After reading feedback about the Iran issue, I am convinced that most Americans have no idea why the USA is threatening Iran constantly. It's not aboout nukes, because Iran is no threat to the USA in this regard. It's not about oil, because the USA has massive deposits of oil anyway. It's all about propping up the US dollar and US economy.

Since the USA broke away from the gold standard and cut a cosy deal with OPEC to force the rest of the world to use nothing but US dollars to buy oil, the USA has been having a free lunch. Every nation that needed oil had to obtain US dollars, so they sent goods to America, received US paper Monopoly money and bought their oil. The USA didn't have to do anything for its oil except keep the printing presses rolling, making more Monopoly money that the rest of the world had to accept. Inflation was the mechanism used to devalue this Monopoly money, so that any nation that tried to redeem their dollar holdings from the USA would get less for them than what they had to exchange to get them. A very cosy scam that has been perpetrated on the world since 1973 or so.

However, the scam started falling apart when Saddam Hussein started selling Iraqi oil directly to the Europeans for Euro and the US dollar suddenly plummeted when the world saw that it didn't have to hold worthless Yankee dollars to buy oil. So Saddam had to be stopped - and he was, with a war and invasion based on a pack of lies. But it was too late - the cat was out of the bag.

Venezuela saw what was happening and started selling its oil for Yen, Euro and other currencies and literally overnight, there were two CIA engineered attempts to overthrow Hugo Chavez, which failed.

Then Iran decided to get out from under the US thumb and started selling its oil for Euro and Yen and suddenly pretexts for "regime change" started flowing from the White House. The crazy thing is that if Iran guaranteed to only sell its oil for US dollars, all of a sudden the nuclear weapons rhetoric from the USA would vanish into thin air.

The bottom line is this. Since the mid 1970s, US currency has been backed by oil. But Take away that backing and the US dollar is worthless - the free lunch is over. The Iranians have done this by trading oil for currencies other than US dollars and holders of huge US debt such as China are getting the idea of divesting themselves of US dollars by demanding redemption - however, the USA is too far in debt to be able to buy those dollars back, thus would be bankrupt.

This is the big weapon the Iranians have, not the nukes but the destruction of the entire US economy, which of course funds the US military that thinks it can impose its will on the rest of the world. The problem for the USA is that the Iranians are succeeding. Look at the plummeting value of the dollar. Venezuela is doing the same as Iran and Russia will sell its oil and gas for Euro and Ruble.

This is why the USA is scrabbling to stave off economic destruction, because once the world gets access to oil for Euro and other currencies, the USA may be forced to buy its oil for those other currencies and who will accept the ever-diminishing US dollar?

So citizens of the USA, I suggest you start hoarding as much gold as you can lay your hands on, because somewhere down the track, your US dollars are going to be about as good as Argentinian pesos.

Posted by: Ziggy | May 19, 2008 6:24 PM | Report abuse

OBAMA 2008

Posted by: Sam | May 19, 2008 6:23 PM | Report abuse

P.S. to Anonymous:

I have never been to Sydney.
>>>>>>>>>>>

That would have been me. Getting old is a bittch. ;-D

(VN - 1970 & 72/73)

Posted by: nofluer | May 19, 2008 6:20 PM | Report abuse

David O'Grath:

Regardless, Bush is an American citizen. This thread is about McCain blasting Obama for meeting with FOREIGN-BORN terrorists.

Posted by: JakeD | May 19, 2008 6:17 PM | Report abuse

George Bush is an attack on US Soil.

Posted by: David O'Grath | May 19, 2008 6:14 PM | Report abuse

JakeD - so, you're a baby boomer with an overwhelming sense of entitlement still trying to force your 1950's values on everyone who lives in the present day.

Posted by: Anonymous | May 19, 2008 6:12 PM | Report abuse

McCain retires, Obama inspires!

McCain is less intelligent. Suffers from severe memory loss because of his age of 72, is very similar to Bush as both of them offer no solutions but are coordinated by neocon think tanks and lobbyists. If McCain would run like a Democrat he will win in November, but I don't think the GOP wants him to loose its core support (special interests) and change the GOP brand significantly. How the GOP will rebrand its brand is gonna be interesting to see. Obama has to focus on domestic issues instead of foreign issues. The GOP is weakest on healthcare,education and economy (look what a mess Bush will leave after 8 years of devastating policies)

Posted by: Sam | May 19, 2008 6:12 PM | Report abuse

P.P.S. to Anonymous (Nofluer?):

If whatever President McCain does for the NEXT 8 years results in NO TERRORIST ATTACK ON U.S. SOIL, will you then finally concede that the GOP must have been on to SOMETHING right?

Posted by: JakeD | May 19, 2008 6:07 PM | Report abuse

I think it would cause most Republicans a lot of shame to have a black man take office and clean this country up the way they have claimed to be the only politicians capable of doing so, yet have always found a distraction in foreign affairs.

Posted by: Dave Borrows | May 19, 2008 6:07 PM | Report abuse

Dave Neville, NO:

Because, I did my combat tour already in Korea. How about you?

P.S. to Anonymous:

I have never been to Sydney.

Posted by: JakeD | May 19, 2008 6:04 PM | Report abuse

For the record - while McBush were playing in their sandbox in Iraq, North Korea got nukes.

But, they don't talk about that anymore do they?

Posted by: Mr. Peepers | May 19, 2008 6:03 PM | Report abuse

To all of you in favor of Obama speaking to Iran with no pre-conditions being met, go ahead and try convincing just Ziggy that Iran should give up it's nuclear ambitions ...

Posted by: JakeD | May 19, 2008 6:02 PM | Report abuse

Jake - how come you're not serving your country in Iraq?

Posted by: Dave Neville, NO | May 19, 2008 6:01 PM | Report abuse

JakeD

Sydney? Been there...

I did not know one way or the other whether we would be attacked again in short order or long term. There was insufficient data and incomplete knowledge as to exactly what we were dealing with at the time. We had no idea of the length or resources available to the planning cycle we were dealing with to get inside it. Hopefully that situation has been improved upon since... oops. There's that "hope" word again! ;-D

I do not expect the hiatus to continue, however. Our borders are too open (keeping in mind that the 9/11 people came in legally and we're currently bringing in HUGE numbers of Somalis and etc), resources are too available here. ie we're just a HUGE fat target - or as we used to say, we're "fat, dumb, and happy."

And the current administration taking credit for the lull is like them saying they were happy to provide a sunny day for parts of the country.

Posted by: Anonymous | May 19, 2008 5:58 PM | Report abuse

Here's the bottom line: Iran wants the bomb. Period. They aren't gonna voluntarily stop until they have it. Sanctions aren't gonna work. Neither will "negotiations" and "diplomacy", nor any of the other fig leaves that the pacifists typically trot out. The mullahs want their bomb and they're just stalling for time. Anyone who seriously believes otherwise is an idiot.

Given this situation, we have two choices here:

1) Continue to dither, hem & haw, taking the "high road" while the mullahs get their bomb, then cross our fingers and hope to God that they don't ever actually use it (or, more likely, give it to a terrorist group to use while they sit back and watch). This is what you'll get with President Obama.

2) Send in the US Air Force and the US Special Forces to reduce Natanz to a pile of rubble. This is what you'll get with President McCain.

There is no third option, people.

For my part, I'm going with #2, and it's not even close. Anyone who has ever studied Shia islam knows that devout shia believe that for The Mahdi to return to Earth and usher in an era of perfect peace & justice, there has to first be a period of global conflagration to wipe out the existing order.

Barack Obama showed his ignorance when he stated that Iran isn't as big a threat as the Soviets were. The Soviets, at the end of the day, valued life more than ideology. The religious zealots running Iran value ideology more than life. Religious extremists are capable of actions that normal people cannot comprhend, and this is precisely why the idea of an Iran with nuclear weaponry is patently unacceptable to all but the most delusional, pie-in-the-sky liberals.

John McCain understands this. Barack Obama does not.

Posted by: Dan R. | May 19, 2008 5:58 PM | Report abuse

Karl Rove endorses McCain!!! If the wisest American endorses McCain so am I!

Posted by: Karl Rove | May 19, 2008 5:58 PM | Report abuse

I love a spicy meat pickle.

Posted by: JakeD | May 19, 2008 5:57 PM | Report abuse

These US figures all bluster about persuading or coercing Iran to abandon its nuclear ambitions, but why should Iran do this? The bottom line is that Iran is a signatory to the NPT and thus has all the right in the world to pursue nuclear ambitions, including enriching uranium. The USA has absolutely no right to attempt to make Iran abandon its legal activities and of course the threat of attack is highly illegal under international law. But of course the USA has never adhered to international law, but expects every other nation to do so. With the litany of crimes against sovereign nations committed by the USA, including the overthrow of elected governments, assassination of leaders, funding of terrorist organisations and much more, the USA is by far the greatest terrorist nation this planet has ever seen. For example, right now, the USA is occupying two nations, one of which had war inflicted on it on the basis of a deliberately fabricated pack of lies. Right now the USA is funding Jundullah, a terrorist group on the border of Iran. Right now, the USA has allocated $75 million to foment "regime change" in Iran, a completely illegal act. Personally, I wouldn't blame the Iranians for trying to get nuclear weapons, merely to defend themselves from the warmongering USA. We saw the difference in treatment that North Korea received from the USA when Bush toadied up to Kim Jong Il, simply because the USA would never dare attack a nuclear armed nation and see its Seventh Fleet vaporised. But Iran doesn't have nuclear weapons, so threats of attack are constantly flowing from the USA. More power to any nation that stands up to the world's greatest terrorist and international bully, the USA.

Posted by: Ziggy | May 19, 2008 5:57 PM | Report abuse

James:

Do you think terrorists are not willing to inflict total nuclear annihilation?

Posted by: JakeD | May 19, 2008 5:56 PM | Report abuse

The only chance the Republikkkans have of winning this November is to deliver Bin Laden.

I hear he's working at the Dominos in Crawford.

Posted by: McCainSucks | May 19, 2008 5:56 PM | Report abuse

Obama forgot to add "And 9/11 was only 2 buildings"

Posted by: Rick S | May 19, 2008 5:54 PM | Report abuse

AL:

I may be "old" but not THAT old!!!

Posted by: JakeD | May 19, 2008 5:54 PM | Report abuse

Keep your friends close, and your enemies closer. ---Sun-tzu, The Art of War

McCain is full of the old Bush rhetoric - tough-talking, saber-rattling, cowboy diplomacy that does nothing but exacerbate problems and make solutions farther away and more costly in money AND blood.

Admittedly, there are some people that you cannot negotiate into changing their minds. But if you don't talk to them AT ALL, you'll never know how stubborn they are, how strongly they will hold to their positions. You will never know if a compromise is possible if you don't even find out what they want.

But the Bush (and now McCain) policy is that we won't talk to you unless you're ALREADY doing what we want you to. It's a self-defeating attitude. We lay out our demands, and until you meet them, we're not even going to listen to what your demands are.

Can you imagine that in business? "You're going to pay me $24,000 for that minivan, and until you agree to that, I'm not even going listen to what kind of car you want."

And this, they call foreign policy.

One final fact: Obama's statement about 'tiny' nations was not to dismiss their threat, but to point out that Kennedy, Nixon, Ford, Carter, Reagan, and Bush Sr were all willing to sit down with the leaders of the Soviet Union, at a time when they represented the greatest threat the US has ever known - the threat of total nuclear annihilation. If we can negotiate under THAT threat, then shouldn't we be strong enough to talk to pipsqueaks like Kim Jong-Il or Ahmadinejad?

Posted by: James | May 19, 2008 5:54 PM | Report abuse

GOP = Good Old Petroleum

Posted by: Same old song | May 19, 2008 5:53 PM | Report abuse

"These capitalists generally act harmoniously and in concert, to fleece the people."

--Abraham Lincoln

Posted by: AL | May 19, 2008 5:53 PM | Report abuse

"The time comes upon every public man when it is best for him to keep his lips closed."


--Abraham Lincoln to JakeD

Posted by: AL | May 19, 2008 5:51 PM | Report abuse

Luke Gilmore:

Thanks for posting that yet again. Did you look up "McCain-Feingold" campaign finance reform? As I said, whether you want to believe him or not, McCain has apologized and maintained a crusade to change campaign financing ever since the Keating Five scandal.

Posted by: JakeD | May 19, 2008 5:51 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: Cantabrigian | May 19, 2008 5:36 PM

The core of the 2008 presidential election:
"EXPERIENCE versus HOPE"
The voter must determine their priority.
------------------------------

Don't you mean: "MAVERICK vs WISHFUL-THINKING" ?

Personally McCain wouldn't be my perfect choice, but what I do like about him is that neither DEM or GOP's base likes him much.

Posted by: Anonymous | May 19, 2008 5:50 PM | Report abuse

McCain is a strong fighter, Obama a weak talker. I understand why liberals vote for the weak guy, but my fellow republican friends? That pisses me off, people that turn their back on their party when sometimes it's getting rough. So what!? I will never betray the GOP nor America!

Posted by: Sinterklaas | May 19, 2008 5:50 PM | Report abuse

"The shepherd drives the wolf from the sheep's for which the sheep thanks the shepherd as his liberator, while the wolf denounces him for the same act as the destroyer of liberty. Plainly, the sheep and the wolf are not agreed upon a definition of liberty."

--Abraham Lincoln

Posted by: AL | May 19, 2008 5:49 PM | Report abuse

"JakeD:
GO ARMY!! BEAT NAVY!!"
>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

In your dreams.
;-D

Posted by: nofluer | May 19, 2008 5:48 PM | Report abuse

John McCain is a liar. Just ask Charles Keating about the Senator's involvement in the Savings and Loan scandal.

Charles Keating was convicted of racketeering and fraud in both state and federal court after his Lincoln Savings & Loan collapsed, costing the taxpayers $3.4 billion. His convictions were overturned on technicalities; for example, the federal conviction was overturned because jurors had heard about his state conviction, and his state charges because Judge Lance Ito (yes, that judge) screwed up jury instructions. Neither court cleared him, and he faces new trials in both courts.)

Though he was not convicted of anything, McCain intervened on behalf of Charles Keating after Keating gave McCain at least $112,00 in contributions. In the mid-1980s, McCain made at least 9 trips on Keating's airplanes, and 3 of those were to Keating's luxurious retreat in the Bahamas. McCain's wife and father-in-law also were the largest investors (at $350,000) in a Keating shopping center; the Phoenix New Times called it a "sweetheart deal."

In 1996, on the eve of the retrial of the federal case, Keating entered a plea agreement -- he admitted to having committed bankruptcy fraud by extracting $1 million from American Financial Corp. while already anticipating the collapse that happened weeks later. In return, the federal prosecutors dropped all other charges against him and his son, Charles Keating III. He was sentenced to the four years he had already served.[3]

Keating remains essentially unrepentant, maintaining that not his mistakes but regulators' actions were ultimately responsible for the losses. He repeated these claims in an interview in 2006. The 2004 book The Savings and Loan Crisis: Lessons from a Regulatory Failure makes similar claims and presents Keating in a favorable light.[4]

In an April 2008 opinion piece titled "The Keating Five Legacy," William K. Black, Associate Professor of Law and Economics at the University of Missouri, Kansas City, presents his views about Keating (among others). Black was counsel to the Federal Home Loan Bank Board during the savings and loan crisis of the 1980s and was a whistleblower in the Keating Five scandal. His book on the crisis "The Best Way to Rob a Bank Is to Own One" was published in 2005 by the University of Texas Press.[5]

Some who lost their life savings committed suicide. When Charles Keating was prematurely released from jail, the living victims and family members of those who took their own lives felt as if they had been double crossed again.


This old man should go back to his luxurious ranch and spend his remaining days barbecuing and riding his horses.

His idea of who is a "terrorist" is probably anyone who lives in a foreign country.

Not this time.


Posted by: Luke Gilmore | May 19, 2008 5:47 PM | Report abuse

Please McCain we don't need stupid ignorant and old President like you in the White House again, we need a fresh blood like Obama, how r u going to solve the problem without having a talk with Iran, We have enough suffering from the stupid bush.

Posted by: Ida | May 19, 2008 5:47 PM | Report abuse

What is not Fine is that I am among those Americans who are tiny.

Posted by: JakeD | May 19, 2008 5:45 PM | Report abuse

"Public sentiment is everything. With public sentiment, nothing can fail. Without it, nothing can succeed."

--Abraham Lincoln

Posted by: AL | May 19, 2008 5:44 PM | Report abuse

McCain is now projected to win the majority of swing states so if Obama wants to win in November he has got to appeal more to the blue-collar voters. Or he has to win a bunch of red states which is hard in the South. Unfortunately Wholefoods liberals are not mainstream here. They are actually hated by the vast majority as they are considered to be arrogant, atheist and elitist regardless of whether Obama's policy would favour their interests.

Posted by: John | May 19, 2008 5:44 PM | Report abuse

Hah, Americans are funny. Who says Iran would even talk to the baboons who attacked their neighbors and keep threatening them every single day? America is the terrorist number one to them and talking to terrorists may not be in their best interest at all.

Posted by: Farzad5 | May 19, 2008 5:27 PM
>>>>>>>>>>>>>
Farzad5 - I understand your feelings on this, but may I suggest that it IS in Iran's best interests to talk to the US?

It wasn't the Good Fairy that destroyed your Navy after I believe it was one of your frigates that shot a missile at a US Navy ship? (I could have the details wrong... but the result was the same.) If you can talk a guy with a big stick out of whacking you with it, then that's a GOOD thing, right?

Posted by: nofluer | May 19, 2008 5:44 PM | Report abuse

What's McCain drinking?
I'd like a swig of that hooch.

Posted by: Ted | May 19, 2008 5:43 PM | Report abuse

McBush in 2008!

Posted by: Desert Leap | May 19, 2008 5:43 PM | Report abuse

Sam:

If the post is about sex or drugs, you can be sure that is the FAKE JakeD, not me.

nofluer:

Fine, you are among the very tiny minority of Americans then who thought we wouldn't be attacked again in the next 6 years and 8 months later ; )

Posted by: JakeD | May 19, 2008 5:41 PM | Report abuse

Farzad, when McCain becomes President, he will blow you all with bombs.

Posted by: JakeD | May 19, 2008 5:39 PM | Report abuse

Hamas worked for Obama

The Times on Line
May 10, 2008
Barack Obama sacks adviser over talks with Hamas
Times on Line
One of Barack Obama's Middle East policy advisers disclosed yesterday that he had held meetings with the militant Palestinian group Hamas - prompting the likely Democratic nominee to sever all links with him.
Robert Malley told The Times that he had been in regular contact with Hamas, which controls Gaza and is listed by the US State Department as a terrorist organisation. Such talks, he stressed, were related to his work for a conflict resolution think-tank and had no connection with his position on Mr Obama's Middle East advisory council.
"I've never hidden the fact that in my job with the International Crisis Group I meet all kinds of people," he added.
Ben LaBolt, a spokesman for Mr Obama, responded swiftly: "Rob Malley has, like hundreds of other experts, provided informal advice to the campaign in the past. He has no formal role in the campaign and he will not play any role in the future." The rapid departure of Mr Malley followed 48 hours of heated clashes between John McCain, the Republican nominee-elect, and Mr Obama over Middle East policy.

Mr Obama, who has been trying to assuage suspicion towards him among the influential Jewish and pro-Israel lobby, spoke at a Washington reception marking the 60th anniversary of Israeli independence on Thursday when he promised that his commitment to the country's security would be "unshakeable". However, Mr McCain has high-lighted the Democrat's pledge to negotiate directly with nations such as Iran - whose leaders talk of wiping Israel off the map - and a statement from Hamas saying that it hoped that Mr Obama would win the presidency.
This was denounced as an offensive smear by Mr Obama, who repeated earlier statements saying that Hamas was "a terrorist organisation [and] we should not negotiate with them unless they recognise Israel, renounce violence".
He went on to suggest that Mr McCain's attack showed that he was "losing his bearings". This remark triggered a furious reaction from Mark Salter, the Republican's senior adviser, who said that Mr Obama was "intentionally raising John McCain's age as an issue" - a claim the Democrat vehemently denied. The intensity of this dispute reflects both Mr Obama's desire to move beyond his battle with Hillary Clinton and how Republicans are already beginning to train their sights on him.
The Republican National Committee has amassed a 1,000-page dossier on Mr Obama, with researchers spending weeks in Chicago seeking fresh material. He is already being criticised for his links with Rashid Khalidi, a Columbia University professor who has branded Israel an "apartheid system in creation".
Mr Malley, a respected commentator on Middle Eastern issues and part of President Clinton's negotiating team at the Camp David talks, has come under attack in recent months from right-wing bloggers. Yesterday, asked if Obama campaign was aware of his contact with Hamas, he said: "They know who I am but I don't think they vet everyone in a group of informal advisers."
Randy Scheunemann, Mr McCain's foreign policy chief, suggested that Mr Malley was part of an emerging pattern in which other advisers had been repudiated after throwing confusion over policies on trade and Iraq. "Perhaps because of his inexperience Senator Obama surrounds himself with advisers that contradict his stated policies," he said.

Posted by: Al from NJ | May 19, 2008 5:39 PM | Report abuse

The core of the 2008 presidential election:

"EXPERIENCE versus HOPE"

The voter must determine their priority.

Posted by: Cantabrigian | May 19, 2008 5:36 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: Farzad5 | May 19, 2008 5:27
Hah, Americans are funny. Who says Iran would even talk to the baboons who attacked their neighbors and keep threatening them every single day? America is the terrorist number one to them and talking to terrorists may not be in their best interest at all.
-------------------------------
Hey Sam, I'm sure you can change the attitudes Farzad5 is expressing. If that is his view, why don't you try first to convince him to have a different world view against US?

Posted by: peoplearestupid | May 19, 2008 5:35 PM | Report abuse

"Our defense is in the preservation of the spirit which prizes liberty as a heritage of all men, in ALL lands, everywhere. Destroy this spirit and you have planted the seeds of despotism around your own doors."

--Abraham Lincoln

Posted by: AL | May 19, 2008 5:35 PM | Report abuse

JakeD legalizing drugs is so anti GOP. You are a disgrace to my enemies party!

Posted by: Sam | May 19, 2008 5:34 PM | Report abuse

The problem that McCain has is that every mention of the middle east gives Obama an opportunity to ram Iraq down his throat. It's textbook Republican strategy to play tough on National Security - unfortunately, in 2008 it makes McCain sound a lot like Bush. Advantage Obama.

Posted by: Steven | May 19, 2008 5:34 PM | Report abuse

"Did you think we would go EIGHT YEARS without another 9/11 attack (or worse)?"
>>>>>>>>>>

Oh - that one. Sorry - there are a lot of questions flying around and I wasn't sure which one you meant.

Well... 8 years would be in 9/11/'09 so we actually haven't yet - but that aside...

We haven't gone 6.5 years without another attack either. The US does not exist in a vacuum - we are not the only enemy of the terrorists. The US and its allies have been attacked with a fair amount of regularity including the bombing of the train in Madrid that cost them several hundred innocent citizens dead and us Spanish troops and support in Iraq.

If you're only going to count attacks in North America - given the lead time to plan and train and execute a successful attack on a large scale - it's really too soon to say. If you'll remember, the WTC attack was conceived early in the Clinton presidency, set in motion during the Clinton Presidency, and actually executed almost a year after the Bush people took over.

Clinton didn't have a "balanced budget", the "Bush recession actually began in the last quarter of the Clinton Presidency, and there were destructive hurricanes during the Clinton presidency. Unlike some, I do not try to assign official Presidential blame to such things as hurricanes, economic business cycles, or terrorist planning cycles... which should give you a hint about the real reasons WHY we haven't been attacked in N.A. since 9/11/01.

