Update: Obama: Calls for Unilateral War Against Pakistan

I can't believe what I just read.  Barack Obama, in an effort to make himself look tough against Hillary Clinton, announced that he would unilaterally send troops to Pakistan to expand the War on Terror.

"Let me make this clear," Obama said in a speech prepared for delivery at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars. "There are terrorists holed up in those mountains who murdered 3,000 Americans. They are plotting to strike again. It was a terrible mistake to fail to act when we had a chance to take out an al-Qaida leadership meeting in 2005. If we have actionable intelligence about high-value terrorist targets and President Musharraf won't act, we will."

http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20070801/ap_o n_el_pr/obama_terrorism

 This follows up on something he said in 2004, when he suggested that he would support launching missles against Pakistan and Iran to prevent extremists from getting nuclear weapons.

Who's acting like Bush now?

For me the most disturbing part is that he is calling not for an international coalition or increased assistance to the Pakistani government, but for a military invasion of a sovereign nation.

Barack Obama called the invasion of Iraq a "stupid war." How is this smarter? Aren't there better options than sending an already-stretched military into a hostile nation with a moderate government?

Think of how empowering such an invasion would be to Iran. The US has toppled regimes in Afghanistan and Iraq. If the Obama plan to invade Pakistan went into play, that would be three nations bordering Iran that would be thrown into a state of civil war and chaos.

I've always praised the Obama of 2002 who opposed the build-up to war and invasion of Iraq. But I have been highly critical of him since. And his current stance on Pakistan has me deeply worried. Especially since he's even more hawkish than Bush on the issue.

Update II:

Let's talk about some important facts.

*1. Pakistan is a US Ally* *2. Pakistan has nuclear weapons. A US invasion could put those weapons into the hands of the terrorists we want to get.* *3. We don't have the military capacity to do this.* Update III:

The Obama campaign must have gotten it's talking points to the Obama listserv. Notice how his followers are all using the same points that all Americans support getting Osama. They are trying to change the debate from a de facto war against Pakistan to a police action against one person. US troops going into Pakistan means war. It just does, people.

Tags: Barack Obama, Hillary Clinton, War with Pakistan (all tags)



A terrible mistake by his strategists

Wow, Obama is following my precise prediction if you recall. I said a couple of days ago he might give a 'major foreign policy speech' in order to battle Hillary's perceived strength.

Here we go. However, I believe the content of this speech is a huge tactic mistake. His message is so confused these days. In the past few days, he has visibilly taken a sharp left turn. But this speech is not welcome news for liberal wing of democratic party. People will start to doubt his sincerity because his foreign policy has a 360 degree turn over the past few days. Willing to sit down with Iranian president without 'preconditions', willing to strike inside Pakistan without 'permission' of a frendly ally? This is getting bizarre.

Obama needs to find a new strategist sooner rather than later. He is in deep hole. LOL.

by areyouready 2007-08-01 05:43AM | 0 recs
Re: A terrible mistake by his strategists

I don't agree with you often, but I think you are correct here.  He tacks to the left and then tacks to the right.  In a diary in January, I called it his "method of moderation." Bobs and weaves so you don't know where he really stands, all while selling a cult of personality.

While I disagree with many stands on the issues by Senator Clinton, I do feel I know where she stands more.

by TomP 2007-08-01 05:47AM | 0 recs
Mr. LOL and TomP agree, wow

Surprise, surprise.. Edwards and Clinton Surrogates gangs up on Obama... . What are you guys afraid of? I thought Obama was fading and on his last throes if you believe that just ignore him.

Obama has been consistent on this. He has a better worldview than Clinton and Edwards will ever have in their life experiences and being in the United States Senate.

This is Good news for Obama because the more the so-called netroots like you hate Obama the better chance he has for the nomination, ask John Kerry.

Obama did not say he will unilaterally attack Pakistan but I guess as a supporter of the bender of the truth, the fasts absolutely means nothing. Or would either of you please show me where he said that he will unilaterally attack Pakistan? I think not.

Obama has it just right.

by ameri 2007-08-01 06:06AM | 0 recs
How's this for a fact?

Analysts say an invasion could risk destabilizing Pakistan, breeding more militancy and undermining Musharraf. The Pakistani Foreign Office, protective of its national sovereignty, has warned that U.S. military action would violate international law and be deeply resented.

A military invasion could be risky, given Pakistan's hostile terrain and the suspicion of its warrior-minded tribesmen against uninvited outsiders.

http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20070801/ap_o n_el_pr/obama_terrorism

by david mizner 2007-08-01 06:13AM | 0 recs
Re: How's this for a fact?

"an invasion could risk destabilizing Pakistan"

This might go down as the understatement of the year.

by DoIT 2007-08-01 06:25AM | 0 recs
Desperate Move- Edwards BIGGEST Beneficiary

I don't know what made him decide to throw this major foreign policy twist. ( it looks & smells as a major tactical move to match Hillary Clinton)

But I predict that this will really hurt Obama among many core Democrats who are currently supporting him or were considering to support him.

Redeploying our troops from Iraq to another Muslim country? Invading another country?

This pretty much goes opposite what 99% of Democrats & the overwhelming majority of American voters want- "sending our fighting men & women home".

I predict Edwards is going to be the BIGGEST beneficiary of this BLUNDER & you will see polls in the next 7-14 days show an Obama DROP of support. Terrible move!

by fightingLadyinblue 2007-08-01 07:53AM | 0 recs
You attack and attack and

pose as anti-war, and then you support the invasion of a sovereign nation with nucleur weapons.

If Obama says it, it's okay.  No consistency.  It is not about issues at all.

I catagorically reject Obama's hawkish call for war.  

by TomP 2007-08-01 06:17AM | 0 recs
Re: You attack and attack and

Obama doesn't have supporters, he has followers. You have it right, If Obama says it's ok then it is.

I knew the lemmings would hop on board.

by DoIT 2007-08-01 06:27AM | 0 recs
Re: Obama says yes, you say yes??? LOL

" If Obama says its ok, its ok. You are his follower, not just a supporter"???? :)

Did saying that make you feel real good & proud of yourself?

Well it may have made you circle the wagons but your idol just made a Huge Mistake.

Your "movement" will continue but this thing is over.

If Obama had an "R" in front of his name, that's a different story. The guy forgot that he is Democrat. LOL

by fightingLadyinblue 2007-08-01 07:59AM | 0 recs
More on Obama's position.

http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20070801/ap_o n_el_pr/obama_terrorism

WASHINGTON - Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama said Wednesday that he would send troops into Pakistan to hunt down terrorists even without local permission if warranted -- an attempt to show strength when his chief rival has described his foreign policy skills as naive.

The Illinois senator warned Pakistani President Gen. Pervez Musharraf that he must do more to shut down terrorist operations in his country and evict foreign fighters under an Obama presidency, or Pakistan will risk a U.S. troop invasion and losing hundreds of millions of dollars in U.S. military aid.


Analysts say an invasion could risk destabilizing Pakistan, breeding more militancy and undermining Musharraf. The Pakistani Foreign Office, protective of its national sovereignty, has warned that U.S. military action would violate international law and be deeply resented.

A military invasion could be risky, given Pakistan's hostile terrain and the suspicion of its warrior-minded tribesmen against uninvited outsiders.

Congress passed legislation Friday that would tie aid from the United States to Islamabad's efforts to stop al-Qaida and the Taliban from operating in its territory. President Bush has yet to sign it.

by TomP 2007-08-01 06:27AM | 0 recs
Re: A terrible mistake by his strategists

Taylor Marsh covered this in a recent post.

Check it out.

http://www.taylormarsh.com/archives_view .php?id=25992

by lonnette33 2007-08-01 06:50AM | 0 recs
Obama copies Edwards - again!

As president, Edwards will create a "Marshall Corps" of 10,000 professionals, modeled on the Reserves systems, who will work on stabilization and humanitarian missions in weak and failing states that can become hotbeds for terrorism and create regional instability.
http://www.johnedwards.com/issues/terror ism/

Edwards plan of 10,000 PROFESSIONALS is superior to Obama's thousands of "young people."

by annefrank 2007-08-01 01:58PM | 0 recs
Do you mean 180 degree turn ...

... or do you mean he has gone full circle, back to where he started.

by BruceMcF 2007-08-01 06:08AM | 0 recs
Pakistan has been a major breeding ground

for terrorists along with Afghanistan.

by NuevoLiberal 2007-08-01 08:38AM | 0 recs
This diary with its BULLSHIT title

has been responded to by Geekesque indirectly. Please see my myDD crossposting: What Obama actually said about fighting terrorism (Cross Post).

by NuevoLiberal 2007-08-01 10:12AM | 0 recs
Re: This diary with its BULLSHIT title

"has been responded to by Geekesque indirectly"

So who the fuck is he and why should I care?

by DoIT 2007-08-01 10:39AM | 0 recs
Re: This diary with its BULLSHIT title

He is a poster on Kos.

by Ajsmom 2007-08-01 01:21PM | 0 recs
Re: A terrible mistake by his strategists

Obama isn't much of a chess player, it would appear. Clinton just checkmated him on foreign policy. She implied he was weak. So he moves to look aggressive and robust. Now he's angered the doves and make his "Bush lite" Comment seem rather hypocritical.

by Mayor McCheese 2007-08-01 01:14PM | 0 recs
Re: Obama: Unilateral War With Pakistan


by areyouready 2007-08-01 05:44AM | 0 recs
Re: Obama: Unilateral War With Pakistan

Obama seems to vacilate between pointing out his 2002 speech opposed to the Iraq Invasion and acting more hawkish than Hillary.

It reflects my fundamental problem with him.  Other than ambition, what does he really believe?

This kind of war-like talk is bad.  

by TomP 2007-08-01 05:44AM | 0 recs
Re: Obama: Unilateral War With Pakistan
Even the crazies right winger such as Bush-Cheney and freepers will not advocate such crazy things.
It is just bizarre.
by areyouready 2007-08-01 05:47AM | 0 recs
I'd love to see

an Edwards press release with the word "sabre ratlling" in it!!

by TarHeel 2007-08-01 06:36AM | 0 recs
Re: Edwards benefits the most

With this major blunder, Edwards should benefit the most.

He should attract many of Obama's supporters. Those who are " Anybody but Hillary" Democrats.

What a Major mistake.

He'll probably spend the next several months just trying to EXPLAIN & DEFEND his position instead of focusing on other issues.

by fightingLadyinblue 2007-08-01 08:02AM | 0 recs
Is Hillary

preparing a statement with the word "naive" about 50 times?

by TarHeel 2007-08-01 06:52AM | 0 recs
Re: Is Hillary

I think both Hillary and Edwards would be better advised to stay away from it and let Obama explain what he meant by his statements. I am not sure Obama is thick-skinned enough yet to take criticism. He would go ballistic if anyone else hears criticism from either one.

by rakk12 2007-08-01 06:56AM | 0 recs
Re: Is Hillary

Sorry. That should be "if he hears criticism from either one".

by rakk12 2007-08-01 06:57AM | 0 recs
Re: Obama: Unilateral War With Pakistan

You hit the nail on the head. Obama is a hypocrite, plan and simple.

by lonnette33 2007-08-01 06:53AM | 0 recs
Interesting position.

Does this mean he is finding steam - or is the truth coming out - maybe it's because he is really a war hawk.

All that talk about being against the Iraq war and the puff up about his never being for it position, seems to fade into the sunset (even though he was on record of saying that he didn't have the same information at the time and didn't know how he would have voted had he been in the congress at the time).

Obama - the new war hawk on the block?

Interesting to ponder indeed.

by dk2 2007-08-01 05:49AM | 0 recs
He did imply he is for 'smart' wars.

So this would be an example of what he thinks of as a smart war.

Really truly ... I have seen the clip, something like, "I am not against all wars, but I am against stupid wars".

by BruceMcF 2007-08-01 06:09AM | 0 recs
Re: He did imply he is for 'smart' wars.

This is Exhibit A as an example of a dumb war.

We now have a sitting US Senator and Presidential candidate threatening the invasion of an ally, albeit an ally with problems.  

by TomP 2007-08-01 06:18AM | 0 recs
Oh, not an invasion. An intervention.

There is a difference ... with an intervention, we have to make sure that the cost exceeds the benefits up front, because the plan is to scram after the damage has been done. The proposal to go into Pakistan with guns blazing would seem to qualify.

Indeed, I expect that Obama will stick to the policy but claim that it is not war, but a police action, so that he can say, "I said I was against stupid wars, but I love stupid police actions".

by BruceMcF 2007-08-01 06:37AM | 0 recs

Ok, where'd all this man's good judgement go?

Crossing that border without an invite would seal the downfall of moderate West-friendly forces in Pakistan. We'd see an escalation of anti-American sentiment in nuclear Pakistan faster than you can say, "dumb war."

by Leslie H 2007-08-01 05:51AM | 0 recs
the current government

which has had numerous assasination attempts would fall.

Radicals would take over.

Politically this is really blurring the difference between Hillary.

Regardless of the strategic validity - politically it's dumb.

YOu can't be anti-war while promoting invasion of Pakistan

by TarHeel 2007-08-01 06:04AM | 0 recs
Senator Clinton

If I were senator Clinton or Edwards, I would jump on this. I would politely point out I disagree with Senator Obama's strategy regarding Pakistan.

This is an even worse mistake than last week's skirmish by Obama campaign, IMHO. They are under pressure, and that's exactly when you usually make big mistake.

by areyouready 2007-08-01 05:52AM | 0 recs
Re: Senator Clinton

It may come down to Edwards v. Clinton.  Moderate v. progressive populist.  I think that will be good for the party.  

by TomP 2007-08-01 05:54AM | 0 recs
Re: Senator Clinton

If I were Clinton and Edwards, I would call this development "irresponsible an naive."    :-)

by georgep 2007-08-01 06:41AM | 0 recs
Re: Senator Clinton


by lonnette33 2007-08-01 06:54AM | 0 recs
Re: Senator Clinton

lol you might be perceived as a racist!

by sepulvedaj3 2007-08-01 12:16PM | 0 recs
Re: Obama: Unilateral War With Pakistan

I think every Americans including Pakistan authorities, will agree that Osama is hiding in the moutains in this country and tribes men are protecting him from getting captured....

I see no problem in taking the fight to ALQeada...The public has a problem with the war in Iarq since they had nothing to do with 9-11, but i sincerily dont think how the message of "killing osama bin laden" will hurt Obama unless you believe that we should forget about Osama and just hope he's not planning another 9-11.