Posted by: Nofluer | May 19, 2008 5:34 PM | Report abuse

"Nearly all men can stand adversity, but if you want to test a man's character, give him power."

--Abraham Lincoln

Posted by: AL | May 19, 2008 5:32 PM | Report abuse

We were attacked on 9/11 under this administration, after it cut funding to our intelligence agencies. Then we get into a war we can't figure out how to or what we're supposed to be winning. We disregard alternative proposals on negotiating with our enemies, yet we claim they're still getting stronger and more threatening. And McCain wants to keep this strategy going? C'mon, can somebody open a window and get real here?

Posted by: Same old song | May 19, 2008 5:32 PM | Report abuse

"Let not him who is houseless pull down the house of another, but let him work diligently and build one for himself, thus by example assuring that his own shall be safe from violence when built."

--Abraham Lincoln

Posted by: AL | May 19, 2008 5:31 PM | Report abuse

Yeah and Luxemburg can also declare a war to us but would you consider that to be serious? It would be like Rhode Island declaring a war to New York.

Posted by: Sam | May 19, 2008 5:31 PM | Report abuse

Obama went to Rev. Wrights church for 20 years and said he wasn't aware of some of his more controversial statements. Sort of like attending a KKK meeting thinking its the PTA. Yeah, im gonna vote for Barrack! He sounds qualified to me.

Posted by: donmac | May 19, 2008 5:31 PM | Report abuse

Unlike Sam, who is probably at some foreign cyber cafe, I plan to vote in favor of legalizing hashish in US cyber cafes.

Posted by: JakeD | May 19, 2008 5:30 PM | Report abuse

"If this is coffee, please bring me some tea; but if this is tea, please bring me some coffee."

--Abraham Lincoln

Posted by: AL | May 19, 2008 5:27 PM | Report abuse

I'm posting from a gay cyber cafe in second life.

Posted by: JakeD | May 19, 2008 5:27 PM | Report abuse

Hah, Americans are funny. Who says Iran would even talk to the baboons who attacked their neighbors and keep threatening them every single day? America is the terrorist number one to them and talking to terrorists may not be in their best interest at all.

Posted by: Farzad5 | May 19, 2008 5:27 PM | Report abuse

Liberals I'm sorry but I love our president as I love this country. It is unfair to compare McCain to one of our greatest presidents we've had. Bush has saved us from the ashes of evil. He protected us, he has decent values, therefore a better choice to follow him up would be Huckabee. McCain is better than Obama, that is true. Obama supports gay-mariage, does not want to protect America from terrorists and does not even want to protect honoust families from criminals by supporting anti gun legislation. Shame on you!

Posted by: Pres. Bush | May 19, 2008 5:26 PM | Report abuse

LOL! :-D

Sam- Sooo, you don't think Iran is a Problem or a Threat?

Are YOU aware, IRAN is in a DECLARED State of WAR with the Great Satan(US) ?

Have been for decades!

Yeah, they appear to be a little Gnat. But, the little Gnat is able to justify every single casualty they cause anybody BECAUSE THEY have Declared WAR!

We ignore their declaration, at ours, and our allies, Expense!

We really need to call them on that declaration, or take them at their Word, and shoot down any Iranian Flight outside their Airspace.

War is best played by BOTH Sides! :-)

Posted by: RAT-The | May 19, 2008 5:25 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: Sam | May 19, 2008 5:16 PM

What I forgot to mention, Iran does not pose a threath to the US and HAS NEVER IN HISTORY POSED A SERIOUS THREATH TO US. They do pose a threath to Israel and therefore we should tell Amhedinejad that if he would even fire a hand granate on Israel, the US and Israel will wipe at least Teheran (their capital) from the map.
So we want start, but react if necessary. Nothing more and nothing less, so lets try to find a way to meet both goals.
----------------------------------------
And you know this for sure? How? I guess they didn't take hostages during the Carter admin. Gee all Carter wanted to do was "Talk" to them and they'll surely see the errors of their ways and give back our hostages....Did that work?

Timothy McVey was harmless until he blew up the building in OK, Hitler was harmless until he started killing Jews in mass, Japan was harmless until Perl Harbor....the list goes on. So I ask again, HOW DO YOU KNOW Iran is HARMLESS?

Posted by: peoplearestupid | May 19, 2008 5:24 PM | Report abuse

welcome to the dangerous mind of mcbush. mcbush will refuse to talk to the likes of ahmadinejad and others because in relity he is no more intelligent than our good king brickhead. mcbush will only continue on down the road of u.s. self-destruction and foreign policy suicide. people such as our king and mcbush believe that threats and purposeful and wanton acts of genocide commited against innocent civilians across the planet on behalf of oil corporations and the likes general electric and general dynamics will scare all other potential enemies into their burrows where they will cower their futures away in fear of the dreaded u.s. war machine. this is so delusional as to rank this train of thought right up there with adolph hitlers' final days at the bunker in berlin. it is, in fact, the brickheads and mcbushes of the world who are cowering behind a veil of failure on a massive scale. i quote the great fdr; " the only thing we have to fear, is fear itself". let us raise the vanguard of the american people and refuse to be cowtowed by threats and fear. and let neo-fascists such as those who espouse fear and endless fear "swing in the breeze".

Posted by: lonewolf | May 19, 2008 5:24 PM | Report abuse

McCain's economic policies seem to favor my ability to import meat pickles.

Posted by: JakeD | May 19, 2008 5:23 PM | Report abuse

nofluer:

GO ARMY!! BEAT NAVY!!

P.S. -- here are the "democracies" in the Middle East (if you ever answer my question and you therefore want to continue the debate : )

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Image:GreaterMiddleEast.gif

Posted by: JakeD | May 19, 2008 5:23 PM | Report abuse

P.S. to Sam -- can you vote in the upcoming U.S. elections (or are you posting from some foreign Internet cafe)?

Posted by: JakeD | May 19, 2008 5:21 PM | Report abuse

Mark said:
"... I greatly appreciate him for his service, but how does being captured by the enemy constitute being a hero?"
>>>>>>>>>>>>>

There are actually several reasons that McCain is a hero - and I wouldn't count his actual capture as one of them. There is the fact that he was actually THERE flying for the Navy (UNLIKE Bush/Cheney/Rummy, etc). Unlike Air Force pilots of the Vietnam period, the Navy and the Marines didn't just throw their bombs in the general direction of the targets and haul azzz - they were pioneering the smart bombs. The first of these required the pilots to acquire the target with a plane mounted laser, and then hold it on the target until the bomb hit... which required the pilot to sloooowly circle the target in a predictable pattern while the enemy was shooting everything they had at the aircraft. (Which may have been how he got shot down - I don't know.)

But I believe the MAIN reason he's a recognized hero is because of the way he conducted himself AFTER his capture - giving aid and comfort to his fellow prisoners, being a source of strength for them in his continued resistance to the enemy and in general, the exemplary manner in which he conducted himself - upholding the best traditions of an officer in the Naval Service.

Posted by: nofluer | May 19, 2008 5:21 PM | Report abuse

Sam:

I agree that Iran does not pose a "threath" to the U.S.

Posted by: JakeD | May 19, 2008 5:18 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: Sam | May 19, 2008 5:11 PM

Does anyone think Obama would let Iran call the shots on the negotiation table?
He would listen in order to find a solution for Iran's energy problem and achieve 1 Iran would not pose a threath to Israel (if Iran attacks Israel the US will attack them) 2 Iranian citizens will have sufficient energy 3 International Trade benefits all (Iran has oil we have money).
By listening first,negotiating second and acting third you can achieve objectives if you don't even want to listen like mcBush then you won't achieve anything. Look at the last 8 years.
--------------------------
But you are making an assumption about what Iran cares about. It is just as probably (and evidence support this) that Iran, like Osama and others wants to destroy the West and Israel simply because "We are NOT Muslims - We ARE Infidels." So tell me what you could offer them in diplomatic talks to change anything?

Posted by: Anonymous | May 19, 2008 5:18 PM | Report abuse

I don't know if I can go another eight years without launching a friendly attack on an undercover police officer in an airport lavatory stall.

Posted by: JakeD | May 19, 2008 5:17 PM | Report abuse

What I forgot to mention, Iran does not pose a threath to the US and HAS NEVER IN HISTORY POSED A SERIOUS THREATH TO US. They do pose a threath to Israel and therefore we should tell Amhedinejad that if he would even fire a hand granate on Israel, the US and Israel will wipe at least Teheran (their capital) from the map.
So we want start, but react if necessary. Nothing more and nothing less, so lets try to find a way to meet both goals.

Posted by: Sam | May 19, 2008 5:16 PM | Report abuse

Yes Senator McCain,

Clearly it is more important to keep tensions high and risk a shooting war than give the Iranian Regime the prestige of being able to say we talked to them. I think this not being willing to negotiate without pre-conditions was a relatively new policy designed to prevent George Bush from making an ass of himself and America in front of antagonistic world leaders.

If this is not correct, somebody please explain to me, in concrete terms, what benefit Iran gains from direct talks with the US and what the US loses?

Posted by: Joebewildered | May 19, 2008 5:16 PM | Report abuse

to James Laughlin: so the President wasn't responsible for protecting our borders until 9/11? It's only after we shuffle existing folks around and give them a pretty new name that a terrorist attack counts?

Posted by: JoeT1 | May 19, 2008 5:16 PM | Report abuse

nofluer:

I think I've been more than accomodating. I would be happy to debate what an "EFFECTIVE" Democracy is, or should look like, and answer ALL of your questions, just as soon as you answer the one I asked (here it is one last time): "Did you think we would go EIGHT YEARS without another 9/11 attack (or worse)?"

Posted by: JakeD | May 19, 2008 5:14 PM | Report abuse

I like the man. I want to know him intimately.

Posted by: JakeD | May 19, 2008 5:14 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: Capt. Smash | May 19, 2008 4:58 PM

WOW!
AND YOU THINK THE GOP IS PROTECTING US NOW!
I have four important questions for Bush, McCain and the GOP!
1. Is Iran stronger or weaker since Bush's invasions of Iraq?
2. Has Osama bin Laden been killed or captured since Bush's invasion of Iraq?
3. Are we paying less for gas now or before Bush's invasion of Iraq?
4. Is our economy better of now or before Bush's invasion of Iraq?
If you answer these questions truthfully, is there any way you want to continue down the same foreign policy blunders of the last seven years?
This is a not a difficult question, most 3rd graders could answer this one
-----------------------------
Worthless arguments at this point in time... to do so right now is like asking the following questions while a patient is undergoing Chemotherapy for Cancer:

1. Do you have more hair now or when before the treatment?
2. Do you "look" healthier now or before the treatment?
3. Before the treatment, did you experience nausea like this?
4. Were you more susceptible to infections before the treatment or now?

What you have done is setup a straw-man argument. Ask and answer those questions 10-20 years from now and let history judge. You could be right but you also could be wrong.

Posted by: peoplearestupid | May 19, 2008 5:12 PM | Report abuse

Does anyone think Obama would let Iran call the shots on the negotiation table?
He would listen in order to find a solution for Iran's energy problem and achieve 1 Iran would not pose a threath to Israel (if Iran attacks Israel the US will attack them) 2 Iranian citizens will have sufficient energy 3 International Trade benefits all (Iran has oil we have money).
By listening first,negotiating second and acting third you can achieve objectives if you don't even want to listen like mcBush then you won't achieve anything. Look at the last 8 years.

Posted by: Sam | May 19, 2008 5:11 PM | Report abuse

"I don't like that man. I must get to know him better."

--Abraham Lincoln

Posted by: AL | May 19, 2008 5:10 PM | Report abuse

Mark wrote: 'This from a man who thinks the Shiite Iranians are arming the Sunni Al Qaida in Iraq.'

Anon wrote: 'Actually, they are - and a lot of it goes through Syria, and Iranian "diplomats" are found throughout the Kurdish region and in the Sunni areas.'

How could you funnel arms from Iran through Syria to Iraq? Syria is on the other side of Iraq from Iran.

If you think Kurds are involved in arming Al Qaida, that doesn't say much for US policy ... that the group with the most reason to like America is helping arm Al Qaida.

Posted by: B. Kaufmann | May 19, 2008 5:10 PM | Report abuse

"Strategy for Winning the War on Terror
Long-term approach: Advancing effective democracy"
>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Dude - you stopped me right on the first point. I believe that Iran and Israel are the ONLY two functioning "democracies" in the Middle East? And one is our ally, the other is our avowed enemy. This is not a consistent position, therefore it is a false position and irrelevant.

Since the rest is from the Government that brought you Shock and Awe and the terror threat colors, to say nothing of $4 plus gasoline - I won't bother reading the rest as I presume it will be just more of the same drivel I've been hearing for 7 years... Oh - and can anyone remember WHY we supposedly went into Iraq? (Any of the first five excuses will do.)

Posted by: nofluer | May 19, 2008 5:09 PM | Report abuse

"How many legs does a dog have if you call the tail a leg?

Four.

Calling a tail a leg does NOT make it a leg."

--Abraham Lincoln

Posted by: AL | May 19, 2008 5:08 PM | Report abuse

Wow. The election is really heating up now. And the results from this poll say everything. You won't believe these results!

http://www.votenic.com

Posted by: Joe | May 19, 2008 5:04 PM | Report abuse

The McCain/Bush policy has done the following for America:
* Inspired countless people to become "Terrorists".
* Created International distain for all things American.
* Greatly reduced the freedoms of the average American.
* Greatly reduced the security of the average American.
* Greatly reduced the finances of the average American.
* Enriched Republican Leadership and the "Good Ol' Boys Club".
* Used Government power to attack non-Republicans.
* Divided this nation against itself.
* Government communication with public is based on what Republicans want reality to be, instead of the truth.

Posted by: McBushy | May 19, 2008 5:03 PM | Report abuse

McLame is trying to say anything to gain some popularity, just as he opposed torture until he needed to support it to get to be the frontrunner in a campaign of worthless Republican Presidential Prospects. Just as he opposed retaining tax cuts for the top 2%, until he needed to support them for political popularity. How does being a failure during a war in which you were captured make one a hero anyway? Aren't most heroes people who actually accomplish something besides being a tragic victim? I greatly appreciate him for his service, but how does being captured by the enemy constitute being a hero?

Posted by: Mark | May 19, 2008 5:03 PM | Report abuse

Iran, Venezuela and Cuba are not "tiny" compared to the Soviet Union. Their combined population is over 100 million; the former Soviet Union has between two and three times that. They are not equivalent, but Obama needs some basic geography.

More than that, he needs to understand the ways in which smaller states (two of the three oil-rich and with certified nutters at the helm) pose threats the old USSR could only dream about. The USSR used such states as proxies, now they pursue their own agendas--which can be coordinated to render them more effective, but are largely independent.

If Obama does understand all that he needs to stop saying stupid things that make the rest of the world question his judgment, ASAP.

Talking is not appeasement and negotiation has a place--but this guy looks like the proverbial 90 lb weakling and he can't talk like Gandhi, he just can't, if he is to be the next president.

Posted by: Clio1 | May 19, 2008 5:03 PM | Report abuse

P.S. to Ken O:

Were you just as upset with "THE BEST" spammer trying to drown out the pro-McCain posts over here?

http://blog.washingtonpost.com/the-trail/2008/05/18/record_obama_crowd_the_size_of.html#comments

Posted by: JakeD | May 19, 2008 5:02 PM | Report abuse

We can ill afford to not THINK and utilize all of our possible options. We need wisdom. Our options and capacity to make decent decisions, sometimes are limited when we don't take some action like Talking first which could save us our resources and possibly spare us some disasters. Why not go that route first? That is collecting information first hand. The point is, at least we've covered some bases. I definitely want my POTUS to know what's going on first hand, beyond reports. We are not losing anything by talking to the guy. Again, why not? Especially when considering using our military. Our military is currently stretched thin and under illegit circumstances. It would be a major plus consider all options. We wouldn't be getting all of our options, and other decent decisions could have been made. This isn't the time for what "could have happened, should've happened, etc." We need to get in there, get direct answers, and make decisions from there. We have a lot at stake here. This is not the time for that. Be bold, face him. Be the significant credible source. I think that is so IMPORTANT I can't stress it enough.

Posted by: Obama2008 | May 19, 2008 5:02 PM | Report abuse

My friends, I have no ideas, no platform, nothing even remotely positive to say. Therefore, my friends, my entire strategy for this campaign is to attack and smear my opponent, hoping to distract him and the media from his positive, visionary message of change and hope. My friends, as long as the media attend my barbecues and keep calling me a "straight-talking maverick," it just might work.

Posted by: Plan 9 | May 19, 2008 5:02 PM | Report abuse

Mccain said: "a summit meeting with the president of the United States, which is what Senator Obama proposes, is the most prestigious card we have to play in international diplomacy. It is not a card to be played lightly."
___________________________________________

Funny, I would have thought going to War would be more selective than speaking with the President. Apparently not to Mccain.

Posted by: Anonymous | May 19, 2008 5:01 PM | Report abuse

"America will never be destroyed from the outside. If we falter and lose our freedoms, it will be because we destroyed ourselves."

--Abraham Lincoln

Posted by: AL | May 19, 2008 5:00 PM | Report abuse

"Obama fails to understand basic realities of international relations."

This from a man who thinks the Shiite Iranians are arming the Sunni Al Qaida in Iraq. ...
>>>>>>>>>>

Actually, they are - and a lot of it goes through Syria, and Iranian "diplomats" are found throughout the Kurdish region and in the Sunni areas.

The enemy of my enemy is my friend - and in Middle East politics, the man who tried to kill you yesterday is your ally today, and perhaps you will kill him tomorrow.

Posted by: Anonymous | May 19, 2008 5:00 PM | Report abuse

I can only hope that McSame is this stupid and old-think throughout the campaign. And that there will be more voters this time ready for new approaches.

Posted by: annegreen | May 19, 2008 4:59 PM | Report abuse

James:
If it sounds like I'm a Republican, chances are very good that I might be a closet homosexual meth user who likes my back rubs performed in public airport restrooms.

Posted by: JakeD | May 19, 2008 4:59 PM | Report abuse

Ken O:

Not at all -- if you read the comments, someone asked for the information -- and refused to accept just the thumbnail sketch I provided. Next canard?

Posted by: JakeD | May 19, 2008 4:58 PM | Report abuse

WOW!

AND YOU THINK THE GOP IS PROTECTING US NOW!

I have four important questions for Bush, McCain and the GOP!

1. Is Iran stronger or weaker since Bush's invasions of Iraq?

2. Has Osama bin Laden been killed or captured since Bush's invasion of Iraq?

3. Are we paying less for gas now or before Bush's invasion of Iraq?

4. Is our economy better of now or before Bush's invasion of Iraq?

If you answer these questions truthfully, is there any way you want to continue down the same foreign policy blunders of the last seven years?

This is a not a difficult question, most 3rd graders could answer this one

Posted by: Capt. Smash | May 19, 2008 4:58 PM | Report abuse

It's hard for me to contain my excitement for a McCain Presidency. I'm literally throbbing at the thought of his hard, solid, massive foreign policy.

Posted by: JakeD | May 19, 2008 4:58 PM | Report abuse

pj451:

Do you know how many Obama advisers (not even counting Rev. Wright) have resigned? Do you know how many Bill Clinton advisers resigned during his first campaign for President?

Posted by: JakeD | May 19, 2008 4:57 PM | Report abuse

JakeD, you're just pasting reams of crap in here to hide all the comments critical of John McCain.
What are you, a self-appointed government censor?

Posted by: Ken O | May 19, 2008 4:56 PM | Report abuse

75,000 show up to see Senator Obama in Oregon.
5th McBush aid resigns amid ongoing scandle.
LOVING IT!

Posted by: pj451 | May 19, 2008 4:55 PM | Report abuse

Nofluer:

Too late -- I already cut & paste the details (just in case others like you won't go to the source and review of themselves):

Strategy for Winning the War on Terror
Long-term approach: Advancing effective democracy

The long-term solution for winning the War on Terror is the advancement of freedom and human dignity through effective democracy. Elections are the most visible sign of a free society and can play a critical role in advancing effective democracy. But elections alone are not enough. Effective democracies honor and uphold basic human rights, including freedom of religion, conscience, speech, assembly, association, and press. They are responsive to their citizens, submitting to the will of the people. Effective democracies exercise effective sovereignty and maintain order within their own borders, address causes of conflict peacefully, protect independent and impartial systems of justice, punish crime, embrace the rule of law, and resist corruption. Effective democracies also limit the reach of government, protecting the institutions of civil society. In effective democracies, freedom is indivisible. They are the long-term antidote to the ideology of terrorism today. This is the battle of ideas.

To wage the battle of ideas effectively, we must recognize what does and does not give rise to terrorism:

Terrorism is not the inevitable by-product of poverty. Many of the September 11 hijackers were from middle-class backgrounds, and many terrorist leaders, like bin Laden, are from privileged upbringings.
Terrorism is not simply a result of hostility to U.S. policy in Iraq. The United States was attacked on September 11 and many years earlier, well before we toppled the Saddam Hussein regime. Moreover, countries that did not participate in Coalition efforts in Iraq have not been spared from terror attacks.
Terrorism is not simply a result of Israeli-Palestinian issues. Al-Qaida plotting for the September 11 attacks began in the 1990s, during an active period in the peace process.
Terrorism is not simply a response to our efforts to prevent terror attacks. The al-Qaida network targeted the United States long before the United States targeted al-Qaida. Indeed, the terrorists are emboldened more by perceptions of weakness than by demonstrations of resolve. Terrorists lure recruits by telling them that we are decadent, easily intimidated, and will retreat if attacked.
The terrorism we confront today springs from:

Political alienation. Transnational terrorists are recruited from populations with no voice in their own government and see no legitimate way to promote change in their own country. Without a stake in the existing order, they are vulnerable to manipulation by those who advocate a perverse political vision based on violence and destruction.
Grievances that can be blamed on others. The failures the terrorists feel and see are blamed both on others and on perceived injustices from the recent or sometimes distant past. The terrorists' rhetoric keeps wounds associated with this past fresh and raw, a potent motivation for revenge and terror.
Subcultures of conspiracy and misinformation. Terrorists recruit more effectively from populations whose information about the world is contaminated by falsehoods and corrupted by conspiracy theories. The distortions keep alive grievances and filter out facts that would challenge popular prejudices and self-serving propaganda.
An ideology that justifies murder. Terrorism ultimately depends upon the appeal of an ideology that excuses or even glorifies the deliberate killing of innocents. Islam has been twisted and made to serve an evil end, as in other times and places other religions have been similarly abused.
Defeating terrorism in the long run requires that each of these factors be addressed. Effective democracy provides a counter to each, diminishing the underlying conditions terrorists seek to exploit.

In place of alienation, democracy offers an ownership stake in society, a chance to shape one's own future.
In place of festering grievances, democracy offers the rule of law, the peaceful resolution of disputes, and the habits of advancing interests through compromise.
In place of a culture of conspiracy and misinformation, democracy offers freedom of speech, independent media, and the marketplace of ideas, which can expose and discredit falsehoods, prejudices, and dishonest propaganda.
In place of an ideology that justifies murder, democracy offers a respect for human dignity that abhors the deliberate targeting of innocent civilians.
Democracy is the antithesis of terrorist tyranny, which is why the terrorists denounce it and are willing to kill the innocent to stop it. Democracy is based on empowerment, while the terrorists' ideology is based on enslavement. Democracies expand the freedom of their citizens, while the terrorists seek to impose a single set of narrow beliefs. Democracy sees individuals as equal in worth and dignity, having an inherent potential to create, govern themselves, and exercise basic freedoms of speech and conscience. The terrorists see individuals as objects to be exploited, and then to be ruled and oppressed.

Democracies are not immune to terrorism. In some democracies, some ethnic or religious groups are unable or unwilling to grasp the benefits of freedom otherwise available in the society. Such groups can evidence the same alienation and despair that the transnational terrorists exploit in undemocratic states. This accounts for the emergence in democratic societies of homegrown terrorists - even among second- and third-generation citizens. Even in these cases, the long-term solution remains deepening the reach of democracy so that all citizens enjoy its benefits. We will continue to guard against the emergence of homegrown terrorists within our own Homeland as well.

The strategy to counter the lies behind the terrorists' ideology and deny them future recruits must empower the very people the terrorists most want to exploit: the faithful followers of Islam. We will continue to support political reforms that empower peaceful Muslims to practice and interpret their faith. We will work to undermine the ideological underpinnings of violent Islamic extremism and gain the support of non-violent Muslims around the world. The most vital work will be done within the Islamic world itself, and Jordan, Morocco, and Indonesia, among others, have begun to make important strides in this effort. Responsible Islamic leaders need to denounce an ideology that distorts and exploits Islam to justify the murder of innocent people and defiles a proud religion.

Many of the Muslim faith are already making this commitment at great personal risk. They realize they are a target of this ideology of terror. Everywhere we have joined in the fight against terrorism, Muslim allies have stood beside us, becoming partners in this vital cause. They know the stakes - the survival of their own liberty, the future of their own region, the justice and humanity of their own traditions - and the United States is proud to stand beside them. Not only will we continue to support the efforts of our Muslim partners overseas to reject violent extremism, we will continue to engage with and strengthen the efforts of Muslims within the United States as well. Through outreach programs and public diplomacy we will reveal the terrorists' violent extremist ideology for what it is - a form of totalitarianism following in the path of fascism and Nazism.

Over the short term: Four priorities of action

The advance of freedom, opportunity, and human dignity through democracy is the long-term solution to the transnational terror movement of today. To create the space and time for this
long-term solution to take root, we are operating along four priorities of action in the short term.

Prevent attacks by terrorist networks. A government has no higher obligation than to protect the lives and livelihoods of its citizens. The hard core among our terrorist enemies cannot be reformed or deterred; they will be tracked down, captured, or killed. They will be cut off from the network of individuals, institutions, and other resources they depend on for support and that facilitate their activities. The network, in turn, will be deterred, disrupted, and disabled. Working with committed partners across the globe, we continue to use a broad range of tools at home and abroad to take the fight to the terrorists, deny them entry to the United States, hinder their movement across international borders, and establish protective measures to further reduce our vulnerability to attack.

Attack terrorists and their capacity to operate. The United States and our partners continue to take active and effective measures against our primary terrorist enemies and certain other violent extremist groups that also pose a serious and continuing threat. We are attacking these terrorists and their capacity to operate effectively at home and abroad. Specifically, through the use of all elements of national power, we are denying or neutralizing what our terrorist enemies need to operate and survive:
Leaders, who provide the vision that followers strive to realize. They also offer the necessary direction, discipline, and motivation for accomplishing a given goal or task. Most terrorist organizations have a central figure who embodies the cause, in addition to several operational leaders and managers who provide guidance on a functional, regional, or local basis. The loss of a leader can degrade a group's cohesiveness and in some cases may trigger its collapse. Other terrorist groups adapt by promoting experienced cadre or decentralizing their command structures, making our challenge in neutralizing terrorist leaders even greater.
Foot soldiers, which include the operatives, facilitators, and trainers in a terrorist network. They are the lifeblood of a terrorist group - they make it run. Technology and globalization have enhanced the ability of groups to recruit foot soldiers to their cause, including well-educated recruits. We and our partners will not only continue to capture and kill foot soldiers, but will work to halt the influx of recruits into terrorist organizations as well. Without a continuing supply of personnel to facilitate and carry out attacks, these groups ultimately will cease to operate.
Weapons, the tools of terrorists and the means by which they murder to advance their cause. Terrorists exploit many avenues to develop and acquire weapons, including through state sponsors, theft or capture, and black market purchases. Our enemies employ existing technology - explosives, small arms, missiles and other devices - in both conventional and unconventional ways to terrorize and achieve mass effects. They also use non-weapon technologies as weapons, such as the airplanes on September 11. Our greatest and gravest concern, however, is WMD in the hands of terrorists. Preventing their acquisition and the dire consequences of their use is a key priority of this strategy.
Funds, which provide the fungible, easily transportable means to secure all other forms of material support necessary to the survival and operation of terrorist organizations. Our enemies raise funds through a variety of means, including soliciting contributions from supporters; operating businesses, NGOs, and charitable fronts; and engaging in criminal activity such as fraud, extortion, and kidnapping for ransom. They transfer funds through several mechanisms, including the formal banking system, wire transfers, debit or "smart" cards, cash couriers, and hawalas, which are alternative remittance systems based on trust. Effective disruption of funding sources and interdiction of transfer mechanisms can help our partners and us to starve terrorist networks of the material support they require.
Communications, which allow terrorists the ability to receive, store, manipulate, and exchange information. The methods by which terrorists communicate are numerous and varied. Our enemies rely on couriers and face-to-face contacts with associates and tend to use what is accessible in their local areas as well as what they can afford. They also use today's technologies with increasing acumen and sophistication. This is especially true with the Internet, which they exploit to create and disseminate propaganda, recruit new members, raise funds and other material resources, provide instruction on weapons and tactics, and plan operations. Without a communications ability, terrorist groups cannot effectively organize operations, execute attacks, or spread their ideology. We and our partners will continue to target the communication nodes of our enemy.
Propaganda operations, which are used by terrorists to justify violent action as well as inspire individuals to support or join the movement. The ability of terrorists to exploit the Internet and 24/7 worldwide media coverage allows them to bolster their prominence as well as feed a steady diet of radical ideology, twisted images, and conspiracy theories to potential recruits in all corners of the globe. Besides a global reach, these technologies allow terrorists to propagate their message quickly, often before an effective counter to terrorist messages can be coordinated and distributed. These are force multipliers for our enemy.
Deny terrorists entry to the United States and disrupt their travel internationally. Denying our enemies the tools to travel internationally and across and within our borders significantly impedes their mobility and can inhibit their effectiveness. They rely on illicit networks to facilitate travel and often obtain false identification documents through theft or in-house forgery operations. We will continue to enhance the security of the American people through a layered system of protections along our borders, at our ports, on our roadways and railways, in our skies, and with our international partners. We will continue to develop and enhance security practices and technologies to reduce vulnerabilities in the dynamic transportation network, inhibit terrorists from crossing U.S. borders, and detect and prevent terrorist travel within the United States. Our efforts will include improving all aspects of aviation security; promoting secure travel and identity documents; disrupting travel facilitation networks; improving border security and visa screening; and building international capacity and improving international information exchange to secure travel and combat terrorist travel. Our National Strategy to Combat Terrorist Travel and our National Strategy for Maritime Security will help guide our efforts.
Defend potential targets of attack. Our enemies are opportunistic, exploiting vulnerabilities and seeking alternatives to those targets with increased security measures. The targeting trend since at least September 11 has been away from hardened sites, such as official government facilities with formidable security, and toward softer targets - schools, restaurants, places of worship, and nodes of public transportation - where innocent civilians gather and which are not always well secured. Specific targets vary, but they tend to be symbolic and often selected because they will produce mass casualties, economic damage, or both.

While it is impossible to protect completely all potential targets all the time, we can deter and disrupt attacks, as well as mitigate the effects of those that do occur, through strategic security improvements at sites both at home and overseas. Among our most important defensive efforts is the protection of critical infrastructures and key resources - sectors such as energy, food and agriculture, water, telecommunications, public health, transportation, the defense industrial base, government facilities, postal and shipping, the chemical industry, emergency services, monuments and icons, information technology, dams, commercial facilities, banking and finance, and nuclear reactors, materials, and waste. These are systems and assets so vital that their destruction or incapacitation would have a debilitating effect on the security of our Nation. We will also continue to protect various assets such as historical attractions or certain high-profile events whose destruction or attack would not necessarily debilitate our national security but could damage the morale and confidence of the American people. Beyond the Homeland, we will continue to protect and defend U.S. citizens, diplomatic missions, and military facilities overseas, as well as work with our partners to strengthen their ability to protect their populations and critical infrastructures.
Deny WMD to rogue states and terrorist allies who seek to use them. Weapons of mass destruction in the hands of terrorists is one of the gravest threats we face. We have taken aggressive efforts to deny terrorists access to WMD-related materials, equipment, and expertise, but we will enhance these activities through an integrated effort at all levels of government and with the private sector and our foreign partners to stay ahead of this dynamic and evolving threat. In July 2006, the United States and Russia launched the Global Initiative to Combat Nuclear Terrorism to establish an international framework to enhance cooperation, build capacity, and act to combat the global threat of nuclear terrorism. This initiative will help drive international focus and action to ensure the international community is doing everything possible to prevent nuclear weapons, materials, and knowledge from reaching the hands of terrorists.

With regard to our own efforts, our comprehensive approach for addressing WMD terrorism hinges on six objectives, and we will work across all objectives simultaneously to maximize our ability to eliminate the threat.

Determine terrorists' intentions, capabilities, and plans to develop or acquire WMD. We need to understand and assess the credibility of threat reporting and provide technical assessments of terrorists' WMD capabilities.
Deny terrorists access to the materials, expertise, and other enabling capabilities required to develop WMD. We have an aggressive, global approach to deny our enemies access to WMD-related materials (with a particular focus on weapons-usable fissile materials), fabrication expertise, methods of transport, sources of funds, and other capabilities that facilitate the execution of a WMD attack. In addition to building upon existing initiatives to secure materials, we are developing innovative approaches that blend classic counterproliferation, nonproliferation, and counterterrorism efforts.
Deter terrorists from employing WMD. A new deterrence calculus combines the need to deter terrorists and supporters from contemplating a WMD attack and, failing that, to dissuade them from actually conducting an attack. Traditional threats may not work because terrorists show a wanton disregard for the lives of innocents and in some cases for their own lives. We require a range of deterrence strategies that are tailored to the situation and the adversary. We will make clear that terrorists and those who aid or sponsor a WMD attack would face the prospect of an overwhelming response to any use of such weapons. We will seek to dissuade attacks by improving our ability to mitigate the effects of a terrorist attack involving WMD - to limit or prevent large-scale casualties, economic disruption, or panic. Finally, we will ensure that our capacity to determine the source of any attack is well-known, and that our determination to respond overwhelmingly to any attack is never in doubt.
Detect and disrupt terrorists' attempted movement of WMD-related materials, weapons, and personnel. We will expand our global capability for detecting illicit materials, weapons, and personnel transiting abroad or heading for the United States or U.S. interests overseas. We will use our global partnerships, international agreements, and ongoing border security and interdiction efforts. We also will continue to work with countries to enact and enforce strict penalties for WMD trafficking and other suspect WMD-related activities.
Prevent and respond to a WMD-related terrorist attack. Once the possibility of a WMD attack against the United States has been detected, we will seek to contain, interdict, and eliminate the threat. We will continue to develop requisite capabilities to eliminate the possibility of a WMD operation and to prevent a possible follow-on attack. We will prepare ourselves for possible WMD incidents by developing capabilities to manage the range of consequences that may result from such an attack against the United States or our interests around the world.
Define the nature and source of a terrorist-employed WMD device. Should a WMD terrorist attack occur, the rapid identification of the source and perpetrator of an attack will enable our response efforts and may be critical in disrupting follow-on attacks. We will develop the capability to assign responsibility for the intended or actual use of WMD via accurate attribution - the rapid fusion of technical forensic data with intelligence and law enforcement information.
Deny terrorists the support and sanctuary of rogue states. The United States and its allies and partners in the War on Terror make no distinction between those who commit acts of terror and those who support and harbor terrorists. Any government that chooses to be an ally of terror has chosen to be an enemy of freedom, justice, and peace. The world will hold those regimes to account. To break the bonds between rogue states and our terrorist enemies, we will work to disrupt the flow of resources from states to terrorists while simultaneously working to end state sponsorship of terrorism.

End state sponsorship of terrorism. State sponsors are a critical resource for our terrorist enemies, often providing funds, weapons, training, safe passage, and sanctuary. Some of these countries have developed or have the capability to develop WMD and other destabilizing technologies that could fall into the hands of terrorists. The United States currently designates five state sponsors of terrorism: Iran, Syria, Sudan, North Korea, and Cuba. We will maintain sanctions against them and promote their international isolation until they end their support for terrorists, including the provision of sanctuary. To further isolate these regimes and persuade other states not to sponsor terror, we will use a range of tools and efforts to delegitimate terrorism as an instrument of statecraft. Any act of international terrorism, whether committed by a state or individual, is reprehensible, a threat to international peace and security, and should be unequivocally and uniformly rejected. Similarly, states that harbor and assist terrorists are as guilty as the terrorists, and they will be held to account.

Iran remains the most active state sponsor of international terrorism. Through its Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps and Ministry of Intelligence and Security, the regime in Tehran plans terrorist operations and supports groups such as Lebanese Hizballah, Hamas, and Palestine Islamic Jihad (PIJ). Iran also remains unwilling to account for and bring to justice senior al-Qaida members it detained in 2003. Most troubling is the potential WMD-terrorism nexus that emanates from Tehran. Syria also is a significant state sponsor of terrorism and thus a priority for concern. The regime in Damascus supports and provides haven to Hizballah, Hamas, and PIJ. We will continue to stand with the people of Iran and Syria against the regimes that oppress them at home and sponsor terror abroad.

While Iranian and Syrian terrorist activities are especially worrisome, we are pressing all state sponsors to take the steps that are required to have state sponsorship designation rescinded. Each case is unique, and our approach to each will be tailored accordingly. Moreover, we never foreclose future membership in the coalition against tyranny and terror. The designation of Iraq as a state sponsor was rescinded in 2004 as it transitioned to democracy, ceased its terrorist support, and became an ally in the War on Terror. Similarly, the United States in June 2006 rescinded the designation of Libya, which has renounced terrorism and since September 11 has provided excellent cooperation to the United States and other members of the international community in response to the new global threats we face. Libya can serve as a model for states who wish to rejoin the community of nations by rejecting terror.
Disrupt the flow of resources from rogue states to terrorists. Until we can eliminate state sponsorship of terror, we will disrupt and deny the flow of support from states to terrorists. We will continue to create and strengthen international will to interdict material support, akin to our efforts in the Proliferation Security Initiative - a global effort to stop shipments of WMD, their delivery systems, and related material. We will build international cooperation to financially isolate rogue states and their terrorist proxies. We also will continue to expose the vehicles and fronts that states use to support their terrorist surrogates.
Deny terrorists control of any nation they would use as a base and launching pad for terror. Our terrorist enemies are striving to claim a strategic country as a haven for terror. From this base, they could destabilize the Middle East and strike America and other free nations with ever-increasing violence. This we can never allow. Our enemies had established a sanctuary in Afghanistan prior to Operation Enduring Freedom, and today terrorists see Iraq as the central front of their fight against the United States. This is why success in helping the Afghan and Iraqi peoples forge effective democracies is vital. We will continue to prevent terrorists from exploiting ungoverned or under-governed areas as safehavens - secure spaces that allow our enemies to plan, organize, train, and prepare for operations. Ultimately, we will eliminate these havens altogether.

Eliminate physical safehavens. Physical sanctuaries can stretch across an entire sovereign state, be limited to specific ungoverned or ill-governed areas in an otherwise functioning state, or cross national borders. In some cases the government wants to exercise greater effective sovereignty over its lands and maintain control within its borders but lacks the necessary capacity. We will strengthen the capacity of such War on Terror partners to reclaim full control of their territory through effective police, border, and other security forces as well as functioning systems of justice. To further counter terrorist exploitation of under-governed lands, we will promote effective economic development to help ensure long-term stability and prosperity. In failing states or states emerging from conflict, the risks are significant. Spoilers can take advantage of instability to create conditions terrorists can exploit. We will continue to work with foreign partners and international organizations to help prevent conflict and respond to state failure by building foreign capacity for peace operations, reconstruction, and stabilization so that countries in transition can reach a sustainable path to peace, democracy, and prosperity. Where physical havens cross national boundaries, we will continue to work with the affected countries to help establish effective cross-border control. Yet some countries will be reluctant to fulfill their sovereign responsibilities to combat terrorist-related activities within their borders. In addition to cooperation and sustained diplomacy, we will continue to partner with the international community to persuade states to meet their obligations to combat terrorism and deny safehaven under U.N. Security Council Resolution 1373.
Yet safehavens are not just limited to geographic territories. They also can be non-physical or virtual, existing within legal, cyber, and financial systems.

Legal safehavens. Some legal systems lack adequate procedural, substantive, and international assistance laws that enable effective investigation, prosecution, and extradition of terrorists. Such gaps offer a haven in which terrorists and their organizations can operate free from fear of prosecution. In the United States we have developed a domestic legal system that supports effective investigation and prosecution of terrorist activities while preserving individual privacy, the First Amendment rights of association, religious freedom, free speech, and other civil rights. We will continue to work with foreign partners to build their legal capacity to investigate, prosecute, and assist in the foreign prosecution of the full range of terrorist activities - from provision of material support to conspiracy to operational planning to a completed act of terrorism.
Cyber safehavens. The Internet provides an inexpensive, anonymous, geographically unbounded, and largely unregulated virtual haven for terrorists. Our enemies use the Internet to develop and disseminate propaganda, recruit new members, raise and transfer funds, train members on weapons use and tactics, and plan operations. Terrorist organizations can use virtual safehavens based anywhere in the world, regardless of where their members or operatives are located. Use of the Internet, however, creates opportunities for us to exploit. To counter terrorist use of the Internet as a virtual sanctuary, we will discredit terrorist propaganda by promoting truthful and peaceful messages. We will seek ultimately to deny the Internet to the terrorists as an effective safehaven for their propaganda, proselytizing, recruitment, fund-raising, training, and operational planning.
Financial safehavens. Financial systems are used by terrorist organizations as a fiscal sanctuary in which to store and transfer the funds that support their survival and operations. Terrorist organizations use a variety of financial systems, including formal banking, wire transfers, debit and other stored value cards, online value storage and value transfer systems, the informal hawala system, and cash couriers. Terrorist organizations may be able to take advantage of such financial systems either as the result of willful complicity by financial institutions or as the result of poor oversight and monitoring practices. Domestically, we have hardened our financial systems against terrorist abuse by promulgating effective regulations, requiring financial institutions to report suspicious transactions, and building effective public/private partnerships. We will continue to work with foreign partners to ensure they develop and implement similar regulations, requirements, and partnerships with their financial institutions. We also will continue to use the domestic and international designation and targeted sanctions regimes provided by, among other mechanisms, Executive Order 13224, USA PATRIOT Act Section 311, and United Nations Security Council Resolution 1267 and subsequent resolutions. These tools identify and isolate those actors who form part of terrorist networks or facilitate their activities.

Posted by: JakeD | May 19, 2008 4:54 PM | Report abuse

If you're sadistic, you'll definitely relish Obama's fulfillment of Carter's second term!

Go Obamarter '08

Posted by: theaz | May 19, 2008 4:53 PM | Report abuse

Hey George-know a 'terrorist' state when you see one? ...
-------
Yes, The Bush Administration has been pretty close to a "Terrorist" state, but people still talk to the USA, thankfully.

Must be nice to cherry pick what you "remember" - try remembering the other 99% of history.

Posted by: George | May 19, 2008 4:52 PM | Report abuse

James:

If it sounds sexually perverted, then you can be sure that I didn't post it ; )

Posted by: JakeD | May 19, 2008 4:52 PM | Report abuse

AND YOU THINK THE GOP IS PROTECTING US NOW!

I have four important questions for Bush, McCain and the GOP!

1. Is Iran stronger or weaker since Bush's invasions of Iraq?

2. Has Osama bin Laden been killed or captured since Bush's invasion of Iraq?

3. Are we paying less for gas now or before Bush's invasion of Iraq?

4. Is our economy better of now or before Bush's invasion of Iraq?

If you answer these questions truthfully, is there any way you want to continue down the same foreign policy blunders of the last seven years?

This is a not a difficult question, most 3rd graders could answer this one.

Posted by: Capt. Smash | May 19, 2008 4:51 PM | Report abuse

Any word on whether Condi Rice and Robert Gates have resigned yet? The president has explained to us that talking to people we have disagreements with is the same thing as appeasement. These two have advised us to do just that.

Posted by: Mark | May 19, 2008 4:51 PM | Report abuse

Anon, then Obama should say so. He should qualify his earlier statements. It would be prudent and wise to do it, but for some inexplicable reason he won't.

Maybe it's because he thinks talking is great all by itself. If so, he's wrong.

Posted by: Anonymous | May 19, 2008 4:51 PM | Report abuse

I am not a david, nor a robbins. That question?

The "reorganization of the US Government" simply concentrated power in one man (Cheney - Bush is an impotent infant with neither brains nor the ability to think logically) as opposed to making it more efficient. Security in the US against OUTSIDE threats is actually WORSE since the changes, the FBI and CIA and State and all the other players are STILL not talking to each other and STILL carrying on their little turf wars, and the "Intelligence Tsar" is a toothless buffoon.

"Security" in the US - defined as spying on US Citizens has become radically more intrusive to no gain, and there are absolutely NO controls over Executive branch agencies by outside authorities, while the principle of the "Unitary Executive Branch" has neutered Congress and both Federal law enforcement agencies and regulatory agencies, while at the same time totally ignoring and violating the US Constitution. High Crimes and Misdemeanors have been committed by the Executive Branch and yet there is no accountability at all.

Bush and Cheney together constitute a tin-horn petty dictatorship. If they had a political agenda, as opposed to a financial one, the nation would no longer be a Republic. Instead of the possibly temporary change of our form of government, it would become permanent.

Now - without peeking at the talking points from the White House - can you or anyone ELSE tell me why there have been no further attacks against the US in nearly 7 years? I'd really like to know! And again - US security is a total joke, so that CAN'T be the answer.

Posted by: Nofluer | May 19, 2008 4:50 PM | Report abuse

negotiate, negotiate, negotiate..What should we negotiate? Learned Obama supporters, what should we negotiate? NEGOTIATE FOR WHAT?

Posted by: voteforamerica | May 19, 2008 4:41 PM
______________________________

You and JakeD for a pair of size 8 Nikes!!!
Tell them we'll throw in JakeD's mother a roll of toilet paper!

Posted by: harried | May 19, 2008 4:50 PM | Report abuse

I wish I were embedded in the deep trenches of the US Military on a hot sultry night.

Posted by: JakeD | May 19, 2008 4:49 PM | Report abuse

How could the US Army have perpetrated Abu Ghraib without inviting me to participate?

Inviting me to participate as counsel for the abused prisoners, I mean.
------

Sicko's like this is what you'll get in office, if you vote for McCain.

Posted by: Franky | May 19, 2008 4:49 PM | Report abuse

Hey George-know a 'terrorist' state when you see one? I doubt it. If the idiot arabs would leave Israel alone, there would be peace in the Mid East. Do you have a clue as to what Israel has to deal with from the arab/muslims? Rocket attacks 24/7 from Gaza. Suicide murders. Have you ever seen an Israeli with bombs strapped on? NO. And you never will....The so called Palestinians have never negotiated in good faith. Remember Munich 1972, George? Remember Entebbe? Remember Germany 1935-1945? Joey says: Screw you and yours George

Posted by: Joey Pants | May 19, 2008 4:48 PM | Report abuse

dyinglikeflies: "He should just admit he made a mistake and that he realizes direct unconditional talks without an agenda would be a mistake."
---------------------------------------
He never said that. Meeting without pre-conditions is not the same as "direct unconditional talks without an agenda." I understand you don't support Obama, but twisting words in this way is simply irresponsible.