Obama had always stated he wasnt "anti-war" but he was "anti-dumb-war"...War on Iraq was dumb...Striking terrorist camps in Aghanistan is smart move and will gain him credit for at least not acting like 'war on terror' is just a bumper sticker and doesnt exist.

by JaeHood 2007-08-01 05:54AM | 0 recs
Re: Obama: Unilateral War With Pakistan

And this would not be a dumb war?

It would alienate all Islamic nations.

by TomP 2007-08-01 05:54AM | 0 recs
Re: Obama: Unilateral War With Pakistan

aren't we already "alienated" from most of these countries?  these countries told BUSH don't invade Iraq.  they were behind us for Afghanistan but strongly told us, do not go into Iraq.  Did we listen?  now we are looking for allies?  now talking to syria, iran?  this is so after the fact, does it matter?  we have botched this up so far, we can't even pick up a phone and "call an ally".  none of these countries want nothing to do with this, because be alientated everyone, what is the use?  yes, to regain any traction, we must have hard talks, with folk that have more "open minds" to negotiate, but this will come with the next administration, AFTER BUSH.  i am looking forward to this speech, indeed.

by icebergslim 2007-08-01 06:04AM | 0 recs
Re: Obama: Unilateral War With Pakistan

are you justifying invading another sovereign nation? And one that has allowed the US great latitude for operations in Pakistan? Unilateralism flies in the face of Obama's diplomacy strategy.

by sepulvedaj3 2007-08-01 07:41AM | 0 recs
Re: Obama: Unilateral War With Pakistan

if we cause an islamicist coup in Pakistan- its WW3. seriously. Nukes israel, gives bomb to al-qaeda, nukes india.

by leewesley 2007-08-01 07:51AM | 0 recs
Re: Iceber, Nothing wrong with Admitting a mistake


There are times when one has to " Take off their blinders".

Just like Jaehood, you two are rabid supporters of Mr. Obama. But when something major like this develop, you have to STOP the PR moves & admit the Blunder.

You loss your credibility fast when you blindly support someone when all signs point to a terribly mistake.

If Hillary Clinton or John Edwards made this speech today, YOU WOULD BE THE FIRST ONE to criticize them & go nuts.

Even if your idol Obama had an "R" next to his name, this announcement would be met by ridicule by many Republicans who are just as sick of this war. But its 10 times worst because Obama is a Democrat.

Com'on now, your idol made a major blunder & you can stop trying to justify it.

I could see you going nuts if it was Hillary Clinton who made this proposal today instead of your idol Obama.

by fightingLadyinblue 2007-08-01 08:14AM | 0 recs
Re: Obama: Unilateral War With Pakistan

I agree that some action would make sense, but it's the conditions he places that worry me.  Unless Musharaff does what I ask, I will push to invade his country.  Yes, because US troops would be welcomed with open arms.  Get the pun?

by Vox Populi 2007-08-01 05:58AM | 0 recs
Obama will say

that he's not calling for an invasion. Just targeted strikes, with missiles.

But again there's a reason why Bush-Cheney hasn't done this, and I don't think it's because they're beholden to Musharraf.

by david mizner 2007-08-01 06:05AM | 0 recs
Re: Obama: Unilateral War With Pakistan

Hey, Vox, guess what?  Your diary has been picked up by the LA Times!  Check it out.  It's under 'this headline and posting' halfway down the page.

Congratulations, sort of.

by Shaun Appleby 2007-08-01 02:45PM | 0 recs

slight of hand. We're talking about Pakistan, and all of sudden you slip this in:

Striking terrorist camps in Aghanistan is smart move

We're talking about Pakistan, a soveriegn country, with a leader holding tenuously to power, a leader who's survived assassination attempts by Muslim radicals. There's reason that not even Bush-Cheney sent troops into northern Pakistan, because it's aboslute quicksand, a web of tribes and thousands of people who are sympathetic to Bin Laden. And because it would possibly hand the country over to AQ type radicals.

by david mizner 2007-08-01 05:59AM | 0 recs
Re: Obama: Unilateral War With Pakistan

This is childish. As president, you don't talk what you might or might not do to such a hypothetical question. This sort of speech is insane.

This is a pure poll-driven speech. He is under pressure, make no mistake.

by areyouready 2007-08-01 06:01AM | 0 recs
Obama's Dumbass War

War on Iraq WAS dumb. War on Pakistan is Fucking STUPID.

Any anti-war credentials Obama had just went out the door. Is he running for the Republican nomination?

He is out Liebermaning Lieberman.

by DoIT 2007-08-01 06:02AM | 0 recs
Re: Obama's Dumbass War

Totally agree DoIT.  

Where have you been?  I missed your Hillary support and "in your face" comments.

by lonnette33 2007-08-01 06:57AM | 0 recs
Re: Obama's Dumbass War

I have to take a break every now and then. But this latest episode has my juices stewing.

by DoIT 2007-08-01 07:13AM | 0 recs
Thanks for the pro-smart-war confirmation.

I was sure that was what he meant ... that he's a hawk, in favor of war in general, but simply against the Iraq invasion itself as a particularly ill-considered war to get into.

And now we have a clearer idea of the kind of smart wars that he favors.

by BruceMcF 2007-08-01 06:12AM | 0 recs
Lemming warmongers

"I see no problem in taking the fight to ALQeada"

Well then sign right up today and volunteer to do just that.

"Obama had always stated he wasnt "anti-war" but he was "anti-dumb-war""

It's a shame Obama isn't anti-stupid war too.

by DoIT 2007-08-01 06:52AM | 0 recs
Re: JaeHood, Sometimes you have to Admit!


There are times when one has to " Take off their blinders".

You loss your credibility fast when you blindly support someone when all signs point to a terribly mistake.

If Hillary Clinton or John Edwards made this speech today, YOU WOULD BE THE FIRST ONE to criticize them & go nuts.

Even if your idol Obama had an "R" next to his name, this announcement would be met by ridicule by many Republicans who are just as sick of this war. But its 10 times worst because Obama is a Democrat.

Com'on now, your idol made a major blunder & you can stop trying to justify it.

There is enough comedy in MYDD. LOL

by fightingLadyinblue 2007-08-01 08:10AM | 0 recs
I can't believe this

This would quite possibly destablize Pakistan and lead to a fundamentalist takeover of the country. A country with nukes. Yeah, that's the way to get Bin Laden: give nukes to his allies.

by david mizner 2007-08-01 05:54AM | 0 recs
Re: I can't believe this

Who knows if he had not already?  Why trust Mushariff?  He has been a dubious player, from day one.  Says one thing, and does another.  And all this largely to bad diplomatic policies with Pakistan and not putting our foot down from the get go.  We could have had bin Laden in 2005, knew where he at, and let him get away and slip into Pakistan.  That is where he is at, we know it.  Are we going to get him?  Probably, not.  We have been overplayed in the Middle East from day one.

by icebergslim 2007-08-01 05:58AM | 0 recs
Re: I can't believe this

Bush is a strong proponent of unilateral war as well.  I don't even hear Clinton making the claim that we should invade Pakistan.  We can't afford an invasion, financially or materially.

by Vox Populi 2007-08-01 05:59AM | 0 recs
Re: I can't believe this

i want to hear the whole speech or read the text first.  we can't even win in iraq, forget pakistan.  the only thing we can get from pakistan is an agreement to snatch bin laden and be done with it.  but war, highly questionable indeed.

by icebergslim 2007-08-01 06:06AM | 0 recs
Re Iceberg, If Hillary gave this speech???


If Hillary Clinton gave this speech today instead of Obama, would you be reacting the way you are now?