I guess this is my chance to rant "Mccain wants to go to war for 100 years!!! You hear that! 100 Years of War if we elect Mccain!"

Posted by: Anon | May 19, 2008 4:48 PM | Report abuse

In this world, you don't get what you deserve, you get what you negotiate.

Posted by: Obama'08 | May 19, 2008 4:48 PM | Report abuse

How could the US Army have perpetrated Abu Ghraib without inviting me to participate?

Inviting me to participate as counsel for the abused prisoners, I mean.

Posted by: JakeD | May 19, 2008 4:47 PM | Report abuse

"Obama fails to understand basic realities of international relations."

This from a man who thinks the Shiite Iranians are arming the Sunni Al Qaida in Iraq. And that AQI, which comprises 5% of the insurgency, would "surely take over Iraq" if we left - something no respected military analyst thinks is remotely plausible. And who cheerled us into this debacle in the first place.

Well, maybe the Republican base will fall for it. They still think Saddam attacked us on 9/11, after all. The thinking 2/3 of America has had enough of this bs though.

Posted by: Mark | May 19, 2008 4:47 PM | Report abuse

Wow, how dare he attack Obama's positions. Next thing you know McCain is going to be branded a war-monger, racist, and part of the right wing conspiracy. Ha!Ha!
Obama's hipocracy is mounting and Americans will hopefully figure out that he is nothing more than hot-air. He gave a stirring speech today referring to North Korea and Iran as tiny countries, oops, tiny as in Germany, or Japan, or Italy, or vietnam, or Iraq. Visit this site, they have the most comprehensive series of posts analyzing Barack Obama's stated foreign policy positions:
http://politicallydrunk.blogspot.com

Posted by: JB | May 19, 2008 4:47 PM | Report abuse

McCain is being willfully dense here. He knows what Obama means. A willingness to negotiate is not weakness. If there's no talking there's no solution other than war. Since we're in a standoff with Iran at this juncture (being totally committed elsewhere), war is off the table, and we might as well talk in hopes that we can negotiate Iran off their current path. If we can't succeed at that, fine, but it's worth a try.

It's not like we're doing much else to solve it now except yell at the sky.

Posted by: Max | May 19, 2008 4:46 PM | Report abuse

Man do I enjoy watching the republican base squirm. Their becoming the minority on almost every important issue out there. They can't even decide what position their party stands for anymore. Ahh bliss!

Posted by: bliss | May 19, 2008 4:46 PM | Report abuse

Why does not /McCain/Bush2 just shut up about Obama-Bush2 has no chance in hell at the presdinecy and he did not win the Vietnam war for America...

Posted by: Asim, San Antonio | May 19, 2008 4:46 PM | Report abuse

I thought the purpose of Homeland Security was to secure the borders after 9/11.

If there is another attack - then the blame is on George Bush and his big government agencies.

And JakeD - you sound like you should be marching in a parade somewhere with a mesh tuxedo on.

Posted by: James Laughlin | May 19, 2008 4:45 PM | Report abuse

Obama insists on comparing himself to John Kennedy. Kennedy was a Democrat; that is all he has in common with Obama. As he proved in the Cuban missile crisis when he ordered the US Navy to halt Soviet ships on the open seas and submit to US inspection for missiles- all in violation of international law- Kennedy was not afraid to use force to further US interests. Kennedy fought for his country in World War Two- Obama is a retired community organizer. Whatever that is. The Democrat party has moved way to the left since Kennedy's time and can no longer be trusted to defend the United States.

Posted by: mhr | May 19, 2008 4:31 PM

AND YOU THINK THE GOP IS PROTECTING US NOW!

I have four important questions for Bush, McCain and the GOP!

1. Is Iran stronger or weaker since Bush's invasions of Iraq?

2. Has Osama bin Laden been killed or captured since Bush's invasion of Iraq?

3. Are we paying less for gas now or before Bush's invasion of Iraq?

4. Is our economy better of now or before Bush's invasion of Iraq?

If you answer these questions truthfully, is there any way you want to continue down the same foreign policy blunders of the last seven years?

This is a not a difficult question, most 3rd graders could answer this one.

Posted by: Anonymous | May 19, 2008 4:45 PM | Report abuse

I agree with Bush. We should never negotiate with rogue states. We should just pretend that they're not there and maybe they'll go away. LOL What's there to negotiate about anyway? We don't like them so we're not speaking to them. That'll show them!

Posted by: me | May 19, 2008 4:45 PM | Report abuse

Joe:

Didn't you post the following today (May 19, 2008) at 4:16 PM?

"Iran's leader is entrenched as about as much as he can be. No meeting with the POTUS would change this, and its a lack of world insight to believe it would do so.

Clearly McCain does not have the knowledge to be a world leader."

Posted by: JakeD | May 19, 2008 4:45 PM | Report abuse

He may well be the first European style Socialist elected president.

Posted by: mike | May 19, 2008 4:42 PM
---

Anything would be better than 4 more years of Fascists Republicans.

Posted by: George | May 19, 2008 4:44 PM | Report abuse

Iran is behind many deaths of our American soldiers in Iraq.
Posted by: Mary | May 19, 2008 4:19 PM
------

Republicans like Bush and McCain are behind MANY more deaths of our American soliders.

Posted by: Sally | May 19, 2008 4:32 PM
=========================================
Iran is behind many deaths of our American soldiers in Iraq.

Posted by: voteforamerica | May 19, 2008 4:43 PM | Report abuse

When McCain wrapped up the GOP nomination, I felt that the worst that could happen if he were elected President would be 4-8 years of continued status quo economic and foreign policies. Not a good thing, but possibly not too scary.

I was wrong. McCain is morphing into Bush ala' 2002-04, exacerbating foreign policy tensions and collecting the resulting votes. His integrity has vanished.

Be afraid of this man. Be VERY afraid.

Posted by: FrankUSM | May 19, 2008 4:43 PM | Report abuse

My friends, there's a new energy in the country. A yearning for a new direction. Like Iran!
With John McCain protecting Americans, our nuclear arsenal will be FIRED UP and READY TO GO!
I promise you this, my friends - anyone ringing my phone at 3AM will be met immediately with overwhelming force.

John McCain! Ready on Day One to fight World War Three!

Posted by: bourassa | May 19, 2008 4:42 PM | Report abuse

"The significant problems we face cannot be solved at the same level of thinking we were at when we created them."

--Albert Einstein

Posted by: AE | May 19, 2008 4:42 PM | Report abuse

Senator Obama appears to be very European in his approach as he wishes to engage in a dialogue. generally that means talking without end allowing the Iranians to continue thie rnuclear program unabated. Meanwhile the Iranians kill American soliders and Marines without fear of retribution.

He may well be the first European style Socialist elected president.

Posted by: mike | May 19, 2008 4:42 PM | Report abuse

Let me see if I understand this...Obama saying he would sit down and actually have a dialogue with Iran is reckless. John McCain singing bomb, bomb bomb, bomb, bomb Iran is not. OK, so much for my self imposed promise not to hurl insults at the stupid old geezer. No wonder republicans hate him, he's an idiot.

Posted by: pj451 | May 19, 2008 4:32 PM
______________________________

Being an Idiot does not seem to bother NEOCONS. After all Bush is not exactly top shelf smarts, right. The important thing does seem to be a willingness to bomb, bomb, bomb,,,steal,steal,steal,,,torture, torture, torture, with some airport tap dancing thrown in now and then.

Posted by: harried | May 19, 2008 4:41 PM | Report abuse

I prefer Boys to Men.

The band silly. What were you thinking?

Posted by: jakeD | May 19, 2008 4:41 PM | Report abuse

Obama states:
Obama went on, "Iran, they spend one one-hundredth of what we spend on the military. If Iran ever tried to pose a serious threat to us, they wouldn't stand a chance.

They don't need a military to threaten other countries they already are threatening other countries by there excessive support of terrorist organizations throughout the country! You don't need a large military to be a large threat. Hidden terrorist organizations are the large threat now. We are not fighting wars in a structure similar to 30/40 years ago.
This just goes to show how Obama's ignorance in military and diplomatic affairs.

Posted by: mes | May 19, 2008 4:41 PM | Report abuse

negotiate, negotiate, negotiate..What should we negotiate? Learned Obama supporters, what should we negotiate? NEGOTIATE FOR WHAT?

Posted by: voteforamerica | May 19, 2008 4:41 PM | Report abuse

Let's see- should I be cautious about a country which has had as a slogan for 30 years "Death To America", which sponsored the creation of Hezbollah which in turn killed over 250 Marines, which blew up an Israeli embassy in Argentina killing scores of innocent civilians, which has a leader who boasts of its atomic development program, who declares that Israel will be wiped off the map and that the Holocaust never happened, and which is allied with and financially supports Syria as it employs nuclear engineers for its own weapons program, and which has a missile program that allows targeting of Europe, and which on a daily basis provides the roadside bombs which kill American boys in action in Iraq?

NAHHHHHH.

Obama looks like an idiot on this one. He should just admit he made a mistake and that he realizes direct unconditional talks without an agenda would be a mistake. If he doesn't have the courage and judgment to say that, he shouldn't be elected dogcatcher, let alone President.

Posted by: dyinglikeflies | May 19, 2008 4:41 PM | Report abuse

Joe:

Just as "clearly" it seems you don't know that the Supreme Leader in Iran is Ali Khamenei not the "President".

-----

Clearly you're talking out of your @ss, try reading my post again and again until you understand I didn't say what you think.

Posted by: Joe | May 19, 2008 4:41 PM | Report abuse

I would like the situation to become less dangerous for our troops, but I hope we keep a base in Iraq until the end of time. Too much bad going on over there.

Posted by: Forever | May 19, 2008 4:41 PM | Report abuse

Under a McCain Administration, the State Department -- on "Day 1" -- will create an Office Of Strongly Worded Statements. From this office will come a myriad of strongly worded statements filled with words like "deplorable," "deeply troubling," "concerned," and "considering all alternatives."

I hope to be able to lead this new, "get tough" policy.

Posted by: Karen Hughes | May 19, 2008 4:40 PM | Report abuse

Bomb bomb bomb, bomb bomb Iran. Yes! Let's bomb those crazy Sunnis in Iran! They're just a bunch of Arabs like Bin Laden!

Yes - all tongue in cheek. McCain needed to do something to replace the headlines about another corrupt adviser resigning...

McCain = Bush = Incompetence.

Posted by: Martiniano | May 19, 2008 4:39 PM | Report abuse

John McCain and the Economy:- Straight Talk, Real Solutions

Should the recession persist in its refusal to disarm, then yes, our nuclear strikeforce is one option at the President's disposal ... and John McCain will not flinch in his duty to protect Americans from the menace of Islamo-stagflation.
Because he is resolute, damn it. Not a white-flag waver.

My friends, I promise you this: John McCain will never surrender until Iraq is free of WMD!


John McCain '08! Because when fear brings Americans together, the whole military-industrial complex benefits!

Posted by: bourassa | May 19, 2008 4:38 PM | Report abuse

"Insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results."

--Albert Einstein

Posted by: AE | May 19, 2008 4:36 PM | Report abuse

I have four important questions for Bush, McCain and the GOP!

1. Is Iran stronger or weaker since Bush's invasions of Iraq?

2. Has Osama bin Laden been killed or captured since Bush's invasion of Iraq?

3. Are we paying less for gas now or before Bush's invasion of Iraq?

4. Is our economy better of now or before Bush's invasion of Iraq?

If you answer these questions truthfully, is there any way you want to continue down the same foreign policy blunders of the last seven years?

This is a not a difficult question, most 3rd graders could answer this one.

Posted by: Capt. Smash | May 19, 2008 4:35 PM | Report abuse

John McCain '08! Ask not what your country can do for you, ask what John McCain can do for your company!

Four More Wars! 100 More Years! John McCain for President!

Posted by: bourassa | May 19, 2008 4:35 PM | Report abuse

Methink an understanding of your enemies' concerns is a position of stenght. Apart from this not meaning naivety by any stretch of (Republican)imagination, toeing such a line as Obama advocates will mean that America is ready to do things differently before expecting different results form the Bush years. For God-know- how-long, the World have looked on as the Republican leadership threaten to 'go smoke out the enemies.' Yet, nothing, no arm bearing terrorrist, but the ordinary American, nay the world at large, is getting smoked in after getting suck into needless battles in the Middle East! To say the man curently eyeing the White House on the ticket of The Republican party is naive is to engage in the biggest understatement of the century. I wil be naive to say so!

Posted by: Oladini Oyebadejo | May 19, 2008 4:34 PM | Report abuse

David S. Robins:

I take it you are different than David D. Robins?

Nofluer:

Well for starters, the terrorists find it far easier to attack us over there than plan and execute another attack here. We have, in fact, killed lots of terrorists over there or have them locked up. In addition, the Bush Administration has made it more difficult for those left to carry out another 9/11, from spying to finances all the way to airline regulations and port security, we have completely reorganized government to counter the threat. The long term solution, of course, is democracy through-out the Middle East. If you want more details, try looking here:

http://www.whitehouse.gov/nsc/nsct/2006/

Now, can you answer MY question?

Posted by: JakeD | May 19, 2008 4:34 PM | Report abuse

MHR... I believe Kennedy was a bit of a supply-sider as well. Barak, on the other hand...

Posted by: PK | May 19, 2008 4:34 PM | Report abuse

Mary and Killbuzz: it is precisely the evil tyrants that it is most important to talk to. any fool can talk to his friends. how exactly does not talking to them punish them? to the contrary, it helps tyrants rally their citizens against an evil US. we are handing them propaganda victories by ignoring them, not by talking to them. and you honor the troops by personally delivering the message to Iran that we are prepared to do whatever it takes to prevent you from going nuclear, or arming Iraqi's or whatever. Diplomacy is not "nice making" The toughest messages are often those delivered over a table with your enemy in the opposite chair. No one is as impressed with a TV soundbite delivered half way around the world, which is all Bush and McCain think we have to work with.

Posted by: JoeT1 | May 19, 2008 4:33 PM | Report abuse

Iran is behind many deaths of our American soldiers in Iraq.
Posted by: Mary | May 19, 2008 4:19 PM
------

Republicans like Bush and McCain are behind MANY more deaths of our American soliders.

Posted by: Sally | May 19, 2008 4:32 PM | Report abuse

Let me see if I understand this...Obama saying he would sit down and actually have a dialogue with Iran is reckless. John McCain singing bomb, bomb bomb, bomb, bomb Iran is not. OK, so much for my self imposed promise not to hurl insults at the stupid old geezer. No wonder republicans hate him, he's an idiot.

Posted by: pj451 | May 19, 2008 4:32 PM | Report abuse

And, thanks to the Guardians of Liberty who never sleep, there are no wild tigers on the loose within 10,000 miles of our shores. Do you think there would be no wild tigers on the loose here since 9/11 if not for the efforts of the Bush Administration?

And let's not forget sharks. There have been no shark attacks on the land mass of the US since the Bush Administration pledged to fight terrorism.

John McCain has promised to continue the fight against terrorist tigers and shark sleeper cells.

Can Obama make a similar claim?

Posted by: JakeD | May 19, 2008 4:32 PM | Report abuse

"An appeaser is one who feeds a crocodile, hoping it will eat him last."

Winston Churchill

Posted by: tropicalfolk | May 19, 2008 4:32 PM | Report abuse

http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/babylonbeyond/2008/05/iraq-the-elusiv.html

Iraq: The elusive Iranian weapons

"There was something interesting missing from Maj. Gen. Kevin Bergner's introductory remarks to journalists at his regular news briefing in Baghdad on Wednesday: the word "Iran," or any form of it. It was especially striking as Bergner, the U.S. military spokesman here, announced the extraordinary list of weapons and munitions that have been uncovered in recent weeks...

Among other things, Bergner cited 20,000 "items of ammunition, explosives and weapons" reported by Iraqi forces in the central city of Karbala; an additional Karbala cache containing 570 explosive devices, nine mortars, four anti-aircraft missiles, and 45 RPGs; and in the southern city of Basra alone, 39 mortar tubes, 1,800 mortars and artillery rounds, 600 rockets, and 387 roadside bombs.

Not once did Bergner point the finger at Iran for any of these weapons and munitions, which is a striking change from just a couple of weeks ago when U.S. military officials here and at the Pentagon were saying that caches found in Basra in particular had revealed Iranian-made arms manufactured as recently as this year. They say the majority of rockets being fired at U.S. bases, including Baghdad's Green Zone, are launched by militiamen receiving training, arms and other aid from Iran.
Today brought fresh attacks...

...neither the United States nor Iraq has displayed any of the alleged arms to the public or press, and lately it is looking less likely they will. U.S. military officials said it was up to the Iraqis to show the items; Iraqi officials lately have backed off the accusations against Iran.

A plan to show some alleged Iranian-supplied explosives to journalists last week in Karbala and then destroy them was canceled after the United States realized none of them was from Iran...

When U.S. explosives experts went to investigate, they discovered they were not Iranian after all."
__________________

UPDATE: Vice-President Cheney, asked about the government's inability to produce evidence of Iranian weapons, responded: "So what?"

Sen. John McCain, GOP presidential nominee, commented: "Bomb, bomb, bomb, bomb, bomb Iran!"

Posted by: oddball | May 19, 2008 4:31 PM | Report abuse

Anyone who goes around chanting "Bomb, Bomb, Bomb, Bomb, Bomb Iran," and talks about being in Iraq for a hundred years has no business calling anyone else reckless. He, his buddy Bush and the rest of the neocons are the poster children of recklessness.

Posted by: Sara B. | May 19, 2008 4:31 PM | Report abuse

Obama insists on comparing himself to John Kennedy. Kennedy was a Democrat; that is all he has in common with Obama. As he proved in the Cuban missile crisis when he ordered the US Navy to halt Soviet ships on the open seas and submit to US inspection for missiles- all in violation of international law- Kennedy was not afraid to use force to further US interests. Kennedy fought for his country in World War Two- Obama is a retired community organizer. Whatever that is. The Democrat party has moved way to the left since Kennedy's time and can no longer be trusted to defend the United States.

Posted by: mhr | May 19, 2008 4:31 PM | Report abuse

So, instead of talking McCain would rather continue with Bush's policy!?

The Bush policy has done the following for America:
* Inspired countless people to become "Terrorists".
* Created International distain for all things American.
* Greatly reduced the freedoms of the average American.
* Greatly reduced the security of the average American.
* Greatly reduced the finances of the average American.
* Enriched Republican Leadership and the "Good Ol' Boys Club".
* Used Government power to attack non-Republicans.
* Divided this great nation against itself.
* Government communication with public is based on what Republicans want reality to be, instead of the truth.


Why does McCain want to do this again?? WMDs? Terrorists? Oil? Israel? Crusade? Saudi friends? Rove said so?

Posted by: Franky | May 19, 2008 4:31 PM | Report abuse

Dialog with our enemies; you know we use to do that once upon a time in this country.
When we had competent leadership in the White House we always tried diplomacy. Do you remember when?

FDR talked to Russia - Murderess Dictator Stalin to defeat Hitler
Kennedy talked to - Nikita S. Khrushchev removing missile bases from Cuba
Nixon talked to China - Communist threat; so we could end the war in Vietnam
Regan talked to the USSR - Evil Empire that wanted to bury our children.

Diplomacy, diplomacy you see it is always cheaper to talk first before you bomb and lay waste to our enemies. Just think we may have been able to save over 4000 American lives in Iraq, and saved 12 billion a month if we kept talking.

We can not force our ideology on other countries beliefs; it has been proven trough out history! If you want to use nukes or gasoline fire bombs and wipe out most of the population like we did in Germany and Japan it may have worked then, but now the rest of the world would think we are insane!

The one thing about Saddam Hussein he took no S**T from any of these people that are controlling Iraq now! Yes he was a nasty dictator that used the chemical weapons that the US gave him back in the 80's to kill Kurdish threats and Iranian Solders. You see Saddam Hussein seen these people as threats to has regime and government, he knew how to handle these people. Further, Iran was scared to death of him and did not dare to step foot Iraq. We could have used Saddam Hussein as a puppet if we were smart! We could have paid him to do our dirty work with Al Qaeda and Iran like we did in 80's when Regan was president. Bush does not know how to think on that level he is to arrogant and stupid to know he had everything going for him after 9/11.

You see by keeping Saddam Hussein in power until we got off of fossil fuels would have been the smart and prudent thing to do. We could have positioned ourselves to deal with him on another level at a different time. Bush just made the most bone-headed foreign policy mistake in our countries history hopefully the next president can get us out of this mess.

Obama 08

Posted by: Capt. Smash | May 19, 2008 4:30 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: Nuff said about obama | May 19, 2008 4:30 PM | Report abuse

McCain is easy to define you know the Straight Talk Express!

1.Your sons will get drafted for war with Iran, this how we get out of Iraq.

2.$12.00 a gallon gasoline for your Trucks and SUV's, more wars for oil.

3.Your homes will loose 50% more of there value, that's your dumb fault you bought it you can loose it.

4.Father of the next great Depression in America

5.If you get sick that's your fault. No Health Care not the Governments Job.

6.Pardons Bush and Channey for lying about WMD's and Al-Qaeda in Iraq

Posted by: Capt. smash | May 19, 2008 4:29 PM | Report abuse

You can't listen to the talking heads on tv on this issue, they are all under a gag order from the Israeli Lobby. One more area where we the people are not in control. The whole idea of fearing Iran is a myth put on us by the media.

You can talk to ANYONE without damage, that's a fact. It is amazing how Americans latch onto fear while never feeling one bit of empathy for the fear WE put in other people's hearts. We bomb in civilian areas, and the bombed are supposed to just live with it. We empower Israel to kill children and nobody here empathizes with the murdered children. Their parents are supposed to appreciate Israel is a democracy of sorts I guess. Americans use phony fear to justify killing all over the world, and none of these peoples is supposed to mind. What bull.

Posted by: CK | May 19, 2008 4:29 PM | Report abuse

Iran is behind many deaths of our American soldiers in Iraq.
Posted by: Mary | May 19, 2008 4:19 PM
______________________________________

Do you remember what the justification for sending them to Iraq was?
Do you recall the first justification for keeping them there after "MISSION ACCOMPLISHED"? The second?, the third?, the fourth?,,,etc? The inSurge, outSurge Blue Serge?
Mary, please SHUT UP!!!!!

Posted by: harried | May 19, 2008 4:28 PM | Report abuse

Obama DOES show complete recklessness and lack of judgement. After all, he voted to get us into a war with ill-defined consequences... oh no, wait that's the other guy - McCAin.
Oh the beauty of always being on the attack! McCain for president!

Posted by: Doug | May 19, 2008 4:28 PM | Report abuse

Huffington Post Reports:

One of Sen. Hillary Clinton's top financial supporters offered $1 million to the Young Democrats of America during a phone conversation in which he also pressed for the organization's two uncommitted superdelegates to endorse the New York Democrat, a high-ranking official with YDA told The Huffington Post.

Haim Saban, the billionaire entertainment magnate and longtime Clinton supporter, denied the allegation. But four independent sources said that just before the North Carolina and Indiana primaries, Saban called YDA President David Hardt and offered what was perceived as a lucrative proposal: $1 million would be made available for the group if Hardt and the organization's other uncommitted superdelegate backed Clinton.

Contacted about the report, Saban, initially very friendly, became curt. "Not true," he said, "it's simply not true." He declined to elaborate. Did he talk to the YDA superdelegate? "I talk to many, many superdelegates. Some I don't even remember their names." Did he propose any financial transaction? "I have never offered them or anybody any money" in exchange for support or a vote, he said. The Clinton campaign did not return a request for comment.

Posted by: Capt.Smash | May 19, 2008 4:27 PM | Report abuse

David D. Robbins Jr.:

We'll have to agree to disagree whether it was coicidence or causation then : )

Posted by: JakeD | May 19, 2008 4:27 PM | Report abuse

Obama is grossly ignorant of international relations - that the Democratic Party will send this clown up as a candidate speaks volumes.

Posted by: RJD | May 19, 2008 4:26 PM | Report abuse

One of the most frightening things about McCain becoming President is that he very likely would attack Iran. GWBush simply makes empty threats because America lacks the military capability to start another war at this point. One of the strange things about Bush's obscene war is that he has made no serious effort to expand the size of our armed forces since 9/11. McCain would not repeat that grave mistake. He will greatly expand the forces, thereby enabling him to launch yet another insane war in the oil rich Middle East. Never mind that it would become an instant disaster putting Iraq in the shade. McCain is a military fanatic who still seeks revenge for what happened to him in Viet Nam which we lost. Americans should beware of letting someone like him into the White House.

Posted by: David S. Robins | May 19, 2008 4:26 PM | Report abuse

"David D. Robbins Jr.:

Did you think we would go EIGHT YEARS without another 9/11 attack (or worse)?"
>>>>>>>>>>>>>

So, why do you think we haven't been attacked since 9/11/01? (And PLEASE don't say it's because of the "security" that the Bush admin has set up. I'm kind of old and I don't think my heart could take the strain of laughing that hard.)

Posted by: Nofluer | May 19, 2008 4:26 PM | Report abuse

"Let us never negotiate out of fear. But let us never fear to negotiate." John F. Kennedy

Posted by: Tomas | May 19, 2008 4:25 PM | Report abuse

JakeD: I hear ya. We haven't had another major attack and that is commendable. But that still doesn't mean our foreign policy is the reason for it. We have remained free of another attack DESPITE our foreign policy.

Posted by: David D. Robbins Jr | May 19, 2008 4:24 PM | Report abuse

Even though McCain was widely ridiculed for claiming in Jordan that Iran trains al-Qaeda, even though he himself took it back on TV after Joe Lieberman corrected him, he continues to repeat this false claim to his base, on FOX News, and in his campaign statements.

It's even sillier than Bush's pre-Iraq war claims that Saddam was training al-Qaeda. At least Saddam was a Sunni. Not that McCain knows the difference.

Posted by: Gook | May 19, 2008 4:22 PM | Report abuse

Did I tell you about the time I gave my business card to John McCain under a bathroom stall at O'Hare?

Posted by: JakeD | May 19, 2008 4:21 PM | Report abuse

Ahmadenijad is no Gorbachev, Kim is no Chou En Lai, Saddam was no Sadat; Obama's statement show that he cannot recognize the difference between diabolical tyrants and men of honor. Negotiation is not a policy, it is a tactic. Obama's inability to recognize this makes him unfit for POTUS. I had a lot of hope for the kid, but he's too green and he's too liberal to lead the free world.

Posted by: Killbuzz | May 19, 2008 4:21 PM | Report abuse

Iran should establish preconditions before any negotiations begin with the US. Ending our slavish relationship with the terrorist state of Israel should be number one on the list. Imagine being in Ahmadinejad's place listening to two insane candidates for President using words and phrases like Bomb, Bomb, Bomb and "obliterate" makes Obama sound rational and a voice of reason by comparison. I hope McBush continues in this direction, bringing Israel to the forefront of an American Presidential election. It's long passed time for this "crazy aunt" to be brought from her attic room downstairs to the parlor for a full venting by the electorate as to methods and value of continued care and treatment.

Posted by: George | May 19, 2008 4:21 PM | Report abuse

Joe:

Just as "clearly" it seems you don't know that the Supreme Leader in Iran is Ali Khamenei not the "President".

Posted by: JakeD | May 19, 2008 4:21 PM | Report abuse

Response to: "Obama continues with his America-is-wrong-on-everything attitude."

Well, that depends on if you shut out everything else he ever says. That is certainly a very broad and subjective statement. Obama's campaign is about "Hope". What could be a better mantra? All he's saying is that there are a number of things America can do better. And we can. In this case, foreign policy is one of those big things. There's nothing wrong with a candidate pointing out the failings we have that he wants to try and correct. That's politics.

Posted by: David D. Robbins Jr | May 19, 2008 4:21 PM | Report abuse

Am I in the twilight zone? How stupid do Bush/McCain think we are? Bush's own Secretary of Defense, Robert Gates, thinks we should talk to Iran. Seriously, do Bush and McCain think the American people are so stupid that we are unaware of this? For the posters on this board who keep insisting that talking to Iran is a dangerous step, how do you explain the fact that Secretary of Defense, Robert Gates also thinks we should talk to Iran> Come on people, wake up. Can't you see through Bush's line of b.s. by now?

Posted by: view from the couch | May 19, 2008 4:20 PM | Report abuse

Typical McCain/Bush/neocon politics--they can't take on Obama's points head on without looking like idiots, so they poach a line or two out of context, and twist it around until it doesn't even resemble what he was talking about.

Posted by: Joe | May 19, 2008 4:19 PM | Report abuse

I guess Obama just does not care that Iran is behind many deaths of our American soldiers in Iraq. It is one thing to talk with a hostile country, but it is something else to talk with a country that is actively murdering our citizens.

Obama and his followers show both ignorance in international affairs as well as indifference to our American soldiers.

McCain Women Democrats need to establish reason in an unreasonable time.

Posted by: Mary | May 19, 2008 4:19 PM | Report abuse

JakeD

So now you declare which states are terrorist? Please spare us with you intelligence or lack of when it comes to foreign policy because your starting to resemble the classic big dumb american who is too arrogant to recognize when he is ignorant. Iran is a terrorist state only based on what our current leaders have labeled them out of speculation regarding the insurgency in Iraq. But 19 of the 9/11 hijackers came from Saudi Arabia. Does that make them a terrorist state?

Posted by: Anonymous | May 19, 2008 4:18 PM | Report abuse

David D. Robbins Jr.:

Did you think we would go EIGHT YEARS without another 9/11 attack (or worse)?

Posted by: JakeD | May 19, 2008 4:18 PM | Report abuse

Obama continues with his America-is-wrong-on-everything attitude. I think he gets it from Michelle. Yesterday he apologized for the fact some Americans drive big cars and keep our homes at 72 degrees. What would you have us do, Obama? I am not keeping Chinese or Africans from driving SUV's. Obama sucks.

Posted by: pgr88 | May 19, 2008 4:17 PM | Report abuse

"McCain is clearly the right leader for these times.

Yes, faced with the terrible menace of Ahmedinejad's big mouth, America has no choice but to counter with an Angry Short Man of its own.

Posted by: oddball | May 19, 2008 4:11 PM "

Eye for an eye diplomacy means endless battles, no peace. And we call ourselves a Christian nation! Give me a break.

Posted by: Anonymous | May 19, 2008 4:17 PM | Report abuse

Joe:

I believe that John SINDEY McCain summarized: we need to "communicate with Iran our concerns about their behavior" at an "appropriate" diplomatic level. But, he said, "a summit meeting with the president of the United States, which is what Senator Obama proposes, is the most prestigious card we have to play in international diplomacy. It is not a card to be played lightly." In fact, the Democratic candidate just talking about such a meeting could entrench Ahmadinejad and lead to a nuclear attack on Israel. Do you want a worser-case scenario?
-----------

I believe the very reasons you stated are the reasons we should talk with Iran. If we have a card that should not be "played lightly" - don't you think this would be a good time to use it? Iran's leader is entrenched as about as much as he can be. No meeting with the POTUS would change this, and its a lack of world insight to believe it would do so.

Clearly McCain does not have the knowledge to be a world leader.

Posted by: Joe | May 19, 2008 4:16 PM | Report abuse

McSame is better than Hussein.

Posted by: pakistani | May 19, 2008 4:16 PM | Report abuse

McCain's only talking is "national defense". Notice how McCain does not talk about Iraq anymore, but simply focuses on Iran!

Obama is going to nail McCain on Iraq and Iran once he has the "green light" as the presumptive Democratic nominee come June 4th!

Poor Hillary is in the background "waving" and "yelling", "What about me?!"

Posted by: AJ | May 19, 2008 4:15 PM | Report abuse

I am tired of the "can't do, won't do, won't even try" tactics. They're so quick to condemn reasonable actions without even making an attempt. You're running for presidency of the United States. We want the biggest job, but won't even face these people. Are we afraid? What is really going on? I think they had better get in there and talk to them. As far as I'm concerned, that ignorance could be minimized by getting some direct answers in a face to face conversation on behalf of the United States. If you want to be POTUS, be bold, and face him please! That should make an entire difference when you're considering using our resources. You had better get in and find out all of your options. That would be a wise move to make further decisions based on, especially thinking about our resources and military. I don't want to go down that route again. Stop hiding behind tough talk, and get in there and talk him! Get some answers first hand!

Dems White House '08

Posted by: Obama2008 | May 19, 2008 4:14 PM | Report abuse

It's bad enough that Bush crudely used the holocaust in the Israeli Knesset to elbow the opposition, but now here's McSame (great name by the way) totally overblowing the power, influence and resources of Iran, a two-bit irritant compared to the super-power days of the USSR. How many nukes does Iran have? (Hint:

Posted by: Mic Fleming | May 19, 2008 4:13 PM | Report abuse

Was this before McCain was for negotiating with Iran or after it?

I'd like it if McCain could point to one specific foreign policy matter that he has voted on where the position he voted on has turned out to be the correct position.

JUST ONE.

-Wexler

Posted by: William W. Wexler | May 19, 2008 4:12 PM | Report abuse

The Obama camp has to be more than happy that McCain want to continue talking about following George W. Bush's failed foreign policy -- as if it's a good reason to vote for him. Obama need only ask: Is the world safer, more stabilized or unified since we've been in Iraq? The answer is that the Russians now could care less about hanging out at Crawford, Darfur is a nightmare, Afghanistan has become yesterday's news, Iraq is a shambles, the Europeans hate us because we do everything unilaterally, the former British Prime Minister road our Iraq-coattails right out of 10 Downing, Uganda is a slaughterhouse, Hamas and the Israelis are still killing each other, and Osama is still making videos ... the list is endless. Obama is taking a thoughtful, measured, truly diplomatic route while McCain continues to want to put up the dukes and talk tough. Listen McCain -- it is NOT working. It hasn't worked for eight years. If McCain considers his "foreign policy" and "experience" a reason to actually vote for him than he's more deluded than I already think. McCain is an awful candidate. He already admitted he's not interested in economics, he offers new health care reform, will proceed with Bush's foreign policy, and his claim to fame is a campaign finance law that still doesn't cover loopholes that he himself uses. It's like the guy is running with absolutely no platform. Obama is looking more and more appealing every day.

Posted by: David D. Robbins Jr | May 19, 2008 4:12 PM | Report abuse

JakeD

What was the preconditions of Nixon and China, Reagan on the USSR, the evil empire. Jake your a hard core Obama non supporter. I doubt it if Obama would get your support on anything so don't try to use Meet the Press to justify your issues with him. Its phony.

Posted by: Anonymous | May 19, 2008 4:12 PM | Report abuse

McCain is clearly the right leader for these times.

Yes, faced with the terrible menace of Ahmedinejad's big mouth, America has no choice but to counter with an Angry Short Man of its own.

Posted by: oddball | May 19, 2008 4:11 PM | Report abuse

McCain has apologized and maintained a crusade to change campaign financing ever since the Keating Five scandal.

Posted by: JakeD | May 19, 2008 4:02 PM
___________________________________

What instrument did he play in "THE KEATING FIVE"? The Basso Trouser Trout?

Posted by: harried | May 19, 2008 4:11 PM | Report abuse

I think most of you don't get the true point of all this. The Republican Party and its minions have excelled at using inflammatory language to rile up their base and to convince swing voters to ignore their own self interests. It has worked in the past and the exit polling that I saw in West Virginia suggests to me that it will work again in November. Appeasement is just another of those words that could catch on and show up on bumper stickers and yard signs.

Perhaps this is "elitist" to say but I believe that most people understand words such as "appease" but they don't know the true meaning. The word and others like it are selected for its negative connotations. Remember "death tax" instead of "inheritance tax?" How about "downturn" instead of "recession?" If we put on our thinking caps we could come up with lots of examples.

An educated electorate is the enemy of conservative politics. It is better to treat the voters like mushrooms...

Posted by: mattr | May 19, 2008 4:09 PM | Report abuse

IBMWorst:

Are you QUOTING Barack Obama as saying "God Bless America Our Home"? If so, do you have that link?

Posted by: JakeD | May 19, 2008 4:09 PM | Report abuse

GOD BLESS AMERICA OUR HOME. Harvard Scholar Barack Obama.

Americans are too smart to fall for diabolical divisive Republican tricks.
Leave out divisive hate mongering (race, gender, religion).

Focus on the ECONOMY, HOMES, IRAQ WAR, FAMILY, MORALITY, INTERNATIONAL FRIENDSHIP, AND ONE AMERCA.

If Hillary didn't run such a trailer trash campaign, then the American People would have been more responsive to her message whatever that was.

Her message whatever that was got lost in all of her hate, racist, and sexist mongering, which was not beneficial to Americans. McCentury McCain is doing the same, because he lacks an agenda except Bush's policies of continued failures.

Republican Failures McCain-Bush must answer to the fact that a barrel of Oil was $24 when Bush took office and now a barrel of Oil is $124. Republican rich Oil conspiracy has undermined the American People and Our Economy in their quest for selfish, destructive and greedy ill gotten super-capitalistic Wall Street gains.

REPUBLICAN FAILURES MCCAIN-BUSH WITHIN SEVEN YEARS CHANGED A $24 BARREL OF OIL INTO A $124 BARREL OF OIL.

WERE THE REPUBLICAN FAILURES MCCAIN-BUSH SERVING THE AMERICAN PEOPLE OR SERVING THEIR SUPER-RICH FRIENDS WHEN THEY HELP CHANGE THE PRICE OF A BARREL OF OIL FROM $24 TO $124 IN JUST SEVEN YEARS?

IT'S TIME TO NATIONALIZE U.S. OIL AND THE ENERGY INDUSTRIES FOR NATIONAL DEFENSE.

300,000,000 Americans come first when it comes to the greatest benefits to the greatest number. When one percent of the population (super rich), owns and runs everything to the destruction of the ninety nine percent (typical Americans), then something must change. McCain-Bush represents greed and destruction that must stop.

If you love America, then you should inspire the American People to rise higher and HOPE for better days.

America is HOPEFUL and GREAT and will follow the HOPEFUL and INSPIRATIONAL message from Harvard Scholar Barack Obama.

GOD BLESS AMERICA OUR HOME. Harvard Scholar Barack Obama.

Posted by: IBMWorst | May 19, 2008 4:07 PM | Report abuse

The real JakeD doesn't shave his hamsters but does prefer them declawed.

Just FYI.

Posted by: JakeD the Human Habitrail | May 19, 2008 4:05 PM | Report abuse

Paul:

Actually, McCain remembers that he voted for Bush (and denied Huffington's allegation to the contrary). Next canard?

Posted by: JakeD | May 19, 2008 4:03 PM | Report abuse

Stuart:

You have heard of McCain-Feingold campaign finance reform, right? Whether you want to believe him or not, McCain has apologized and maintained a crusade to change campaign financing ever since the Keating Five scandal.

Posted by: JakeD | May 19, 2008 4:02 PM | Report abuse

You might be an idiot...if you take advice from a 72 year old fool who wears a diaper. C'mon...this guy can't remember whether he voted for Bush or not in 2000. Or when he was for talking with hamas before he was against it. Give it a rest, Mr. McSame.

Posted by: Paul | May 19, 2008 4:01 PM | Report abuse

If we look at the actual history of relations between the US and the Persian people (the Iranians), we can readily see why they'd hate us.

We backed the Shah Reza Palavi, historically one of the world's more oppressive and prolific murderers of his people, we shot down one of their civilian airliners absolutely WITHOUT provocation (the US government inquiry said the Captain of the Vincennes acted reasonably - but looking at the actual facts indicates that he was an ambitious hot dog who murdered those people.) And then we backed the (later called a) murderous dictator Saddam Hussein against the Iranians in the Iran/Iraq war (which backing included satellite intel and weapons).

GOSH! I can't for the life of me figure out why the Iranians would hate us! We've been perpetrating acts of war against them for DECADES!!!

Which of course doesn't mitigate their current status or bad potential. But it at least should buy them a conversation over tea before the nukes start flying...

Posted by: nofluer | May 19, 2008 4:01 PM | Report abuse

At least we know that as a charter member of the Keating Five, McCain was too busy taking bribes from Lincoln S&L to be involved in Iran-Contra.

Posted by: Stuart | May 19, 2008 4:01 PM | Report abuse

harried:

As I noted, that was the fake "JakeD" that posted about trout.

Posted by: JakeD | May 19, 2008 4:01 PM | Report abuse


I *almost* feel sorry for McLame.

Obama is going to crush and embarrass him in the debates.

Posted by: Anonymous | May 19, 2008 3:58 PM | Report abuse

Maybe one day right-wingers will stop mentioning how anyone who promotes a sensible foreign policy is tantamount to sitting around singing Kum Ba Yah, as if only right-wingers can fathom the notion that the world is a dangerous place. The GOP have and the neo-cons have made it far MORE dangerous, something people of all political stripes now recognize. References to that song by right-wingers are getting old, and are way past childish. There IS such a thing as a middle-ground. It's not a war footing, signing Kum Ba Ya, or NOTHING, you stupid meatheads.

Did Reagan sing along with the Soviets when he met with their leader face-to-face? Did Nixon sing around a campfire with the Chinese? Kennedy during the Cuban missile crisis? Noooo... it's called hard, productive diplomacy in order to avoid WAR.

Get real, right-wingers. Life has gray area.

Posted by: Rob Howard | May 19, 2008 3:58 PM | Report abuse

cab5015:

"I think war is never the answer to solving any problems. The best way to solve problems is to not have enemies."

-- Sheryl Crow

Posted by: JakeD | May 19, 2008 3:57 PM | Report abuse

Low-level diplomatic negotiations are NOT what McCain and Obama are fighting about. Obama has promised to personally meet with the President of Iran -- with NO condiditions -- do you agree with that?

Posted by: JakeD | May 19, 2008 3:44 PM
_______________________________________

YES!!! And might ask why you don't? Too preoccupied with your uncle's trouser trout? Stop Jakin D trout off dimwit!

Posted by: harried | May 19, 2008 3:57 PM | Report abuse

My friends, John McCain understands that the American people want change; they want a new direction.

That's why John is planning a new and completely different set of wars.

John McCain believes that with American optimism and can-do spirit, we can reach out and grab hold of a bigger dream. A bolder dream. Like the dream of fighting three wars at once.

Or perhaps you're one of those who thinks America's best days are behind her. You think three wars is too many? Unlike some, John McCain is not a man who sells America short. It's all about integrity, you know?
John has lots and lots of integrity.

My friends, I hope you'll join me and others who believe with John McCain that YES WE CAN fight three wars at once. Or four.


McCain '08! Because 189 countries still remain unconquered by our mighty legions!

Posted by: bourassa | May 19, 2008 3:57 PM | Report abuse

When McCain speaks nobody listen. It is like hearing Bush all over again.

Posted by: truth1 | May 19, 2008 3:56 PM | Report abuse

Bomb, bomb, bomb is talk- Cowboy Diplomacy. We need to leave the lines of communication open up until and including the moment of any military action. Period. It beats tough talk and backdoor whining any time.

Posted by: cab5015 | May 19, 2008 3:55 PM | Report abuse

RCC writes:Sometimes Sen. McCain you need to speak with your enemies.

All you liberals think Ob has just discovered "diplomacy", well talking with yr enemies is part of every presidency democratic and repub. Nothing new here. Ob is trying to peddle more kool aid by saying "the pres will now talk directly with..." like thats going to change anyone's mind. What's Ob got ? some magic words ?. Iran will use this as another point to say"we are now succeeding because the great satan is coming to us.." They will play Obama like a fiddle, the sad thing is Obama's weakness will lead to a war, the very opposite of what liberals think will happen. Kim il and Ahmed and Chavez, Hamas are all salivating for Ob to win. Its like that other tall tail that Ob preaches "reaching across the aisle.." Ob ius so cozy with the left , repub's dont even want to touch him. But look at Mcain , he annoys his base on a daily basis while Ob talks down to the working class while having a love fest with his base in San Francisco.

Posted by: Snapplecat | May 19, 2008 3:54 PM | Report abuse

FWIW: the fake "JakeD" posts at 3:47 PM and 3:30 PM were not made by me.
______________________

you're double life ends here.

Posted by: Ted Haggard | May 19, 2008 3:54 PM | Report abuse

McSame: Wah, wah....bad Obama wanna talk to Iran. Wah,wah. Oops...I pooped my diaper.

Posted by: Paul | May 19, 2008 3:54 PM | Report abuse

Pure Hypocracy McCain!! If you hadn't signed onto the debacle in Iraq, Iran wouldn't be as strong as they are today. Secular Iraq under Saddam Hussein maintained a balance of power in the region and kept Iran under control. But because of Bush's war in Iraq, Iran now has growing influence in the area. Bush's philosophy of non-engagment has only created a much more dangerous Iran.

Posted by: A.Lilncoln | May 19, 2008 3:54 PM | Report abuse

So let us begin anew, remembering on both sides that civility is not a sign of weakness and sincerity is always subject to proof," Kennedy said in his 1961 inaugural address. "Let us never negotiate out of fear, but let us never fear to negotiate."
Only great, foresighted and bold leaders will agree to this statement and Obama is one of them.
Let me ask those who fear to negotiate. What is wrong with meeting Amadinejad if good can come out of it?
I dont get it, do u want Tehren to stop supporting Hamas n Iraq insurgent, stop its nuclear program before a meeting? If he does that, will there be a need to meet? Anyway,for a meeting to be meaningful and sincere, there shouldnt be any preconditions. Give peace a chance is all we ask for.

Posted by: Anonymous | May 19, 2008 3:53 PM | Report abuse

I'm having a senior movement.

In my pants.

Posted by: JakeD | May 19, 2008 3:53 PM | Report abuse

Ok guys listen. George Bush doesn't talk to Iran not because they haven't met the requirements but he's too stupid. He don't even know what to say! He just got his ass slapped for asking for more oil! HOLD ON! AREN'T THE SAUDI'S OUR FRIENDS!!! BUSH AINT SH*T! HE CAN'T EVEN GET HIS FRIENDS TO DO WHAT HE WANTS AND YOU EXPECT IRAN TO DO WHAT EXACTLY? THAT'S WHAT I MEAN BY IDIOTS!!! MCCAIN IS THE SAME AND YOU WANT ANOTHER BOOB IN OFFICE WHO CAN'T GET HIS OWN FRIENDS TO HELP HIM. REPUBLICANS ARE JUST THE STRANGEST CREATURES ON THE PLANET. I AM GLAD YOU WON'T BE REPRESENTED BY A REPUKLICAN PRESIDENT THIS TIME. THANKS GOD

Posted by: Anonymous | May 19, 2008 3:53 PM | Report abuse

Over forty years ago, President Kennedy said, "We must not negotiate from fear, but we must not fear to negotiate." Sen. Obama is wise enough and tough enough to understand that this nuanced policy is the best one for our nation.

Sen. McCain is reckless, dangerously ill-informed, supercilious and smug about his own ignorance, and arrogantly willing to risk our country for his own cowboy fantasies.