Would you ask to read the text of the speech? Would you desperately trying to justify why an attack on Pakistan may make sense.

Com'on! You would all over Clinton!

This is the problem when supporters start going blind. You cannot Idolize politicians. LOL

by fightingLadyinblue 2007-08-01 08:18AM | 0 recs
You need to update your diary

with some important Factsl Pakistan is not Iraq NOR Afghanistan.

1.pakistan is a pro-american regime/dictatorship that very quickly would turn islamic radical  (regimes in afghanistan and Iraq were anti-american

2.  PAKISTAN HAS NUCLEAR WEAPONS which would fall into a radical islamic government's hands.

3.  An air strike is unlikely to be successful.  We couldn't get Bin laden in similar terrain and Saddam in a flat country with missile strikes.   It's "naive" to think we can get rid of thousands of taliban/al qaeda with air strikes.

by TarHeel 2007-08-01 06:35AM | 0 recs
Intentionally misleading and fraudulent title

This is what Obama said, "

If we have actionable intelligence about high-value terrorist targets and President Musharraf won't act, we will.
and I agree with him 100%. Where did he call for a unilateral war against Pakistan?

by ameri 2007-08-01 06:38AM | 0 recs
Re: Intentionally misleading and fraudulent title

In your quote, he just said it doesn't matter what the president of Pakistan says, he will take action.  Unilateral means "alone" or "without support of others."  And yes, it would mean war with Pakistan.

by Vox Populi 2007-08-01 06:44AM | 0 recs
Re: Intentionally misleading and fraudulent title

No, it means if Mushareff does act, we won't.

by horizonr 2007-08-01 10:18AM | 0 recs
Re: Intentionally misleading and fraudulent title

Pervez Musharraff does not have a lot of latituted right now in Pakistan.  He has to think about keeping his country together.  Having the US take unilateral action in Pakistan will only further destabilize Pakistan.

This has to be done with a velvet glove, not a "you're with us or against us" talking point.  Frankly, Obama's foreign policy is looking more naive and more irresponsible with these comments.

by sepulvedaj3 2007-08-01 12:21PM | 0 recs
Re: Intentionally misleading and fraudulent title

Just as Obama's debate response was a gesture of willingness -- not an ironclad promise -- to meet with certain
leaders, I suspect that Obama is using parts of this speech to show what he understands may be necessary and
what he is therefore willing to do, if very specific circumstances dictate, to eliminate terrorist threats to America.

by horizonr 2007-08-01 04:43PM | 0 recs
Re: Obama: Unilateral War With Pakistan

Look, the War is with the ones who killed us on 9/11.  I want to hear and read the whole speech.  Pakistan, shit, we have let them hide bin Laden, we have.  We have turned a blind eye.  Now look at Afghinstan, that shit is cropping up so high now with terrorists it is not even funny.  I am not for war with Pakistan, but WTF?  This is a twist, indeed.

by icebergslim 2007-08-01 05:55AM | 0 recs
Re: Obama: Unilateral War With Pakistan

You are right to hear the statement in context, it is impressive. It is part of a careful and effective takedown on Bush and the way he has conducted this war, but it is also a tough declaration to go after our enemies...the real ones. His preconditions are precise--"actionable intelligence," "the refusal of Musharif to act". Obama is signalling that under certain circumstances he will rise to the occassion of protecting the American people from another attack. He is not talking about a preemptive or unilateral war against a country, he is talking about specifically going after the people who pose a real threat. He is wise not to let someone paint him as some hippy peacenik who will not fight under any circumstance. The full context is running on MSN. I bet people will find his statement reasonable and clear, unlike the sputtering going on in here.

by jazzyjay 2007-08-01 08:13AM | 0 recs
Re: Obama: Unilateral War With Pakistan

a unilateral strike in Pakistan will flare up much more anti-US sentiment in the Middle East than the screw ups GWB has in Iraq.  Pakistan is much more moderate than other countries in the Area, and even if it was just a unilateral strike, Musharraff's government will fall.

There does not have to be a war with Pakistan in order for the fall out to be astronomical.

by sepulvedaj3 2007-08-01 12:24PM | 0 recs
I actually agree with his statement

Maybe Barry is growing a backbone ... or maybe Axlerod is paying for better scripts.

by dpANDREWS 2007-08-01 06:00AM | 0 recs
Re: I actually agree with his statement

I can't believe his DC losing strategists would okay such an insane speech. It will only damage his chance in both primaries and general.

This is really weird.

by areyouready 2007-08-01 06:02AM | 0 recs
He has to move towards the center on security

And hope the peace at any price doves he has attracted will go along for the ride.  It is the only way he is going to expand his level of support.  Its all about the math.

by dpANDREWS 2007-08-01 06:07AM | 0 recs

No. I disagree with your analysis. He's not going to peel off mainstream Clinton support. But this speech alone will doom his chance among many Edwards supporters who may have to choose between Clinton and Obama in the end.

I believe it's the biggest strategic mistake by his campaign so far.

In terms of striking within Pakistan, as a responsible president, you do not talk what you might or might not do to such a sesentive and hypothetical question. You don't rule anything out or anything in. This is just bizarre and dumb from foreign policy angle.

by areyouready 2007-08-01 06:18AM | 0 recs
I think it is a very

poor move on his part.  He destroys any anti-war credentials.  But Clinton has the support of moderate hawks. He will not get them. And the neo-cons don't vote Democrat.  

Assuming it is not just political, that he believes this is even worse.  It betrays a willingness to engage American forces too easily.  It rejects everything he said in 2002.  It betrays a true lack of judgment.

It does explain the vote against Kerry-Feingold and lack of leadership on ending the war.  

by TomP 2007-08-01 06:22AM | 0 recs
Cognitive Dissonance

his messsage is so confusing.

by TarHeel 2007-08-01 06:31AM | 0 recs
Are you calling Obama insane? Why MyDD

allow you here baffles me. You are so full of hate. Are you saying now that Obama is afflicted with or characteristic of mental derangement?

by ameri 2007-08-01 06:13AM | 0 recs
You attribue and accuse

all who disagree with Barack Obama to "
hate" or "subliminal racism." You are wrong.

This is a bad policy.  It is dangerous.

by TomP 2007-08-01 06:24AM | 0 recs
Re: I actually agree with his statement

Definitely in the primaries.  Obama must be losing it to not just alienate a sizeable Democratic consituency which is decidedly anti-war, but also undermining his own dovish talk that he was anti-war while his opponents voted for the Iraq war.  

by georgep 2007-08-01 06:49AM | 0 recs
Re: Obama: Unilateral War With Pakistan

That is a naive statement. There is a reason that even Bush/Cheney did not unilaterally go into Pakistan. The chances of destabilizing the whole region are very high. Mind you it is a country with nuclear weapons. They might threaten to use it against their neighbors if any other country unilaterally attacks them. It is a question of their national pride. I can't beleive we are trading one stupid foreign policy for another.

by rakk12 2007-08-01 06:14AM | 0 recs
Re: Obama: Unilateral War With Pakistan

Also, don't forget the possibilities of them fighting a guerilla war against us from those mountains. Why do you think the Soviets retreated from Afghanistan in 80s?

by rakk12 2007-08-01 06:16AM | 0 recs
Re: Obama: Unilateral War With Pakistan

An unstable Pakistan with nukes is a direct threat to India who has nukes too. This policy is just stupid.

by DoIT 2007-08-01 06:34AM | 0 recs
Most Misleading Diary Title Ever!