Four more years of Bush-Cheney recklessness is too high a price to pay.

Posted by: dee | May 19, 2008 3:53 PM | Report abuse

For more information on John McCain's record and policy please visit here:
http://www.mccainpedia.org/index.php/Main_Page

Posted by: Demsgonnaown'08 | May 19, 2008 3:51 PM | Report abuse

FWIW: the fake "JakeD" posts at 3:47 PM and 3:30 PM were not made by me.

Posted by: JakeD | May 19, 2008 3:51 PM | Report abuse

"Jake-D needs love :('

And a good mental health facility.

Posted by: Anonymous | May 19, 2008 3:51 PM | Report abuse

McCain-Cheney 2008!!!

Posted by: royals1 | May 19, 2008 3:51 PM | Report abuse

Total number of times Iran attacked America = 0
total number of times Iran attacked it's neighbors = 0
total number of times Iran attacked Israel = 0

McSame should get a brain.

Posted by: Paul | May 19, 2008 3:51 PM | Report abuse

I have a wide stance.

On abortion and gun control.

Posted by: JakeD | May 19, 2008 3:49 PM | Report abuse

GOD BLESS AMERICA OUR HOME.

Americans are too smart to fall for diabolical divisive Republican tricks.
Leave out divisive hate mongering (race, gender, religion).

Focus on the ECONOMY, HOMES, IRAQ WAR, FAMILY, MORALITY, INTERNATIONAL FRIENDSHIP, AND ONE AMERCA.

Hillary (HillBilly) has officially become a joke. The American people do not like her or McCain and she cannot win.

If Hillary cannot win, then why does she continue her trailer trash campaign?

Hillary wants more campaign money. Hillary is not serving America. Hillary is serving herself for more campaign money.

If she didn't run such a trailer trash campaign, then the American People would have been more responsive to her message whatever that was.

Her message whatever that was got lost in all of her hate, racist, and sexist mongering, which was not beneficial to Americans. McCentury McCain is doing the same, because he lacks an agenda except Bush's policies of continued failures.

Republican McCain-Bush must answer to the fact that a barrel of Oil was $24 when Bush took office and now a barrel of Oil is $124. Republican rich Oil conspiracy has undermined the American People and Our Economy in their quest for selfish, destructive and greed ill gotten super-capitalistic Wall Street gains.

300,000,000 Americans come first when it comes to the greatest benefits to the greatest number. When one percent of the population (super rich), owns and runs everything to the destruction of the ninety nine percent (typical Americans), then something must change. McCain-Bush represents greed and destruction that must stop.

If you love America, then you should inspire the American People to rise higher and HOPE for better days.

America is HOPEFUL and GREAT and will follow the HOPEFUL and INSPIRATIONAL message from Harvard Scholar Barack Obama.

GOD BLESS AMERICA OUR HOME.

Posted by: Christopheur | May 19, 2008 3:49 PM | Report abuse

EarlC:

The U.S. should go anywhere ISLAMIC terrorists are plotting to kill Americans.

Luke Gilmore:

You have heard of McCain-Feingold campaign finance reform, right? Whether you want to believe him or not, McCain has apologized and maintained a crusade to change campaign financing ever since the Keating Five scandal.

Posted by: JakeD | May 19, 2008 3:49 PM | Report abuse

Has anyone reminded "mr senior moment" that the current secs of state and defense have endorsed talking with iran?

Posted by: Chris | May 19, 2008 3:49 PM | Report abuse

Jake-D needs love :(

Posted by: Anonymous | May 19, 2008 3:48 PM | Report abuse

Mike

What I have learned is we as a country have become soo dogmatic in our politics that Obama, Hillary and McCain could say the exact same thing and still be viewed as wrong by the supporters of each. You would not like Obama regardless of his views. No more than you liked Bill Clinton who usually took policy from the left and the right and blended them together. The republicans would criticize his policies then once they would work they would say that he only stole their ideas and called them his own. Dogmatic politics have taken the place of common sense in the US.

Posted by: Anonymous | May 19, 2008 3:48 PM | Report abuse

So McSame wants to go in and do to Iran just what we did to Iraq. That worked great.....

Obama says the Iran risk is tiny compared to Iran...Let's see, thousands of megaton nuclear warheads on ICBM's pointed at the US, or a tiny state with a defense budget the size of Connecticut's GDP who maybe someday, at some point, may develop a weapon that will fit on a missle that could hit Israel........Sounds pretty accurate to me.

Not sure who is more retarded, McSame or the idiots who think this guy is lucid.

Posted by: CSD | May 19, 2008 3:47 PM | Report abuse

Do "Greedy Old Pigs" have no better to offer then this long DOW McBush man almost death. He is guilty by default of the cover up of the 9/11 horror, that singled a nation in distress. For that and a thousand other reasons he never becomes president of the USA. Large money and large companies are financing this cover up. Technical University Delft did some investigations over 9/11. They lied about the outcome. There faculty building disappeared this week in flames, got burned down to the ground. God punished them for there lies. Everybody knows that explosives were used, manufactured in Israel and put in please by members of the mossad together with help of the CIA (the clandestine part of this ferocious organization of not-humans). Obama has to investigate as to how World Trade Center building 7 could collapse. And you WAPO are also guilty by default by not telling the truth to the American people. If Obama wants a better world, he has got to lock up the lager part of the mainstream media and the current government.

Posted by: jwh | May 19, 2008 3:47 PM | Report abuse

McCain's support for NAMBLA is why I will continually back him.

Posted by: JakeD | May 19, 2008 3:47 PM | Report abuse

Obama should blast McSame for keeping his wife's tax returns private. We already know she invested over $2 million in Sudan wich is worse than Iran. RELEASE YOUR WIFE'S TAX RETURNS, MR. McCAIN.

Posted by: Playa | May 19, 2008 3:47 PM | Report abuse

"I will be more than happy to answer your questions, just as soon as you answer mine ..."

And I'll be happy to oblige as soon as you ask a question that's relevant to the conversation.

Hou's your uncle?

Posted by: Phxflyer | May 19, 2008 3:46 PM | Report abuse

rcc_2000:

Do you agree with former Congressman, Harold Ford, Jr. (D-TN): "I'll concede, you cannot meet with foreign leaders, with terrorists, rather, and those who lead rogue nations without some conditions."

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/24693653/page/2/print/1/displaymode/1098/

Posted by: JakeD | May 19, 2008 3:46 PM | Report abuse

JakeD was dropped as a child

Posted by: Anonymous | May 19, 2008 3:46 PM | Report abuse

John McCain is a liar. Just ask Charles Keating about the Senator's involvement in the Savings and Loan scandal.

Charles Keating was convicted of racketeering and fraud in both state and federal court after his Lincoln Savings & Loan collapsed, costing the taxpayers $3.4 billion. His convictions were overturned on technicalities; for example, the federal conviction was overturned because jurors had heard about his state conviction, and his state charges because Judge Lance Ito (yes, that judge) screwed up jury instructions. Neither court cleared him, and he faces new trials in both courts.)

Though he was not convicted of anything, McCain intervened on behalf of Charles Keating after Keating gave McCain at least $112,00 in contributions. In the mid-1980s, McCain made at least 9 trips on Keating's airplanes, and 3 of those were to Keating's luxurious retreat in the Bahamas. McCain's wife and father-in-law also were the largest investors (at $350,000) in a Keating shopping center; the Phoenix New Times called it a "sweetheart deal."

In 1996, on the eve of the retrial of the federal case, Keating entered a plea agreement -- he admitted to having committed bankruptcy fraud by extracting $1 million from American Financial Corp. while already anticipating the collapse that happened weeks later. In return, the federal prosecutors dropped all other charges against him and his son, Charles Keating III. He was sentenced to the four years he had already served.[3]

Keating remains essentially unrepentant, maintaining that not his mistakes but regulators' actions were ultimately responsible for the losses. He repeated these claims in an interview in 2006. The 2004 book The Savings and Loan Crisis: Lessons from a Regulatory Failure makes similar claims and presents Keating in a favorable light.[4]

In an April 2008 opinion piece titled "The Keating Five Legacy," William K. Black, Associate Professor of Law and Economics at the University of Missouri, Kansas City, presents his views about Keating (among others). Black was counsel to the Federal Home Loan Bank Board during the savings and loan crisis of the 1980s and was a whistleblower in the Keating Five scandal. His book on the crisis "The Best Way to Rob a Bank Is to Own One" was published in 2005 by the University of Texas Press.[5]

Some who lost their life savings committed suicide. When Charles Keating was prematurely released from jail, the living victims and family members of those who took their own lives felt as if they had been double crossed again.


This old man should go back to his luxurious ranch and spend his remaining days barbecuing and riding his horses.

His idea of who is a "terrorist" is probably anyone who lives in a foreign country.

Not this time.

Posted by: Luke Gilmore | May 19, 2008 3:46 PM | Report abuse

So David: talking to Iran would give them time to become stronger? how exactly does not talking to them not do the same thing, or worse (it removes the distraction if nothing else). only the weak fear talking.

Posted by: JoeT1 | May 19, 2008 3:45 PM | Report abuse

"wolk58:

At least we are killing terrorists over there rather than in American cities right here in our own backyard.


Posted by: JakeD | May 19, 2008 3:29 PM"

Well, when do you plan to start killing the terrorists in the other 60 countries where al Qaida has cells? Maybe you have a short memory, but there are actually terrorists living in America. A drive-by shooting, a random act of violence against an innocent person, a carjacking, and so forth are all acts of terror. Any act that instills fear is such an act. The last time I looked at the newspaper and listened to the local news, there were still plenty of acts of terror going on right here in good ol' U.S. of A. However, we cannot give our police the weapons that they need to respond to the criminals with the assault rifles (thank you NRA) because everyone knows that you have to hunt for a bird with an assault rifle. Ok, maybe a poor, innocent deer. I am so glad that you think that we have no problems in our cities.

Posted by: Earl C, Virginia Beach | May 19, 2008 3:45 PM | Report abuse

My uncle wants to take me fishing for trouser trout.

Posted by: JakeD | May 19, 2008 3:39 PM
___________________________________

I'm sure you and Unk will lick your lips. Butter them first, suck the juice, and then swallow.

Posted by: harried | May 19, 2008 3:45 PM | Report abuse

There was one attack!!!! We have been told of the "imminent" attack since!!! It seems to me that there are MAJOR societal problems that are far worse than "terrorist" from another country. We Americans are acting like a bunch of scared punks and the real culprit is the media that grinds us down with the rhetoric of the fear mongers. In reading multiple postings from a cross section of topics tells me that I have less to be concerned about from Al-A, Iran or anywhere else than I have for the racist tones I read from "good Americans". This country was built on fear, deceit and robbery. The founding father's weren't that noble and the DNA of this country is corrupt!!!! However, just like the family member I think is negative, I will defend and love my country in spite of it's flaws.
We may have a Black or Woman pres, which will go against the racist, purist NAZI WHITE AMERICANS but if we as a country are not careful we are going to be destroyed from within from all of the hate we spew to "OUR CITIZENS". God Bless America (and even the Klan among you).

Posted by: Charles Mann | May 19, 2008 3:45 PM | Report abuse

There's a pretty good picture on the U.S. State Department website here of Roosevelt and Churchill sitting down with Stalin.

http://www.state.gov/r/pa/ei/pix/b/eur/79052.htm

This one is good too:

http://www.nytstore.com/ProdDetail.aspx?prodId=2439

FDR - babe in the woods, right? Churchill ... some kind of patsy.

Sheesh. Get real. You play your hand, man.

Posted by: pressF1 | May 19, 2008 3:44 PM | Report abuse

I think McCain giggles to himself with the idea of inflicting four years of torture on the same country that left him in a POW camp back in 'Nam.

Posted by: NedTugent | May 19, 2008 3:44 PM | Report abuse

Kay Decker:

Low-level diplomatic negotiations are NOT what McCain and Obama are fighting about. Obama has promised to personally meet with the President of Iran -- with NO condiditions -- do you agree with that?

Posted by: JakeD | May 19, 2008 3:44 PM | Report abuse

I'm still not sure if McCain is simply playing the Orwell card over and over (i.e., constant references to foreign threats, real and imagined) to avoid discussing domestic policy or if he's just another neocon crackpot. I'm leaning towards neocon crackpot. Sorry Johnny, you'll need a different brand of snake oil.

Posted by: Anonymous | May 19, 2008 3:44 PM | Report abuse

@@@@@@@@@@@


JOHN MCCAIN GIVES UP TENNIS FOR SOLDIERS

Sen. John McCain, the republican presumptive presidential nominee, says he is 'standing in solidarity' with President Bush
who recently announced he gave up golf to honor those
fighting in Iraq.

"I can think of no other greater tribute but to put aside one of
my recreational activities," said McCain. "However, I will not
vote for increased benefits for veterans, or increased support for thosewounded in Iraq, nor will I support an outright ban on torture, because if I did I would not get the base of the party to vote for me."

"I also believe that by giving up tennis is send the message to the Iranians that I am not to be messed with," concluded McCain.

@@@@@@@@@@@

Posted by: 4moreyears????? | May 19, 2008 3:42 PM | Report abuse

Nixon spoke to China and Reagan Spoke to Iran (and sold the weapons against US law),... Sometimes Sen. McCain you need to speak with your enemies... I can already see an extension of the Bush Doctrine (spread stupidity around the world).

Posted by: rcc_2000 | May 19, 2008 3:42 PM | Report abuse

So all you republicans or McCain supporters, let me ask you one thing. While idiot bush and now stupid McCain waits until Iran just wakes up one day and says "Ok, I will agree to all that they want" What do you think IRAN IS DOING!! LAUGHING AT YOU AND THE PRES AND THIS RIDICULOUS SENATOR MCCAIN AND POSSIBLY BUILDING THEIR BOMB. See, what you fail to realize is that while you wait and wait and wait, they do whatever they want. See Obama wants to end that by using diplomacy. You guys buy into the madness of inaction and chest pounding but guess what, Iran could care less about McCain. They probably want McCain to be pres because until they do everything WE want in order for us to talk, they build build build. they could CARE LESS ABOUT McCain so they have NO intentions of giving in just BECAUSE WE SAY SO! idiots.

Posted by: Anonymous | May 19, 2008 3:42 PM | Report abuse

Mexico is more dangerous to the USA than either Iran or Iraq and both are for open Borders and amnesty for the invading Horde!

Posted by: Black Saint | May 19, 2008 3:42 PM | Report abuse

"We need to figure out a way to develop some leverage . . . and then sit down and talk with them. We can't go to a discussion and be completely the demander, with them not feeling that they need anything from us."......

Chamberlin before meeting with Hitler? Obama talking about Iran?

No, defense secretary Robert Gates speaking before a group of retired diplomats.

This garbage is just another McSame pander, talking without thinking, jumping on any hotpoint just to have something to say. He knows his audience is Faux News viewer who couldn't research an issue or comment if their life depended on it.

This, from the creep who was for limited abortion rights before he was against it; was against lobbyists until he decided they were the only ones who could raise money for him (with 5 already being fired); was against torture until he was for it; was for public financing for his campaign until he was against it.

This guy couldn't find integrity or the truth if it was floating in his Metamucil.

Posted by: CSD | May 19, 2008 3:42 PM | Report abuse

"My uncle wants to take me fishing for trouser trout."

Please, go with him.

Posted by: Anonymous | May 19, 2008 3:41 PM | Report abuse

McCain's wife reminds me of Norman's mother in Psycho.

Only younger.

Posted by: BorisDSpider | May 19, 2008 3:41 PM | Report abuse

phxflyer:

I will be more than happy to answer your questions, just as soon as you answer mine ...

shrink2:

Yes, I want more of the same. Also, McCain raised $8 million in one NYC fundraiser recently. But, he would gladly stop doing that for his own campaign IF Obama kept his word and accepted public financing for the general election campaign. Do you think that will happen?

Posted by: JakeD | May 19, 2008 3:41 PM | Report abuse

McCain's latest just goes to show you the truth of the old adage that "Insanity is inherited"....

It seems McCain is in the process of happily inheriting Bush's and the Republican's
insane policy in regards to the Middle East...


Posted by: Birddog | May 19, 2008 3:40 PM | Report abuse

I love the republican philosophy of "don't talk to someone unless they earn the privilege of talking with you". I know that philosophy works so well in life doesn't it. Next time you get in an argument ignore the person you are arguing with and belittle them to everyone else until they come around to your position. What's that?..you don't want to agree with me yet?!....well then we are just going to have to kick your ass.

Posted by: mark in sa | May 19, 2008 3:40 PM | Report abuse

My uncle wants to take me fishing for trouser trout.

Posted by: JakeD | May 19, 2008 3:39 PM | Report abuse

On this issue, Barack Obama is undeniably correct. The only foreign policy for our country that makes any sense whatsoever is one where we actually go out and talk to people. Of course we don't agree with many of the things that the Iranian government espouses or does, but that shouldn't stop us from trying to bridge the divide by engaging Iran in diplomatic discussions that further the self-interests of the United States. In 1979, the Egyptian-Israeli Peace Treaty was signed and brought two warring countries much needed peace. We should be seeking to bring Iran and Israel together the same way that President Carter brought Egypt and Israel together. It is in America's best interests to have peace in the Middle East. We'll never accomplish that if we ignore any of the nations that make up the Middle East. If President Bush had been even a halfway decent president, he could have gone a long way to making the situation in the Middle East much more stable, as opposed to the roiling cauldron that it has become under his watch.

Posted by: Kay Decker | May 19, 2008 3:38 PM | Report abuse

Mr Keating Five McCain is talking about judgment? Give me a break. This moron still supports the illegal war in Iraq. And the millions of illegal aliens that have invaded and occupied our country.
McCain needs to be sent to the nut house, not the white house.

Posted by: DWayne | May 19, 2008 3:36 PM | Report abuse

Brad:

The "surge" in Iraq was fully implemented just over ONE year ago -- not 6 or 7 years ago -- McCain had been asking for a surge for quite a while before Bush finally agreed.

Posted by: JakeD | May 19, 2008 3:36 PM | Report abuse

Will Jeff Gannon - that gay prostitute with media clearance at the white house - visit John McCain?

Will McCain have the first White House hamster for a pet?

Posted by: Jocelyn | May 19, 2008 3:36 PM | Report abuse

McCain has it half right. Obama is inexperienced. It is McCain and his cohorts that have been reckless. I urge everyone to try to view the CSpan tapes of the "debate" over the Iraq invasion resolution. You will be interested to see just how convinced McCain was that he was right then, too.

Posted by: steve boyington | May 19, 2008 3:35 PM | Report abuse

McSame is McSame because his campaign is now wholly owned by the RNC. He can not raise his own money, for obvious reasons.

Barak, on the other hand does not need any PAC money, not even that of the Democratic party. No wonder the right wing is so afraid of him. He owes no one anything.

Since the RNC is nothing but right wing special interest lobbyists, McSame has to toe their line. He literally has no choice.
So much for the "maverick". You want more of the same? Vote McSame.

Posted by: shrink2 | May 19, 2008 3:35 PM | Report abuse

Obama sounds presidential; McCain sounds senile.

Posted by: Martin | May 19, 2008 3:35 PM | Report abuse

"Did you think we would go EIGHT YEARS without another 9/11 attack (or worse)?"

The question has no relevance to the discussion. This is foreign policy being discussed, not domestic tranquility.

But just to keep you happy, how about you answer these questions:

After the administration of Bill Clinton arrested, tried and jailed those who originally attacked the Twin Towers, did you ever think there would be a President stupid enough to ignore warnings that the buildings would be attacked again, only this time with airliners?

And, on 9/11 did you think we would go EIGHT YEARS without catching the people responsible for taking down the Twin Towers?

Finally, did you ever think a president would be stupid enough to go to war with a country that had nothing to do with 9/11 and imperial our position in the world with a forerign policy doctrine that is a complete failure, and is known for being one of the biggest foreign policy blunders in history?

Have fun.

Posted by: Phxflyer | May 19, 2008 3:35 PM | Report abuse

senator obama is doing quite well in sustaining the attacks from mccain.his replies shows that he has a grasp on foreign policy issues.he's answering mccains attacks expediently and is looking presidential in his replies.it won't be long before mccain become flustered and will start to loose his temper.

Posted by: ron | May 19, 2008 3:34 PM | Report abuse

"John Kerry":

So, YOUR NAMESAKE was not a "war hero" for getting shot as well? JFK was not a "war hero" for crashing his PT boat?

I mean, come on, this is like shooting fish in a barrel ...

Posted by: JakeD | May 19, 2008 3:34 PM | Report abuse

No new news here--

just more Republican terrorism against the American people.

Posted by: Klem | May 19, 2008 3:33 PM | Report abuse

Mccain is taking up were Bush left off. Mccain believes the surge is working. 6 years going on 7 years, doesn't seem like a plan that is working. Besides Bush is paying the Sunni to defend their own country, what kind of foreign policy is that. Where paying Iraqi's to defend their county. Mccain better get a real plan if he expects to win this election. Mccain critizes Obama but he never tells why the U.S. president shouldn't meet with Iran. Why. Mccain needs to get a plan of his own and stop trying to run on a failed Bush policy.

Posted by: Brad | May 19, 2008 3:32 PM | Report abuse

SoccerMom:

Thanks for your "little concern[]". McCain will be just fine -- or, if not, the Constitution provides that the Vice-President takes over should President McCain die or become incapacitated -- he has stated that he will select a Vice-Presidential candidate with that in mind.

Posted by: JakeD | May 19, 2008 3:31 PM | Report abuse

a real war hero would have never been shot down.

Posted by: John Kerry | May 19, 2008 3:31 PM | Report abuse

didn't ronald reagan sell arms to iran?

didn't the first bush put hussein in power in iraq?

didn't the us sell arms to iraq to fight iran?

didn't the republicans create this mess?

Posted by: jack werner | May 19, 2008 3:30 PM | Report abuse

Obama is right. Ahmadinejad's attempt to develop a nuclear weapons program does not physically endanger the US. But Israel's existence would be imperiled if Iran were to have nuclear weapons. Possibly even the likelihood of their existence would cause the Israeli's to act. And the US would be helpless to control events. Such destabilization would create havoc on the world economies, including the US.

Despots love talking - long, drawn-out discussions. This affords them time to become more powerful while giving them the appearance of legitimately working towards a solution. Ahmadinejad would love to speak to a President Obama.

No one believes that any of these candidates is foolish enough to follow Bush's lead. Obama's claim that a Pres. McCain would allow Bush's doctrines to continue is only politics.

Obama possesses a degree of arrogance and inexperience that is tailor-suited for Ahmadinejad.

Posted by: David | May 19, 2008 3:30 PM | Report abuse

Hero of what? He is a laze do nothing senator and former drunk. A loser from the word go his whole life. I am afraid his past is there for all to see. A loser.

=============
McCain's a hero Obama's a zero.

Posted by: Tobias | May 19, 2008 3:18 PM

Posted by: Anonymous | May 19, 2008 3:30 PM | Report abuse

"If Obama could not change the radical religious anti-American and anti-white rants of his Rev Wright, so there is no way he will change other radical religious fanatics. Poor judgement at the expense of American lives." posted by (unidentified)

Interesting idea that falls on the merits. Jesus couldn't do it either. He really gave it a try. They hanged him! There are things I cannot change about my pastor either, but I still keep going to the same church. I guess that I have the hope that comes with knowing that things will change one day. I have the hope today that there is Obama tomorrow instead of McBush. Many of us hang around America for many reasons. I have served my country in the military but do not like everything that I experience here, like bigots and foul-mouthed hatemongers. I'll stay here hoping that things will improve. See, one can transition from talking about a preacher in a church to a President of the United States. This is an apt anaolgy. Actually, I can almost hear the people leaving America who do not want Obama in the White House.

Posted by: Earl C, Virginia Beach | May 19, 2008 3:29 PM | Report abuse

wolk58:

At least we are killing terrorists over there rather than in American cities right here in our own backyard.

Posted by: JakeD | May 19, 2008 3:29 PM | Report abuse

Looks like McCain shot himself in the foot again. War is merely the continuation of diplomacy by other means, as last resort. A diplomatic solution is always preferable. I got news for McCain: ALL countries of the world would much prefer it if the US started using the diplomatic route instead of shooting first and asking questions later. We all know where that Texas Cowboy technique got us.

Posted by: bodo | May 19, 2008 3:28 PM | Report abuse

I am a little concerned about McCain's heath.

Having cancer in his face and so close to the brain - you know that kind of thing spreads and we don't a world leader with brain cancer with his finger on the button.

Posted by: SoccerMom | May 19, 2008 3:28 PM | Report abuse

If we were to go by McCains logic we would only talk to those who agree with our views and we would go to war with those who don't. Because if you don't have the option of talk the only thing left is the status quo or war. So by his remarks McCain shows me that he is reckless and dangerous. Eight years of the Bush doctrine that has managed to killed over 4077 wounding thousands Americans soldiers for jumping into something that with talk and time would have shown there was no need for us to attack. McCain is Bush in oldmans clothing with very little difference in view and policy.

Posted by: wolf58 | May 19, 2008 3:26 PM | Report abuse

What is reckless in my opinion is to try to make a political argument by using the issue which is so vital to the US and Israeli interests - Iran's threat. Senator Obama is trying very hard to ride his message of change by inventing new foreign policy which is dangerous to our vital interests.

Posted by: jjj | May 19, 2008 3:25 PM | Report abuse

Didn't this guy father an illegitimate black child?

Posted by: Tyrannical Bob | May 19, 2008 3:25 PM | Report abuse

jfp -

"It's going to be non stop fear mongering, blather and chest thumping until November"

----------------

You are right about that and the Obama campaign has taken the early lead. Obama's entire campaign is based on fear.

"Vote for me or the middle class is gone"

"Vote for me or the earth will boil over"

"Vote for me or millions of Americans will fall into poverty"

You guys play the same dirty game. You just delude yourself into thinking you are vicitms. You aren't. You are equally the aggressors and your tactics are equally disingenuous and divisive. Unless of course, you think name calling is some admirable form of poltical discourse.

Posted by: Mike | May 19, 2008 3:24 PM | Report abuse

Ed the Horse:

Which "guy"? McCain or Obama?

phxflyer:

Did you think we would go EIGHT YEARS without another 9/11 attack (or worse)?

Posted by: JakeD | May 19, 2008 3:24 PM | Report abuse

Don't you wish that the Vietnamese did better work?

Posted by: Dick Boredus | May 19, 2008 3:23 PM | Report abuse

For all of McCain's supposed foreign policy expertise, it's becoming increasingly evident that he doesn't have any real transformational ideas to offer. That's why he spends most of his time criticizing Obama, instead of talking about the specifics of what he would do. He seems to be trying to appeal to people who are so paralyzed by fear that they can't consider change.

Posted by: Patrick Kiger | May 19, 2008 3:23 PM | Report abuse

Mike wrote:

What we are doing with North Korea is exactly what Obama advocates we do with Iran. Why are you bashing Bush for it? Or do you just like to blame him for everything.

Don't fool yourself Mike, if we are talking with NK it is for totally different reasons and yes I do blame Bush for most everything and VP Cheney for the rest. He got us into a war under false pretense and with no thought for a way out, the economy is hitting bottom on his watch, homes are being lost on his watch because of lending practices that were not checked on his watch. I could go on, but you would still say I am blaming good old President Bush for everything.

Posted by: Shar | May 19, 2008 3:22 PM | Report abuse

No, Mike, you were implying the poster had no "brain power" at all. And, that wasn't your first ad hominem on this thread either. If you don't know the meaning of said logical fallacy, please look it up and then we can discuss.

Posted by: JakeD | May 19, 2008 3:22 PM | Report abuse

If this guy gets elected, we'll be singing 'God Bless Saudi America'.

Posted by: Ed the Horse | May 19, 2008 3:21 PM | Report abuse

Johnny Napalm is an old buffoon.
No more, no less.

Too bad he survived Hanoi.

Posted by: Kase | May 19, 2008 3:20 PM | Report abuse

Oil and the munitions industry are expectations of the update as for an all-time high
profit.
The oil majors seem to become more in the best condition in 2008 when the crude oil
price exceeded 100 dollars a barrel.

It is said that there is a possibility that the ExxonMobil Co. updates the highest profit record again in the history of the United States enterprise in fiscal year 2007 according to the report of CNNMoney.

Fa Oppenheimer company resource analyst Dell Gat is talking by this CNN report. "Earnings of the Exxon Co. rise for 125 million dollars a quarter (about 13,343,110,000 yen) whenever the crude oil price goes up for one dollar. "

A current, highest profit records of the Exxon Co. are 39.5 billion dollars (about 4,218,046,000,000 yen) in fiscal year 2006, and this company says in that case that they will become the calculations earned for about 75,000 dollars a minute (about 8,009,189 yen).

Earnings of petroleum industries are thought to be a roughly good, and the earnings growth of about 25% is expected as for the Continental Oil Co. Philips in third place in industry Co.. The analyst forecasts that Co. of Chevron in the second place in industry is also good, and the profit a stock rises by about 30%.

Is it bright in the future of munitions and the industries that continue
bullish growth?

The encouraging news continues to not only the petroleum industry but also munitions and the defense industries. The title of the additional remark thing on January 24 of Associated Press is 'The defense industry is peaceful even in case of being in the market of the rage. 'Content of the article is the following feeling:


The global market continues in the predicament, and it pants, and the boom continues to US economy for the inside that is shaking to recession and the huge defense enterprise in the United States.

The majority of the reason depend on the increase of the arms cost in Iraq and Afghanistan of the Department of Defense though defense industry each company is maintaining marvelous last few years earnings. The defense industry never seems to submerge and surface to the business trend in the future because not a general consumer but the government is a largest customer.

Blues Tanner CFO of "Our industry is far from the credit risk or the kind of problem" Lockheed Martin Corp. talks. "The influence is feeling of not being. "
(omission)
The fighter is manufactured, and as for the Lockheed company that is the world's largest defense enterprise, the fourth quarter of fiscal year 2007 earnings rise by 10%, and the profit of ten cents a stock is expected in fiscal year 2008. Earnings growth is expected in fiscal year 2008 though the fourth quarter of fiscal year 2007 of the Northrop Grumman Co. of the ship manufacturing net profit is almost a level-off.

In the fourth quarter of 2007, the General Dynamics Co. that manufactured it from the armored vehicle for the army to the bullet reported on the earnings zoom of 42%. It is said that order shortage will not be seen at present by the private jet manufacturing section that the demand decrease with the cost cutter of corporate each company is expected by recession.


Even if it is recessional, corporate CEO seems not to part with a private jet easily so. In addition, a bright prospect of the munitions industry is told in this article as follows:


As for the Senate, the donation for the military expense of 696 billion dollars has already been approved, and Iraq Afghanistan stationing expense 189 billion dollars are included in this though the donation for the military expense since this year is opaque. It is expected that President Bush also will sign this donation idea. Some analysts are watching the possibility that sales of the defense industry will be ruined for the long term in the future by the possibility of the election and the forces reduction of the new president.

Mr. Northrop Co. CEO Ronald sugar says that he will expect that the United States of America defense budget rises in fiscal year 2009, too. It is said that the change in the supplementary budget for which the White House is depending now will not influence the arms business scheme for the plural of Northrop Co. year according to Mr. sugar.

"Our company will be able to maintain the balance growth continuously according to
the basic budget" he said.


The president-elect who maintains "War special procurements"?

Well, the unprecedented business age of the chance that Bush administration brought is about to be going to end in 2008, too. It is necessary who to be elected a president-elect for a petroleum industry in the best condition and the munitions industry or to make the president-elect who elect might be a present, most important theme.

Republican Party presidential candidate John Macan was said while promising the improvement of the medical service for the serviceman on January 27, 2007 by the presidential candidate canvass held in Town Hall of Florida state Polk city:


「Frankly speaking, it puts it in you. Our country ..a severe war now.. is fighting. It doesn't seem to end easily so. And, the war by another one will start. The following war exists though it is regrettable to say these kind of things. What can able war to be it, and need not never surrender by us. Still, many PTSD patients for whom treatment is necessary are going out, and many disabled soldiers' treatment will be needed in the future. It is a miserable injury due to the explosion of IED (simple road bomb). Ladies and gentlemen, it becomes very severe. There are a lot of things that should be provided. ・・・」


John Macan that had not been made Patsu in 2000 revived completely somehow in 2008. After all, the possibility that John Macan becomes the following "President fight" might be considerably high. And, Macan continues and is waited for for usual US citizen by the severe future as said voluntarily.

Posted by: gaughaupg | May 19, 2008 3:20 PM | Report abuse

Republicans need terrorism to remain relevant.

Posted by: Dead Reagan | May 19, 2008 3:20 PM | Report abuse

Keating 5 = Reckless Judgement

Posted by: longwalksinparis.blogspot.com | May 19, 2008 3:20 PM | Report abuse

McCain is correct, we cannot, cannot, cannot, give them an open forum, from the White House no less, and let the world know we recognize them. JFK's speech was directed soley at the USSR and not some backwater country lead by an insane leader hellbent on the destruction and death.

Posted by: James | May 19, 2008 3:19 PM | Report abuse

JakeD, your partisianship has blinded you to the fact that the Bush / McCain Doctrine has not only been a complete failure, but, by every measure, is one of the biggest foreign policy blunders in history.

This country's position has not been improved by one iota by the Bush / McCain shoot first and ask questions later approach. In fact, we find ourselves in a much worse global position than ever before.

But, hey, feel free to keep your head buried in the sand.

Posted by: Phxflyer | May 19, 2008 3:19 PM | Report abuse

I'll start listening to WcCain about Iran as soon as he figures out the differences between Iran, al-qaeda, sunnis and shiites.

Posted by: dan | May 19, 2008 3:19 PM | Report abuse

longwalksinparis.blogspot.com -

Nice "swiftboating". Oh wait! Only liberals can be swiftboated. Liberals can lie all they want about conservatives.

Here is a nice article from well known Bush critic Joe Conason, entitled, "Bush 'Nazi' Smear Unworthy of Critics"

http://www.observer.com/node/48231

It is clearly the left that is running a slime attack this year. Good for you.

Posted by: Anonymous | May 19, 2008 3:19 PM | Report abuse

McCain himself has a reputation for being the reckless scion of an Admiral. Like "W" he was a legacy at his chosen University. Interesting similarity.

It's going to be non stop fear mongering, blather and chest thumping until November when the GOP is vanquished by voters who are tired of sour old men and their bitter hatred of anything beyond their control.

More to the point, history is rife with examples of diplomacy that has worked. Indeed there are classical phlosophers who believed that the very goal of politics is to mitigate conflict through negotiation.

It is a special class of people who seem to believe that blowing up things is the only way to resolve the very natural conflicts between nations. Just look at how well it is working in Iraq.

Posted by: jfp | May 19, 2008 3:18 PM | Report abuse

I noticed that the 9/11 attacks have come up again. No one wants another 9/11 here in America. However, the reality of the new world order is that something bad could really happen. No one can really stop a determined foe from eventually doing the damnable. Bush's response is to be sure that we have a missile defense system paid for by the American taxpayers to prevent another 9/11. LOL So pathetic. Connect the dots, people. This administration has no clue. Fortunately, the suicide bombers are pretty much confined to the Middle East and some parts of SE Asia.
The fact is that Bush and company misread the signals that were coming in loud and clear prior to 9/11/2001 and have been bending over backwards to try to cover their mistakes ever since. As long as the American public can focus on Iraq, Afghanistan, Obama's communication skills (elitist?? - as in what is wrong with being able to speak English in a coherent way), and so forth, then Bush's shortcomings, which are legion, can be out of view.
Please, pretty please. Just try to listen to a Bush speech all the way through. Obama is a breath of fresh air. If you do not go to sleep listening to McCain, good for you.

By the way, McCain attends North Phoenix Baptist Church as far as I know. Dan Yeary is the pastor there. Dan Yeary can be heard on FamilyNet, in my area at 9:30 p.m. Sundays on digital channel 260. Hagee has gone off the deep end. However, Dan Yeary is an excellent preacher and is not inclined to preach politics. He can say more in a 25-minute sermon that most preachers in two hours. I was fortunate to be able to visit North Phoenix Baptist about ten years ago. Yeary is as good now as he was then.

Posted by: Earl C, Virginia Beach | May 19, 2008 3:18 PM | Report abuse

Why not present Senator McCain's comments for what they are: distortions. Why not put this headline where it belongs, somewhere on what used to be called page 9. Why not save "above the fold" headlines for real news, not this red-meat bombast which is a distraction and a dis-service to those in the electorate wanting to judge the positions of each candidate. Giving prominence to this fiction only serves to dumb down the electorate--not to mention irritate and spawn apathy.

Posted by: joepradis | May 19, 2008 3:18 PM | Report abuse

McCain's a hero Obama's a zero.

Posted by: Tobias | May 19, 2008 3:18 PM | Report abuse

Why not present Senator McCain's comments for what they are: distortions. Why not put this headline where it belongs, somewhere on what used to be called page 9. Why not save "above the fold" headlines for real news, not this red-meat bombast which is a distraction and a dis-service to those in the electorate wanting to judge the positions of each candidate. Giving prominence to this fiction only serves to dumb down the electorate--not to mention irritate and spawn apathy.

Posted by: joepradis | May 19, 2008 3:18 PM | Report abuse

Yes Mr. McCain, the vintage Bush & GOP Sandboxonian policy of I'll just ignore you and all will improve has really worked out well for us in the world over the past seven years hasn't it?

I'm tiring of political attacks that only play well with the uneducated and the ignorant. How many nuclear missles did the USSR have pointed at us, ready at a moments notice, back in the good 'ole days Mr. McCain? Exactly Mr. Obama's point and he's exactly right on his point.

Posted by: Anonymous | May 19, 2008 3:17 PM | Report abuse

JakeD

"You do realize that asking someone to "show[] some brain power" is an ad hominem attack itself, right?"

-------------------

No it isn't at all. It saying "show the brain power that you have", not "you have no brain power".

Regurgitating partisan talking points either from Limbaugh or Olbermann is lazy. I was simply encouraging the poster to think for himself.

Posted by: Anonymous | May 19, 2008 3:15 PM | Report abuse

And speaking of apologies... why didn't Bush renounce the his hitler lovin grandpa prescott when addressing the knesset ?

Posted by: longwalksinparis.blogspot.com | May 19, 2008 3:15 PM | Report abuse

McLame knows all about reckless judgement.

He's described by fellow Sen. Joe Biden in one word...BRITTLE.

McLame's uncontrolled temper is legendary. He cusses out fellow Senators using the F word and worse. And that's with Senators IN HIS OWN PARTY.

McLame is a LOOSE CANNON. He's worse than Chimpy and much more dangerous. If he got into the WH (he won't), he would be more likely than any President in history to lose his cool and PUSH THE BUTTON.

McLame is INSANE. He is not fit to be President. Hell, he's not fit to be a US Senator.

McLame...the Geriatric Gigolo.

Posted by: Tom3 | May 19, 2008 3:14 PM | Report abuse

If Obama could not change the radical religious anti-American and anti-white rants of his Rev Wright, so there is no way he will change other radical religious fanatics. Poor judgement at the expense of American lives.

Posted by: Anonymous | May 19, 2008 3:13 PM | Report abuse

Has not talking to Iran stopped them from sending weapons to "Iraq" and killing our soldiers?

Posted by: Shar | May 19, 2008 3:13 PM | Report abuse

Shar wrote:

"We want to bully Iran but we turn a blind eye to what North Korea is doing right in our face."

-----------------

What we are doing with North Korea is exactly what Obama advocates we do with Iran. Why are you bashing Bush for it? Or do you just like to blame him for everything.

Posted by: Mike | May 19, 2008 3:13 PM | Report abuse

Maggots:

Were you referring to my post?

Mike:

You do realize that asking someone to "show[] some brain power" is an ad hominem attack itself, right?

Posted by: JakeD | May 19, 2008 3:11 PM | Report abuse

I hope this article gets read by those Clinton supporters out there who are feeling hurt by the primary process and are thinking about sitting out the election. It might be emotionally satisfying to take out your frustrations by voting for McCain, or not voting at all, but you'd also be complicit in four more years of a foreign policy that results in scores of pointless deaths.

Posted by: davestickler | May 19, 2008 3:10 PM | Report abuse

I agree with the poster who said that we can no longer demand that other countries do this or, not do this, or else. Now countries ask, "or else what?" because of what this administration has done to our reputation around the world. We want to bully Iran but we turn a blind eye to what North Korea is doing right in our face. President Bush and his cronies have stretched our military so far, there is no more elasticity. We must talk, it is the right and only thing to do.

Posted by: Shar | May 19, 2008 3:10 PM | Report abuse

Obama is making a mistake comparing Iran with the Soviet Union. When Hillary called Obama naive for wanting to talk to Ahmadinejad without preconditions, she showed more experience and intelligence in foreign policy. It would be nice if we could all wear rose-colored glasses and sing cum by yaa but that is not the real world. Obama is foolish to believe, he can change the radical religious beliefs these people have held for centuries. In Obama's world, he would talk with Iran's President at the same time they are sending weapons to Iran that are killing Americans and to Palestine killing Jews. Way to support our troops Obama.

Posted by: tdl62 | May 19, 2008 3:10 PM | Report abuse

JakeD and Maggots -

Not certain what you are ranting about. I said that both Hagee and Wright are irrelevant and that personal matters should not be a factor when choosing a President.

I guess you guys just feel the need to attack anyone who isn't voting the way you are, even if they agree with you. Nice.

Posted by: Mike | May 19, 2008 3:10 PM | Report abuse

McBush: Over One Trillion Pissed Away

Posted by: Ronald McDonald | May 19, 2008 3:10 PM | Report abuse

Phxflyer:

On September 12, 2001, did you think the U.S. would be able to go EIGHT YEARS without another terrorist attack? I know I expected another one within the year. The Bush Doctrine HAS worked -- I'm sure that 99% of Americans thought at the time we would be hit again -- worse-case scenario: terrorists are killing Americans in foreign cities over there rather than in American cities right here in our own backyard.

Posted by: JakeD | May 19, 2008 3:09 PM | Report abuse

Roy -

The adolescent neocon refusal to talk with other nations, friends or foes, reflects their immaturity and typical narrowmindednes.
------------------------------

Hey great ad hominem attack. How about showing some brain power and explaining why Obama's policies are better and what the end result will be?

Nah, just stick to demonizing anyone who doesn't share your views. It's much easier.

Posted by: Mike | May 19, 2008 3:06 PM | Report abuse

first: no 9/11 since 9/11 is a silly point. there wasn't one before. and 9/11 was on Bush's watch. how do you claim credit for preventing another 9/11 when you are the only president to have one?

second: Obama has never suggested a splashy get to know you summit with all the fanfare with Iran as soon as he takes office. What he has said is that preconditions are silly. There's not much to talk about if you demand that your terms be met before you meet. Obama has said that with the right preparation, under the right circumstances, at the right time, and for the right purpose, he would meet. What matters is the message. "I will turn Tehran into a lake if you attack Israel," is not appeasement, and is hardly a message that will hand Iran a propaganda victory, or make Ahmadinejad more popular with the people who hate him or strengthen his hold on power (any meeting's message is revealed to the people of the other country at the same time). McCain's silly posturing is the truly naive and ridiculous pandering to the crowd.

Posted by: JoeT1 | May 19, 2008 3:06 PM | Report abuse

Mike:

If Rev. Wright is relevent, then so is Pastor Hagee. Or do you prefer to drop the BS and discuss the real issues?

Posted by: Maggots | May 19, 2008 3:05 PM | Report abuse

David:

Of course not (I don't expect the Independent-Party candidate to win regardless).

Mike:

Of course you are voting for McCain -- you made that very clear in your post -- too bad you haven't learned the lesson with ANY politician who lies (whether about their personal lives or something YOU think is an "important issue").

Posted by: JakeD | May 19, 2008 3:05 PM | Report abuse

bye, bye Johnny.

Posted by: kloro | May 19, 2008 3:05 PM | Report abuse

longwalksinparis.blogspot.com = dispenser of lame & meaningless slogans

Posted by: Mike | May 19, 2008 3:04 PM | Report abuse

The adolescent neocon refusal to talk with other nations, friends or foes, reflects their immaturity and typical narrowmindednes.
Like it or not, Iran is a part of the world's reality and American can not continue to stick its religious fundamentalist head in the sand and ignore other nations or peoples.

McCain's refusal to talk to Iran reflects "more-of-the-same: reckless judgment,"

Posted by: Roy | May 19, 2008 3:03 PM | Report abuse

But Reagan and Bush are great leaders for selling Iran arms and for putting Saddam Hussein in power.

What kind of judgement is that?

Oh, yeah - those guys were white, so they're okay.

Posted by: HoracePManure | May 19, 2008 3:03 PM | Report abuse

edsbowlingshoe -
A vote for McCain is a vote for a 3rd George W Bush term......

---------------

Well, Ed, now we know that you can bleat out the Democrat talking points. Any chance you might be able to make a critique of your own based on something besides partisan hatred?

Posted by: Mike | May 19, 2008 3:03 PM | Report abuse

"You Obamaniacs better pray there's not another 9/11 attack (or worse) before the elections ..."

And if there is, it will only further demonstrate the complete failure of the Bush / McCain doctrine.

Posted by: Phxflyer | May 19, 2008 3:02 PM | Report abuse

GOP = Dead American Kids

Posted by: longwalksinparis.blogspot.com | May 19, 2008 3:02 PM | Report abuse

Tomorrow's headline from this geezer: "McCain blast Obama for willingness to listen."

A vote for McCain is a vote for a 3rd George W Bush term......and a vote for another Bush term is borderline insane.

Posted by: edsbowlingshoe | May 19, 2008 3:00 PM | Report abuse

Mike:

You do realize that Hagee was not McCain's "spiritual advisor" and Pastor for 20 years, right? It seems as if Obama LYING about Rev. Wright is not a "serious issue" for you. Did you also think that Bill Clinton lying about Gennifer Flowers was insignificant and completely related to how he would perform in office?

----------------------

Not certain what you are ranting about here. I am voting for McCain, not Obama.

And yes, I do think Clinton's lying about Gennifer Flowers was inignifigant and unrelated to how he would perform in office.

I am much more interested in the candidate's positions on Iran than in their personal lives.

Posted by: Mike | May 19, 2008 3:00 PM | Report abuse

Accusing Sen. Barack Obama of "inexperience and reckless judgment," Sen. John McCain blasted his likely Democratic opponent on Monday....

This from a guy who needs a program in order to identify the players in the Middle East, and whose legendary temper issues forth without warning in hot-headed words and sometimes in fisticuffs.

Posted by: FirstMouse | May 19, 2008 3:00 PM | Report abuse

Oh, Let the swift boating and saying that he said when he didnt say stuff begin anew.

Maybe that stuff won't fly this time..

Posted by: John | May 19, 2008 2:58 PM | Report abuse

Nothing reckless about talking... look at all the American coffins John McCain and the GOP war chorus are responsible for.