"War with Pakistan"? Were did you get that?

Taking out Bin Laden should be the number one priority of any President. If we know where he is and Pakistan will not act then we sure as hell should.

Cruise missile and smart bombs do not equate to a war. Don't you remember Clinton did this in Afghanistan? Did anyone call that a war?

Please, you're spinning so hard your head is going to pop off.

by JoeCoaster 2007-08-01 06:20AM | 0 recs
Re: Most Misleading Diary Title Ever!

Did you read the article? They are discussing invasion of Pakistan.

by rakk12 2007-08-01 06:24AM | 0 recs
did you read Obama's speech.?

Even air strikes would be his second choice.

"As President, I would make the hundreds of millions of dollars in U.S. military aid to Pakistan conditional, and I would make our conditions clear: Pakistan must make substantial progress in closing down the training camps, evicting foreign fighters, and preventing the Taliban from using Pakistan as a staging area for attacks in Afghanistan. "

by JoeCoaster 2007-08-01 06:26AM | 0 recs
Here is is....

Advanced Excerpts of Obama's Speech

That AP article is waaaaay off base.

by JoeCoaster 2007-08-01 06:29AM | 0 recs
Re: Here is is....

That is much better than sending ground troops. Any idea why AP is reporting that he will be sending group troops for invasion?

by rakk12 2007-08-01 06:33AM | 0 recs
Re: did you read Obama's speech.?

Air strikes is fine. When you talk of sending our troops unauthorized into Pakistan without their permission you are risking another guerilla war. You don't take out troops from one guerilla war and start another one. You will destabilize more regions. We will be stuck there for a long time if we plan on our troops being there until Bin Laden is caught. Spying is okay, but ground troops is a really bad idea. They will be sitting ducks inviting ambush attacks just like in Iraq.

by rakk12 2007-08-01 06:30AM | 0 recs
Re: did you read Obama's speech.?


This isnt an "Iraq no fly zone" situation.

Any action in Pakistan by the US in a unilateral basis will be disastrous.  Threatening Unilateral action is NAIVE AND IRRESPONSIBLE.

Musharraff has VERY little political oxygen left in his country.  Pakistan has a lot of moderates, but it also has a lot of radicals. Destabilization of the Government (WHICH IS WHAT UNILATERAL ACTION WILL DO) is a horrible idea.

Whether you are talking about Smart bombs, an invasion, or air strikes, the fallout by any action without the consent of the Pakistani military will be disastrous. Suggesting anything contrary is a failed policy and will do NOTHING to bring the rest of the nations to have a favorable opinion on the US. Further alienation will just hurt the US on all fronts.

by sepulvedaj3 2007-08-01 12:33PM | 0 recs
Obama now appear to have the upper hand

from reading all these emotional rants and comments posted here this morning. The enemies are afraid so they vent.

by ameri 2007-08-01 06:21AM | 0 recs
Re: Obama now appear to have the upper hand

I'm not sure who you think the enemy is but I am an American citizen and I support the Constitution.

by DoIT 2007-08-01 06:58AM | 0 recs
Re: Obama now appear to have the upper hand

Sorry if people have a better understanding of world politics and the implications of a disastrous policy  than you do Ameri

by sepulvedaj3 2007-08-01 12:34PM | 0 recs
Re: Obama: Unilateral War With Pakistan

This Diary is hardly credible.  You twist Obama's words to mean something he did not say.  A vociferous Edwards supporter and a rabid HRC supporter gang up and bash away...

It frequently seems like you people have forgotten that we are all going to need to support a nominee starting next spring.  Please tone down your rhetoric.  Saying that we need to strike at Osama if possible is hardly a radical, hawkish position.  Pointing out that Bush took his eye off the ball in Afganistan and Pakistan is the coreect position substantively and politically.

by upper left 2007-08-01 06:21AM | 0 recs

I'm surpried this has not been put on dailykos yet.

They are always slow to react.

by areyouready 2007-08-01 06:25AM | 0 recs

Troll diary.

by faithfull 2007-08-01 06:31AM | 0 recs
Re: Wow

You're telling me that Obama calling for an invasion of Pakistan isn't news or worthy of discussion?

by Vox Populi 2007-08-01 06:34AM | 0 recs
Except he is'nt

and you know it ..

Obama's Speech

"I understand that President Musharraf has his own challenges. But let me make this clear. There are terrorists holed up in those mountains who murdered 3,000 Americans. They are plotting to strike again. It was a terrible mistake to fail to act when we had a chance to take out an al Qaeda leadership meeting in 2005. If we have actionable intelligence about high-value terrorist targets and President Musharraf won't act, we will."

by JoeCoaster 2007-08-01 06:54AM | 0 recs
shocking diary and comments

Wow people will argue about anything!

SO, let me get this straight: if we have good information Osama Bin Laden is hiding in Pakistan border AND Musharraf won't do anything (pretty much the scenario since September 11- it is highly likely this is the case) we do not I repeat do not think we should go in and get him?

Are we mad? Are you guys for real?

I realize we all support different candidates but this seems like something we could all agree on.

I am interpreting only the above quoted paragraph not the entire speech.

Being hawkish is when you go to war for no good reason and when you support a war for no good reason and you support increased military spending for no good reason.

When you have evidence that the person responsible for the deaths of thousands of Americans on September 11 is hiding somewhere and you go after him I don't think thats hawkish. I think thats common sense.

by lafinur 2007-08-01 06:39AM | 0 recs
Re: shocking diary and comments

You know I am actually not entirely sure he is wrong on the substance of it , I will actually be in favour of unilateral action in terms of airstrike , no ground troops if that is what he is saying . What I have a problem with is how you say you don't want " Bush - Cheney lite " last week and turn around in one week and make this kind of pronouncement which in his words can be regarded as "Bush - Cheney lite". He wanted to sound like Kucinich last week and now he wants to sound like Hillary this week. Thats what you get when you are trying to score political points and you are not sincere with your beliefs , his position last week was exactly Hillary's position and he is that type of politician , his track record doesn't show someone that will meet dictators without precondition.

by lori 2007-08-01 06:50AM | 0 recs
Re: shocking diary and comments

How is this Bush Cheney lite?

Bush Cheney have done nothing to find Osama! This is the opposite of Bush Cheney lite! Or are you conceding Bush Cheney has been trying to find Osama and their domestic opponents have not?

If anyone is not being politically sincere its you! You are drawing comparisons where they don't exist!

As I wrote, I think we can all agree that we should get Osama. That is very different from going to needless wars.

And saying you would be willing to meet with dictators does not mean that if you know a mass murderer of Americans is hiding in Pakistan with the tacit approval of Musharraf that you don't go after him.

I mean common sense Lori.

by lafinur 2007-08-01 07:01AM | 0 recs
Re: shocking diary and comments

Because Bush is debating doing this very thing right now.

by bookgrl 2007-08-01 07:20AM | 0 recs
Re: shocking diary and comments

You know even bush/cheney haven't recommended sending troops into pakistan , its almost even further than bush/cheney , if you don't see any inconsistency in saying last week you will be willing to meet Ahmadinajed someone who is involved in the mess in iraq and our troops over there without preconditions and a 360 turn saying you would go in there no with airstrikes but troops to attack those terrorist then thats on you and I will leave you to deal with it.

That is common sense right there , somehow I suspect if it was Hillary saying this you will have been falling over yourself calling her a neo con . I wonder if this is where the dem primary electorate is .

by lori 2007-08-01 07:23AM | 0 recs
Re: shocking diary and comments

So, we are basically saying that Bush has been too chicken to do just that?   Hey, we know Obama is holed up in the Pakistani mountains somewhere, we have known that for a long time.  It makes no sense to go there, all guns blazing, on "intelligence," that could very well be wrong, basically invading a sovereign nation against their will, air striking into the mountains, an operation blessed with limited chance for success unless we go all out and add ground troops to the search party.   What is being scenarioed here is pure folly.  Even the Bush administration has not signalled that they would go as far as widening the war to include Pakistan to smoke Osame-Bin-Ladin out of the mountains.    

by georgep 2007-08-01 06:57AM | 0 recs
Re: shocking diary and comments

I think you mean Osama, not "Obama." Let's try not to make that mistake again.

by DPW 2007-08-01 07:00AM | 0 recs
Re: shocking diary and comments

Ooops, George, what the heck was that?

by Shaun Appleby 2007-08-01 02:48PM | 0 recs
Worst. Diary. Ever.

And frankly those folks above spinning along with the diarist ought to be ashamed as well.

Obama did not call for invasion or unilateral war.  He promised to act on any actionable intelligence that we have.

That's the proper POV.  Unless you think that Kerry and Edwards were also calling for unilateral war when they criticized Bush for missing in Tora Boar and vowed not to make the same mistake.

Obama is saying the exact same thing.  But you folks know that.  You are distorting on purpose.

Shame on all of you.

by AdamSmithsHand 2007-08-01 06:39AM | 0 recs
Re: Worst. Diary. Ever.

Also, if you read the entire speech, Obama stresses many other dimensions to the strategy intended to diminish any unilateral military action (conditional aid, international alliances, and other political tactics). The diary and AP article can't be bothered with that part of the story, however.

by DPW 2007-08-01 06:46AM | 0 recs
Re: Worst. Diary. Ever.

Actionable intelligence is fine. Invasion is not fine. I think his people should contact AP and get the article corrected then. They sure as hell as using words like in invasion in the article when describing his position. If he does not advocate invasion, AP is misrepresenting Obama's position to millions of its readers and it is not fair to him.

by rakk12 2007-08-01 06:47AM | 0 recs
Not the first time AP has done this

And as always, we can count on the usual suspects to run with whatever characterization the AP places on his words.

For some, critical thinking is something that only happens when our own candidate is slimed.

by AdamSmithsHand 2007-08-01 07:14AM | 0 recs
Re: Update: Obama: Calls for Unilateral War Agains

From the article:

"The Illinois senator warned Pakistani President Gen. Pervez Musharraf that he must do more to shut down terrorist operations in his country and evict foreign fighters under an Obama presidency, or Pakistan will risk a U.S. troop invasion and losing hundreds of millions of dollars in U.S. military aid."

We are NOT going to invade Pakistan. I don't give a shit what your candidate says. It ain't going to happen. You warmongers need to take a frickin chill pill because some of us here actually believe in peace. There's been more than enough killing and dying already.

I've said for a while that Obama and Lieberman are like two peas in a pod. This only proves it.

Screw JoeBama

by DoIT 2007-08-01 06:43AM | 0 recs
Re: Update: Obama: Calls for Unilateral War Agains

You seriously think that if we know Osama Bin Laden is in Pakistan and Musharraf won't do anything we shouldn't go in and take him out?

I cannot believe people play politics with this issue. This is above parties my friends.

by lafinur 2007-08-01 06:45AM | 0 recs
Re: Update: Obama: Calls for Unilateral War Agains

I have no problem at all taking out Bin laden. I am ALL for it. I am not however in favor of invading Pakistan which is what Obama has threatened. A destabilized Pakistan is not only a threat because nukes might fall into the hands of terrorists, it is a threat to the security of the region.

India=Nukes and China=Nukes

This whole proposal is unwise. I criticize Obama all the time. But I think this time what he said himself is much worse than anything I might offer.

Just say NO to Obama's War!

by DoIT 2007-08-01 07:04AM | 0 recs
I thought we learned

never start pre-emptive wars with countries with large numbers of islamic fundamentalists -- particularly when it's not the country causing you problems.

by TarHeel 2007-08-01 06:48AM | 0 recs
if we started bombing Pakistan

with the presidents support he'd surely fall.

by TarHeel 2007-08-01 06:49AM | 0 recs
Re: Update: Obama: Calls for Unilateral War Agains

Whose words were those?

Is that a direct quote from Obama or the AP writers' characterization of what he said?  

Kind of an important detail, eh?

by AdamSmithsHand 2007-08-01 07:16AM | 0 recs
reaction from dailykos

I like Obama, but this is shaking my support.  He's been my favorite candidate for a while now, but after this, I dunno.  I might have to give Edwards another look...

A conservative is just a liberal who hasn't needed a second chance yet.

by Larry McAwful on Wed Aug 01, 2007 at 07:26:47 AM PDT

by areyouready 2007-08-01 06:44AM | 0 recs

I have to say I have lost a lot of respect for some of you. Playing politics with this issue is really reprehensible. It shows an inability to draw the line at core values.

I don't know what kind of American thinks we should not go after Osama Bin Laden.

Perhaps not the kind I want to sit around sharing my views with...

Netroots? more like Netkooks.

by lafinur 2007-08-01 06:49AM | 0 recs
covert operations

not telegraphing our machismo to a president who's pro-US was educated in the state and who's brother lives in the US.

When he goes - and US in your face rhetoric doesn't help him stay in power...  than Nukes are in al qaeda's control.

by TarHeel 2007-08-01 06:51AM | 0 recs
Re: covert operations

You don't have any clue what you are talking about Tarheel.

by lafinur 2007-08-01 06:54AM | 0 recs
Re: sad

Obama doesn't mention Osama specifically.  He refers to terrorists in general.  Yes, there are a lot of them in Pakistan.  There are also a lot of them in Sauid Arabia.  And in Syria.  And in Iran.  And in Indonesia.  And in the Philippines.  And on and on and on.  Should we bomb/invade all those nations, too?

Take your rally-the-flag, sunshine patriotism and shove it up your self-righteous ass.

by Vox Populi 2007-08-01 06:54AM | 0 recs
Re: sad


by lafinur 2007-08-01 07:02AM | 0 recs
Obama was very specific ...

"I understand that President Musharraf has his own challenges. But let me make this clear. There are terrorists holed up in those mountains who murdered 3,000 Americans. They are plotting to strike again. It was a terrible mistake to fail to act when we had a chance to take out an al Qaeda leadership meeting in 2005. If we have actionable intelligence about high-value terrorist targets and President Musharraf won't act, we will."

But don't let reality get in your way. You are obviously on a mission from god.

by JoeCoaster 2007-08-01 07:05AM | 0 recs
Re: sad

Maybe you should blame Obama your candidate for trying to be all things to all people . If his campaign wasn't all over the map maybe people will have a better idea who he is . Weren't you defending him last week when he said he will meet these dictators without precondition , now you are defending him with this position . I wonder how you reconcile that.

by lori 2007-08-01 06:58AM | 0 recs
Re: sad

Let's see the reaction from Pakistan on this before going on to shoot the messenger.   Obama made these statements for a reason.  It is absolutely legitimate to discuss them.   He obviously wants to appeal to a general election audience, knowing full well that talking tough with yet another country in the region, threatening unilateral action, would not play well with the anti-war contingent in the Democratic party.   Now it can't even be discussed on a progressive blog?   Strange.

by georgep 2007-08-01 07:03AM | 0 recs
Re: sad

This is the dumbest spin. As a responsible president, you don't talk about what you might or might not do to such a sensitive and hypothetical question. You don't rule anything in or out.