Posted by: longwalksinparis.blogspot.com | May 19, 2008 2:58 PM | Report abuse


Somebody needs to whisper into John McCain's ear that "basic realities of international relations" is that the Bush approach which he promises to continue has only made us weaker and more isolated while Iran and others are stronger. Nobody with a brain would debate this point, so what exactly is McCain babbling about? Does he not realize - especially after the very revealing Sunni-Shia-Iran-Where-Am-I fiasco - that he is defending a failed and ignorant worldview?


Posted by: sequoia | May 19, 2008 2:58 PM | Report abuse

It seems to me that 50 years ago, Iran was a new and fragile democracy. However, Iran nationalized her oil reserves, which had been run by BP. Churchill was LIVID!
He contacted the American Secretary of State? Dulles, who called his brother running the CIA and told him to help Churchill. That Dulles sent the grandson of Theodore Roosevelt to Iran, where he dutifully financed a revolution, and installed the Shah of Iran as a lackey dictator.
Obama is right to talk to these people and Bush doesn't like that idea at all, as this old dirt will become public knowledge again and people that he dines with regularly will be embarrassed.
McKain is a real "Chuckles the Clown". In point of fact the Republicans have NO viable contestant for the Presidency.
So, Obama can do what he wants and say what he wants. It's almost America as it USED to be.

Posted by: Victor Compton | May 19, 2008 2:58 PM | Report abuse

Republicans always talk about preconditions. You can't say "unless they do this" or "unless they promise not to do that" will we talk to them. That simply doesn't work with countries like Iran. Things of interest to them do work, like discussing lifting of sanctions if they stop arming militants. There can't be preconditions, only dialog.

Posted by: Elektrik | May 19, 2008 2:58 PM | Report abuse

The ("completely discredited") Bush Doctrine:

"We will make no distinction between the terrorists who committed these acts and those who harbor them."

You Obamaniacs better pray there's not another 9/11 attack (or worse) before the elections ...

Posted by: JakeD | May 19, 2008 2:51 PM

So are you hoping for a terrorist attack to help your parties chances in November?

Posted by: David | May 19, 2008 2:58 PM | Report abuse

It is reckless not to negotiate. McCain is showing the inflexibility on this issue that betrays both his own lack of major foreign policy experience and his own advanced age. Add his well-known hair-trigger temper to the picture and we have a scenario of major disasters if he's elected.

Posted by: casandra1 | May 19, 2008 2:57 PM | Report abuse

Mike:

You do realize that Hagee was not McCain's "spiritual advisor" and Pastor for 20 years, right? It seems as if Obama LYING about Rev. Wright is not a "serious issue" for you. Did you also think that Bill Clinton lying about Gennifer Flowers was insignificant and completely related to how he would perform in office?

Posted by: JakeD | May 19, 2008 2:56 PM | Report abuse

Kudos to the liberals on this board who are such accomplished name callers. You guys are really impressive!

Posted by: Mike | May 19, 2008 2:56 PM | Report abuse

It is reckless not to negotiate. McCain is showing the inflexibility on this issue that betrays both his own lack of major foreign policy experience and his own advanced age. Add his well-known hair-trigger temper to the picture and we have a scenario of major disasters if he's elected.

Posted by: casandra1 | May 19, 2008 2:56 PM | Report abuse

McCain is McBush all right! That's all we need. Another "shoot first, ask questions later" diplomacy line...

Posted by: Anonymous | May 19, 2008 2:55 PM | Report abuse

Why not talk? Iran is not the "threat" that Bush and McCain claim it is. They have dismantled their nuclear program and yet the US is talking with North Korea which has nuclear arms and has used much stronger rhetoric against the US. Let's not forget that North Korea and Iran were both part of Bush's "Axis of Evil" so why is it "appeasement" to talk to one nation and OK to talk to the other.

Diplomacy is almost always a better option than war. Talking to someone is not giving in but it seems more likely that we can find at least some areas of agreement with Iran by talking to them rather than shutting them out or, as McCain seems to prefer, bombing them.

War with Iran is unjustified but in practical terms it just won't work. US forces are already over-extended in Iraq so how does McCain think that we can prevail in Iran, a nation with 5 times the population as Iraq?

Posted by: David | May 19, 2008 2:54 PM | Report abuse

I like the fact he's willing to get in there and talk to him. I'll vote either for Obama or Hillary. Speaking specifically of Obama, however, whether or not he can get him to come to some understanding, at the end of the day Obama still talked to him. I see that as bold and an intelligent move. I see that as an act of leadership. At least Obama will collect his information from the guy first hand and personal. I trust Obama's judgment. I trust him to think wisely given this issue, and act as necessary.

Dems White House '08

Posted by: Obama2008 | May 19, 2008 2:54 PM | Report abuse

ddee:

For one thing, no terrorist attacks on U.S. soil since 2001.

Posted by: JakeD | May 19, 2008 2:53 PM | Report abuse

At least we are talking about policy instead of Rev Wright or Hagee.

We have a serious issue and two candidates staking out serious positions on it.

Now maybe Obama can join McCain in keeping the debate clean by not calling his opponent "dishonest" while staking out his own policy statement.

Posted by: Mike | May 19, 2008 2:53 PM | Report abuse

This old man is crazy and out of touch. He has lost his bearings.

I just hope the margin of Obama's victory is large enough that mcsame is humiliated and retires from politics.

He is past his time,and his prime.

Posted by: thopaine | May 19, 2008 2:52 PM | Report abuse

The ("completely discredited") Bush Doctrine:

"We will make no distinction between the terrorists who committed these acts and those who harbor them."

You Obamaniacs better pray there's not another 9/11 attack (or worse) before the elections ...

Posted by: JakeD | May 19, 2008 2:51 PM | Report abuse

all i can say is - how is the not talking working out for us?

Posted by: ddee | May 19, 2008 2:51 PM | Report abuse


Pfffft - LOL @ Crazy Ol' Grampa McSame.

Why do Republicans ALWAYS need:

1) A Bogeyman

2) A Daddy figure to make it all better?

Iran has of course done nothing to us, but that doesn't stop the crazy McHillary war drumming and scaremongering. Iran is certainly a CONCERN, but considering John McBush's War Against Iraq has pretty much weakened us to the point we would never be able to confront Iran, it's awfully silly for him to blast Obama for pledging to find a diplomatic solution to our differences over starting ANOTHER war we'll lose.

And of course, Robert Gates, Condi Rice, Colin Powell and pretty much everybody with an knowledge about international relations agress we have to talk to Iran.

McLame doesn't even know the difference between Sunni and Shia, what that has to do with Iraq, doesn't know CZECHOSLOVAKIA hasn't been a country for, oh, ALMOST 20 YEARS and he expects us to listen to him on foreign policy? Wasn't his gullibility re: Iraq what got us into that mess to begin with?

Time for a change. Obama '08. Smart foreign policy based on reality.

Posted by: Shawn | May 19, 2008 2:50 PM | Report abuse

So, John, I guess Tony Blair was wrong to meet with the "terrorist" Gerry Adams and the IRA? How many bombings have there been since then?

Posted by: vacymro | May 19, 2008 2:49 PM | Report abuse

Obama has the "high road" in this issue. Talking to enemies is the only way to begin to break down the barriers and perhaps construct a road to peace. People who are afraid of talking unless preconditions are met are people who fear that they cannot hold their own in such a face-to-face meeting. Based on what I have seen of both Bush and McCain, no wonder that they would choose not to talk directly with the "spokesman" for Iran. Personally, I think talking is a much better option than war. In fact, if a good chat could avert war, I am in favor of it. By the way, do not remind me about Hitler. To my knowledge, Hitler is one-of-a-kind. However, these last seven years under Bush have taught me a lot about how it is possible for an educated populace like Germany to support a Hitler. We forget that Germany by and large was a Christian country during the Hitler era. It does seem that there are too many of us who are willing to sell our liberties/freedoms to have a little bit of additional security. I thought we were fighting for our freedoms, not our enslavement.

Posted by: Earl C | May 19, 2008 2:49 PM | Report abuse

McCain is like Bush, it doesn't matter how many times his talking points are disproved and shot down, he just keeps on like the Energizer bunny, talking the same line of garbage. Sen. McCain, what is it you don't understand about "Those tactics you're so fond of, they're what got us into the mess we're in. That's why we want a change!"

Posted by: JimBob | May 19, 2008 2:48 PM | Report abuse

Reckless and inexperienced?

Obama at least had the judgement to foresee the problems that have arisen in Iraq.

McCain's experience consists of backing a disastrous war launched on completely false pretences.

I can't think of anything any US president has ever done that was as reckless as launching the Iraq war.

Posted by: OD | May 19, 2008 2:48 PM | Report abuse

America should not fear to negotiate and be bold enough to address its enemies head on. I expected more courage from Sen. McCain

Posted by: jlm062002 | May 19, 2008 2:48 PM | Report abuse

McCain can bluster all he wants about recklessness, but no mere summit will do more to empower & embolden Iran than the failed occupation of Iraq has already done.

McCain & GWB fool nobody but themselves with this nonsense.

Posted by: Scott in PacNW | May 19, 2008 2:47 PM | Report abuse

Obama must negotiate with Iran and make them give up nuclear weapons. But I wondered, what would Iran want from us in return? Our withdrawal from Iraq and Afghanistan or withdraw support to Israel? what would President Mahmud Ahmadinejad demand in return that they stop supporting Iraqi militia?

Posted by: voteforamerica | May 19, 2008 2:47 PM | Report abuse

What is "reckless" is to continue the policies of the Bush administration, which is exactly what McCain proposes to do.

Anyone who does not see the complete failure of the Bush / McCain Doctrine is simply blind.

Posted by: Phxflyer | May 19, 2008 2:46 PM | Report abuse

SINDEY = SIDNEY

(Freudian slip ; )

Posted by: JakeD | May 19, 2008 2:45 PM | Report abuse

Is it too late for Mr. Bloomberg to get into the race?

Posted by: joeparadis | May 19, 2008 2:44 PM | Report abuse

Mccain is so stupid he is painting himself into a corner. He has to lose on this argument because all he has to point to is policy that doesn't work and his idea to do the same thing. I love it, Obama will come out looking the best on this thing. I love the way it just turns Mccain into Bush. At a point you won't be able to tell them apart. What an idiot.

Posted by: Anonymous | May 19, 2008 2:44 PM | Report abuse

Sally or Huh:

Do either of you agree with MR. FORD: "I'll concede, you cannot meet with foreign leaders, with terrorists, rather, and those who lead rogue nations without some conditions."

Posted by: JakeD | May 19, 2008 2:43 PM | Report abuse

McSame is doing a great job. Obama will be shoe in if McSame keeps up his tired, old message of hate.

Posted by: Big Walt | May 19, 2008 2:43 PM | Report abuse

If you need more proof that McCain and Bush are full of CRAP, here it is:

Ramon: Israel's government holding talks with Hamas

By Haaretz Service

Tags: Israel, Hamas, Diplomacy

Vice Premier Haim Ramon on Monday acknowledged that Israel was holding talks with Hamas, in violation of a government decision not to conduct talks with the Islamist Palestinian group until it complies with the demands of the Quartet.

http://www.haaretz.com/hasen/spages/985012.html


Posted by: Anonymous | May 19, 2008 2:41 PM | Report abuse

Joe:

I believe that John SINDEY McCain summarized: we need to "communicate with Iran our concerns about their behavior" at an "appropriate" diplomatic level. But, he said, "a summit meeting with the president of the United States, which is what Senator Obama proposes, is the most prestigious card we have to play in international diplomacy. It is not a card to be played lightly." In fact, the Democratic candidate just talking about such a meeting could entrench Ahmadinejad and lead to a nuclear attack on Israel. Do you want a worser-case scenario?

Posted by: JakeD | May 19, 2008 2:41 PM | Report abuse

This is a winning argument for John McCain among all but the very young who don't necessarily have a history of former administrations.

JFK said what he did and then held a summit with Kruschev which ended up having Kruschev test him because he thought he was weak.

Nixon met with the Chineese only after very long and arduous pre-meetings and discussions notably by Kissinger and we knew what the result of that summit would be before it happpened. Reagan only met with the Soviets in his 6th year in Office again after long pre-meetings.

Obama is truly naive if he doesn't make clear that he will not meet with the leaders of Iran himself without some preconditions and major discussions before hand. All he has to look at is Ahmadinejad's performance at Columbia University and the UN to know what a disaster that would be.

I think McCain can make mincemeat of Obama on foreign policy if Obama is not careful and I will vote for Obama if he is the Democratic nominee. But for this main reason I still hope Clinton is the nominee.

Obama's speech about challenging McCain anytime and anyplace on a foreign policy debate will be ok as long as McCain doesn't take him up on it.

Posted by: peter DC | May 19, 2008 2:40 PM | Report abuse

How dare the old man accuse our dear beloved leader Obama? Obama is creating fear in Iranian President already because here is a new President who is willing to sit and talk with him without pre-conditions. This is unbelieveble. Too good to be true? President Mahmud Ahmadinejad can no longer spew vitriol against Israel whom they have hated all over their life who recently called it 'stinkin corpse'.

I hope Obama will take President Mahmud Ahmadinejad to a private room and make sense to him and gently ask him to stop supporting the Iraqi militias. Then we can withdraw our troops from Iraq much quicker. May Obama bless USA.

Posted by: voteforamerica | May 19, 2008 2:38 PM | Report abuse

Reagan, the man - would talk to anybody, anytime and was very effective at it, I might add. Its not like you just land a plane and say, where's your president, you loons.

Posted by: Huh | May 19, 2008 2:37 PM | Report abuse

"Well, it is "reckless" to meet with Ahmadinejad without preconditions..."

Why?

Posted by: Joe | May 19, 2008 2:35 PM | Report abuse

a summit meeting with the president of the United States,..., is the most prestigious card we have to play in international diplomacy. It is not a card to be played lightly."

Has John McCain read the results of his leader, George W. Bush, latest playing of the prestigious card? Interesting analogy.

Posted by: William Keller | May 19, 2008 2:33 PM | Report abuse

So called "conditions" need to be decided based on that country's situation and the world situation at that time. Setting conditions without knowning the situation is foolish.

Posted by: Sally | May 19, 2008 2:33 PM | Report abuse

"My first wish is to see this plague of mankind, war, banished from the earth."

--George Washington

Posted by: GW | May 19, 2008 2:30 PM | Report abuse

Robert Hewson:

Get away from "rogue nations" then if you want to argue that China (population 1.3 billion) was a rogue nation at the time. As I've pointed out, repeatedly, neither leader from China nor the Soviet Union were "terrorists" (as that is defined by ANY political scientist) when the American Presidents you mentioned met with them.

Posted by: JakeD | May 19, 2008 2:16 PM | Report abuse

MR. FORD: "I'll concede, you cannot meet with foreign leaders, with terrorists, rather, and those who lead rogue nations without some conditions."

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/24693653/page/2/print/1/displaymode/1098/

Posted by: JakeD | May 19, 2008 2:12 PM | Report abuse

Re: Iran, "Appeasement":

From "Head of State"
http://headofstate.blogspot.com/2008/05/hot-bush-injection-brief-history-of.html

Monday, May 19, 2008
Hot Bush "Injection": A Brief History of Appeasement

It was this morning, while on the elliptical machine, that I heard the 20th (when I began counting) reference to Bush having "injected" foreign policy, via his raising of "appeasement" before the Knesset, into the Democratic campaign debate.

Aside from the face that a Bush injection would likely require more investigation from the FDA and CDC than vaccinations laced with 50% thimerosal, the discussion, which has shown surprising legs, has revealed a remarkable lack of basic knowledge about the distinctions between negotiation (e.g. Nixon's intervention with, at the time a rogue Chinese state, which largely prevented conflict and helped to usher China into the family of nations; ) and appeasement--ranging from the Kevin James school of international policy negotiation through utter lack of knowledge to more informed but still significantly incomplete or incorrect understandings of appeasement as it has been used in this context.

Therefore, I provide you with brief, fully accurate history of the "appeasement" that has been raised in these debates, so that those who wish to use actual fact in advancing their arguments can do so (For those who wish to continue to rely on insinuation, distortion, or the ritual, repetitive, seemingly talismanic use of the cry "He's an appeaser! You know! Like Munich! Like Chamberlain!" without knowing what this actually means. Please proceed to Remedial History, room 101B. No gum).

The Munich Agreement:

The Brief Pre-History of Munich:

Hitler, levered into power in January of 1933 (ironically after their first significant national election outcome decrease in 1932, after which they very well may have faded into their earlier insignificance) through the dramatic miscalculations of former Chancellor Von Papen (who, in his proposed role as Vice-Chancellor, hoped to be the "power behind the throne", and to return to the Chancellorship) and prominent Nationalist Alfred Hugenberg, among others to isolate and co-opt Hitler in a cabinet of Conservative Nationalists ("We've hired him"--Von Papen; "We've boxed him in"-Hugenberg), who persuaded the reluctant, aging President Hindenberg to accept this agreement, soon gained primacy and control over the cabinet, government, and increasingly the nation, through a series of questionable legislative (e.g. "The Enabling Act") and viciously revolutionary and counter-revolutionary (i.e., the elimination of other political parties, the Rohm Purge, brutal and cynical anti-Semitic actions by the SA, the Gleischaltung or "Coordination" of virtually all German organizations and press in 1934) actions.

After gaining such control, and with an autarkic economy that, from the start, invested huge sums in rearmament, Hitler brought the German military into coordination as well, under the aegis of the compliant General Blomberg, and with a shared mission of challenging the restraints placed upon German armament under the Versailles Treaty which followed World War I (Hitler's railing against this treaty had been a key element in the rise of the Nazis to power, particularly in the most dire economic phases of the Weimar Republic). In a series of shocking and escalating violations of this treaty, Germany announced the reestablishment of the German Air Force (1935), the reoccupation of the Rhineland (1936) and the Anschluss of Austria (1937), Hitler began an express drive for expansion conveyed as a correction of the Versailles Treaty, but in fact a clearly stated intent to increase the "living space" (Lebensraum) of Germany, and to attain hegemony in Europe (and, eventually, beyond).

In 1938, under the pretext of incorporating the Sudeten Germans who lived in Czechoslovakia (and utilizing Czech Nazi sympathizers to provoke manufactured "incidents" among this group), Hitler continued this expansionist drive by threatening, beginning in the famous "Weekend Crisis" of May 20-22, 1938, to attack Czechoslovakia on behalf of the Sudetens. Months of anti-Czech propaganda created by the Goebbels-controlled ministry continued through June, July and August. Following a vicious tirade at the conclusion of the Party Congress against the Czechs on Sept. 12, threatening action if the "issues" regarding the Sudetenland were not resolved. This provoked a wave of fear and disturbance across France and the Sudetenland.

As a result, on September 15, Neville Chamberlain flew to Munich to meet with Hitler. Hitler, in this first meeting, presented Chamberlain with an apparent fait accompli, stating that he would settle the matter himself "one way or another", clearly implying force. Chamberlain met this with the remark that under such conditions, there was no further point in talking--after which, Hitler tactically receded and stated that if the question of incorporation of the Sudetenland was open, discussions should continue. Hitler's ultimate goal here was to use the tactic of Sudeten independence to force Czechoslovakia to cede the Sudeten potion of its nation to Germany, claiming that "we want to Czechs"--e.g., the remaining part of the country--and that without such an incorporation, he would attack--thus unleashing the protective guarantees of France to Czechoslovakia, and thereby, a second World War.

Under such pressure, France and Britain placed weight on Czechoslovakia to cede the Sudetenland. Hitler, Mussolini, Chamberlain and Daladier (the French premier) provided the basis for the Munich Agreement--which indeed carved off the Sudetenland, leading to Chamberlain's notorious statement of "peace in our time"--set along side Goebbels statement that "We have achieved everything we wanted according to the small plan, while the big plan is...for the moment, not realizable".

Hitler, in fact, intended to incorporate the rest of Czechoslovakia--and was described as disappointed that the agreement had denied him the opportunity for a war against the Czechs that would allow him this full territorial conquest in a single step. In March of 1939, following a similar propaganda barrage regarding Slovakian nationalist independence, Hitler threatened Czech President Benes with invasion, should he not cede the rest of the nation. Under such threat, Benes collapsed, and the Germans seized the remaining portion of Czechoslovakia without resistance.

Ironically, these constant risk-all gambits led Hitler to his fatal mistake--the conquest of Poland, which, although "victorious", led Britain, France, and ultimately the USA to enter the fight against Germany, and Germany to seek to end the battle against these enemies by removing their most likely ally--the Soviet Union--a combined two front battle which led to the downfall of Nazi Germany.

This was appeasement.

The appeasement here was agreeing to give away Czechoslovakia--carving it into sections, and giving the section, and eventually the nation, away. It was shameful--and wrong.


Negotiation: Talking To Leaders

Despite the endless rhetoric of the past week, negotiation is not appeasement.

Two of many examples:

Nixon's Rapprochement With China:

Despite the well-known failings of the Nixon Presidency, Nixon's engagement with China remains a signal achievement. Note that Nixon, throughout his career, was an ardent fighter of Communism. Thus, we might have fully expected him to take the "negotiation is weakness" position with a country that, at the time, was regarded as a rogue nation in the West.

Nevertheless, this fervent anti-Communist chose to negotiate--a marked change from previous U.S. policy--and continued to do so even as highly inflammatory border attacks occurred between China and the Soviet Union in 1969, stating that "We simply cannot afford to leave China outside the family of nations." (a statement that would likely draw errant fire of commentators from the Right if it were uttered today). With a persistent diplomacy through 1969-1972, culminating in a meeting with Chou en Lai, these negotiations led to a dramatic thawing of relations with both China and the Soviet Union--where, in meetings with Leonid Brezhnev, an anti-ballistic missile treaty, a trade agreement worth a billion dollars, and a SALT treaty were signed.

Here, talk--negotiation--decried as weakness this past week--and at the time of these negotiations--led to success.

Reagan and Gorbachev

Reagan, of course, was noted for referring to the Soviet Union as the "Evil Empire."

Despite this stance, he too was willing to negotiate with Gorbachev in the interests of nuclear disarmament--and despite the objections of many on the Right, whose statements at the time regarding the weakness of negotiation could be easily grafted onto the present debates.

As we know, Reagan's meetings, according to Alan Greenspan, "started the sequence of geopolitical initiatives that led Mr. Gorbachev to figuratively tear down the Berlin Wall", and contributed to the break up of the Soviet Union.

Many from the right called for aggressive military action--for missiles first, rather than negotiation
.
Talk--negotiation--led to success.

Note that in each case, the President talked with a leader who they regarded as hostile--in the face of those who argued then, as they do now, that talking--negotiation--signifies weakness.

In each case, talking--strong, informed negotiation--did not result in appeasement of the aggressor, but instead resulted in the desired outcome--in one case, the component breakup of the aggressor nation--in another the end of a threat of nuclear conflict--without a single loss of life.

Negotiation is not appeasement.

When negotiation is chosen, however, it will be the case that those who simply wished for the visceral strike--the simplistic first solution of subduing an enemy through the use of might--will not find its satisfaction. We have seen the results of this position, throughout the years--from the events recounted in the first section, to the present.

Perhaps, in negotiation, it is *they* who have been appeased.

If so, given history--this was a favorable outcome indeed.

Cite:
Head of State
http://headofstate.blogspot.com/2008/05/hot-bush-injection-brief-history-of.html

Posted by: Robert Hewson | May 19, 2008 2:08 PM | Report abuse

Well, it is "reckless" to meet with Ahmadinejad without preconditions -- hopefully McCain(s) keeps it up -- former Rep. Harold Ford, Jr. (D-TN) admitted as much on "Meet the Press" Sunday as well.

Posted by: JakeD | May 19, 2008 2:04 PM | Report abuse

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