To call a strike within Pakistan and to challenge their president in a political speech is just bizarre beyond imagination.

by areyouready 2007-08-01 07:05AM | 0 recs
Re: sad

he didn't call a strike and you know it.

by leewesley 2007-08-01 07:58AM | 0 recs
Re: sad

Its not everybody, but it does seem like that when you read these reactions. Some just leap before looking, other leap just cause leaping is fun...

by jazzyjay 2007-08-01 08:25AM | 0 recs
Re: Update: Obama: Calls

I know the Edwards and Hillary partisans thinks this is a major blunder for Obama, but i beg to differ.

The Americans people believe we should go after Osama Bill Laden wherever he's hidding and this include Pakistan...Go ahead and poll this question:

Do you believe the president of the U.S should strike terrorist camps inside Pakistan even if Pakistan president is against it?

Im sure the Obama people took a poll on this and it probably polled very well..I dont think anyone will challenge Obama on this.

If you have intelligence that Osama is in a specific location inside Pakistan, you HAVE to strike and i just cant even imagine musharraf saying NO...

Osama killed 3000 Americans and the Public wants him dead or alive, so i just dont see how is this speech a blunder.

Democrats can not win by being "anti-war"...The war against the Nazies was a good war..The war against terrorists is a good war...The war in Iraq was a dumb war because Saddam didnt have any weapon of mass destruction + the fact we were already engage in Afghanistan.

by JaeHood 2007-08-01 07:03AM | 0 recs
Re: Update: Obama: Calls

While you are at it, go ahead and poll DEMOCRATS about the very same question.   You will see an overwhelming majority want no part of us attacking Pakistan because they don't comply with our requests.   So, while it may help him with Republicans, it will hurt with DEMOCRATS.   The primaries come before the general, so, generally speaking, Obama is shooting himself in the foot with this for the nomination.  

by georgep 2007-08-01 07:06AM | 0 recs

Obama is not talking about "war on pakistan"...He's talking about "striking terrorist camps in Pakistan".

Those are 2 different things and i know you may try to twist his words and do the psychological stuff by distorting his intention, but as long as Obama clearly states that "if there's terrorist camps inside Pakistan, i will strike" ,then i just cant see how he losses.

Obama his kind of loose with his wording so he must be careful to make the public understand that terrorist should not be allow to breath anywhere in the world.

You will not see anyone challenge him on that because we all agree that if you have strong intelligence about terrorist training inside Pakistan, it'll be hard to ignore that..And yes, even if Musharaf says NO...Those terrorist are probably training in thosse preparing for their next 9-11.

Again,the public dont want to see another 9-11 and they will accept any type of strikes that could deter those terrorist.

I think 80% of the public agree with Obama that if there's terrorist training in Pakistan, then we must strike them before they strike us at home.

by JaeHood 2007-08-01 07:18AM | 0 recs

I think 80% of the public agree with Obama that if there's terrorist training in Pakistan, then we must strike them before they strike us at home.

Is that you or George Bush talking?

The problem is that people like you think that attacking camps in Pakistan wouldn't lead to war with Pakistan.  It would.  The government would collapse after the public revolts because US troops invaded their nation.  Nukes in the hands of terrorists.  That's what Obama is calling for with these words.

by Vox Populi 2007-08-01 07:23AM | 0 recs

Wow, what a misreading of public sentiment.

So, if we have intelligence that Al-Quaida is present and training in Pakistan, Saudi-Arabia and Syria (in fact, that is happening right now) we go and go after Al-Quaida via surgical strikes or by committing ground troops?   That is far from the DEMOCRATIC point of view, as you appear to claim here.

by georgep 2007-08-01 08:09AM | 0 recs
you are right

the netroots is usually wrong on this.

I'm sure Buchanan and Scarborough and Russert will be trumpeting a US presidential candidate shoving his balls at the president of a country that is a US ally....as poor an ally as Pakistan is.. IT can get much worse if the government is overthrown.

by TarHeel 2007-08-01 07:07AM | 0 recs
Re: Update: Obama: Calls

Going after Osama is good. However, sending troops to Pakistan without their consent is not smart. It is too risky for our troops. Even Bush/Cheney do not advocate that position. To be fair, in my opinion, Obama is not going to follow through on these statements if he is elected. He is just saying these to appear tough on national security after last weeks incident. Unfortunately, it won't help him one bit in the general election because Republicans are going to use his statements from last week against him.

He could have explained his statements from the debate as not being explicit enough to inlcude preconditions. However, his subsequent statements of explictly stating that he will have no preconditions are going to hurt him in the general.

by rakk12 2007-08-01 07:13AM | 0 recs
Re: Update: Obama: Calls for Unilateral

Obama is the "Change" candidate. You got that right!

by DoIT 2007-08-01 07:09AM | 0 recs
Re: Update: Obama: Calls for Unilateral War Agains

First of all, the speech hasn't been given yet. This is all speculation as far as I'm concerned. Secondly, I feel like everyone is jumping to conclusions a little bit. The possible "invasion" of Iran (which would probably amount to a couple of hundred soldiers sent to the mountains between Afghanistan and Pakistan where US military operatives are already working) would only come after numerous efforts (economic and diplomatic in nature) as used to convince our all, Pakistan, that it's in our mutual interests.

Also, any notion that Obama is 'flip-flopping' from his debate statement is completely unfounded. In the speech, Obama will also promise to give "a speech at a major Islamic forum in the first 100 days of his administration." He clearly wants to INCREASE diplomacy and dialogue with hostile nations which is consistent with his previous statements. Rather than presenting inconsistencies , I think this speech will reaffirm the fact that Obama is a proponent of a new, smarter direction in foreign policy- not the kind advocated by the old guard in DC.

Check out this list of advisors- (http://abcnews.go.com/Politics/Story?id= 3434573&page=3)

"The Obama campaign says those assisting with the speech constituted a mix of a new generation of national security and foreign policy experts such as Samantha Power, a professor of global leadership and public policy at Harvard's John F. Kennedy School of Government and Pulitzer Prize-winning author of "A Problem From Hell: America and the Age of Genocide"; Susan Rice, member of the National Security Council for President Clinton; Greg Craig, former Clinton administration undersecretary of state and director of policy planning; and more experienced old hands, such as President Clinton's National Security Adviser Tony Lake, former Clinton and Bush counterterrorism czar Richard Clarke and retired Maj. Gen. General Jonathan Gration."

Read this fact sheet http://blogs.suntimes.com/sweet/2007/08/ sweet_blog_special_in_terroris.html before jumping to unfounded conclusions.

by ctnewbie18 2007-08-01 07:18AM | 0 recs
Re: Update: Obama: Calls for Unilateral War Agains

I don't care if Obama is flip flopping. I don't care if this is a continuation of his policy stance or new direction for him. I don't care if he is just scratching his balls and shooting the shit.

What I do care about is that Obama is advocating MORE WAR!


Give Peace a Chance

by DoIT 2007-08-01 08:26AM | 0 recs
Re: Update: Obama: Calls for Unilateral War Agains

It's find that you oppose the position, but understand that it is not 'MORE WAR.'

I encourage you to calm down, wake up tomorrow refreshed, grab of cup of coffee and read the speech  with an open mind. It's actually the most progressive approach to foreign policy I've seen.

by ctnewbie18 2007-08-01 09:28AM | 0 recs
Rasmussen daily tracking

Rasmussen daily tracking is out. I believe this is Obama's lowest number for a long time. Don't put too much stock in daily tracking though. We'll see what's going to happen for the entire week.

Hillary 42
Obama 21
Edwards 13

by areyouready 2007-08-01 07:19AM | 0 recs
Speaking now

Obama is speaking now, MSNBC is covering it live.  You can also read the actual text on his website.

http://www.barackobama.com/2007/08/01/th e_war_we_need_to_win.php

How about we have a reality based discussion?

by Obama08 2007-08-01 07:20AM | 0 recs
Thank you,

everyone is jumping on "assumptions", hell, I never did that one, without reading the speech.

by icebergslim 2007-08-01 07:44AM | 0 recs
Re: Thank you,

I just finished reading it. It's pretty revolutionary stuff. I especially like parts 3 and 4 of his argument. If Obama continues being this bold in the face of conventional wisdom and the hack that is the MSM, then I may jump off the sidelines and volunteer for the campaign!

by ctnewbie18 2007-08-01 07:52AM | 0 recs
You need to read the whole speech

and stop spinning the shit out of this.  Geekesque has the speech and the full break down.

http://www.dailykos.com/story/2007/8/1/1 05141/5711

by icebergslim 2007-08-01 07:43AM | 0 recs
Unfortunately this isn't surprising at all

if you read his take on foreign policy:

http://www.foreignaffairs.org/20070701fa essay86401-p0/barack-obama/renewing-amer ican-leadership.html

"As commander in chief, I would also use our armed forces wisely. When we send our men and women into harm's way, I will clearly define the mission, seek out the advice of our military commanders, objectively evaluate intelligence, and ensure that our troops have the resources and the support they need. I will not hesitate to use force, unilaterally if necessary, to protect the American people or our vital interests whenever we are attacked or imminently threatened."

Jerome a' Paris seems to be clairvoyant here:

I'm sorry - Obama's foreign policy creeps me out
http://www.dailykos.com/story/2007/5/31/ 8023/76395

"The US needs a bigger, better army - to use it

His whole text is about the use of military tools. He criticizes Bush for focusing too much on military solutions, but that's all he discusses. How to make the US military bigger, stronger, more effective, and how to use it all around the world."

by okamichan13 2007-08-01 07:43AM | 0 recs
Hey Vox!

Jerome just plagiarized you on the main page!

Are you going to let him get away with that?

by JoeCoaster 2007-08-01 07:58AM | 0 recs
All comments...

... on this thread that are challenging Obama on this are simply endorsements of George W. Bush's complete failure in going after Bin Laden.

by Vermonter 2007-08-01 08:12AM | 0 recs
The title of this diary...

... is completely inaccurate.

by Vermonter 2007-08-01 08:19AM | 0 recs

Thank you. The title insults the intelligence of mydd readers.

Regardless of one's position on Obama's proposed stance re Al Qaeda and other Islamic terrorist organizations, it's clear that Obama has not done anything in the same zip code as "calling for a unilateral war against Pakistan."

And regardless of one's position on the 2008 primary (mine is Edwards > Obama >>>>> Hillary, for anyone who's dying to know), no good can come from (intentionally?) smearing and distorting Obama's positions.    

Vox should change the title promptly and apologize.

by TomGilpin 2007-08-01 08:30AM | 0 recs
Pickler "interpretation"

of the speach is what did it.

I agree the actual speach is open to interpretation..

"on the right battlefield"  could mean air strikes, invasion who knows.

Pickler did inflame it though by her article ,, although curiously it's the same speach she covered.

by TarHeel 2007-08-01 08:36AM | 0 recs

...channeling Nedra Pickler? Classic.

But, you won't change the completely bogus title, even after admitting is's completely bogus?

And inspired by a raving hack like Pickler, a writer who has consistently trafficked in bogus frames regarding Democrats?

by Vermonter 2007-08-01 08:40AM | 0 recs
Re: Wow...

I didn't write this diary.

by TarHeel 2007-08-01 09:04AM | 0 recs

I got this confused with your diary when just looking at comment responses...

by Vermonter 2007-08-01 09:17AM | 0 recs
Re: Pickler "interpretation"

I understand your point, but is it too much to ask Vox (and other diarists) to read and respond to the speech itself?

See markjay's comment on Jerome's post for one example of attacking Obama's position without relying on smears and outright mistruths.  

by TomGilpin 2007-08-01 08:44AM | 0 recs
I'll change my title

you should see Drudge's copyediting...

by TarHeel 2007-08-01 08:57AM | 0 recs
Re: Yep

I'm neither apologizing nor changing the title of my diary.  I wrote what my interpretation of the speech was.  It was bellicose.  It was irresponsible.  I wonder what Wes Clark or Al Gore think about it.

by Vox Populi 2007-08-01 08:51AM | 0 recs
Re: Yep

Obama has proposed:

IF we have "actionable intelligence about high-value terrorist targets" who helped execute the 9/11 attacks and are currently planning future attacks against the US;

and IF those individuals happen to be in Pakistan;

then the US should aggressively attempt to kill them.

From this, you interpret that Obama is "calling for a unilateral war against Pakistan"? You're either mistaken or acting in bad faith.

Edwards won't win by tearing Obama down.  

by TomGilpin 2007-08-01 09:01AM | 0 recs
Re: Yep

I'm not Edwards and I don't work for his campaign.  I'm a private citizen very concerned with Obama's tough rhetoric.  I've had 8 years of Bush and am done with it.

If the leader of Pakistan doesn't give his blessing, and thousands of American troops invade the tribal areas, what do you think would happen?  Honest question.  Do you think the Pakistani people would embrace us?

It would lead to war.  How can you not see this?  And it would be unilateral because nobody would support us.  How can you not see that?

by Vox Populi 2007-08-01 09:03AM | 0 recs
Re: Yep

They don't want to see it. They blindly support their leader, willing to start WW3 should he only say the word. These folks are dangerous.

by DoIT 2007-08-01 09:15AM | 0 recs
Re: Yep

If you really think that Pakistan would go to war to protect al qaida, what makes you think they're really our allies?

by davey jones 2007-08-01 09:18AM | 0 recs
Re: Yep

1) It wouldn't be to protect Al Quaeda, it would be to defend their sovereignty and territory from a us occupation force, and

2) The government would likely be overthrown and the nation plunged into an Iraq-style civil war.

Do you and Obama want to create another Iraq?  Why does Obama wish to strengthen Iran?

by Vox Populi 2007-08-01 09:21AM | 0 recs
Re: Yep

Obama isn't talking about occupying the country, he's talking about killing al qaida. How can anyone legitimately criticize bush for not getting bin laden if you aren't willing to do what it takes to correct that error?  Obama isn't talking about invading countries at random as Bush did in 2002 with the support of those in Congress who wanted to appear "hawkish" (whatever that means), he's talking about, finally, going after the terrorists that attacked us to make us safer.

by davey jones 2007-08-01 09:39AM | 0 recs
Re: Yep

it's not musharraf it's what happens if he's overthrown?

I would think chaos is a strong possibility....

India sits right next store also has nukes and is an enemy of pakistan....

India pakistan makes iraq look like fun

by TarHeel 2007-08-01 09:26AM | 0 recs
Re: Yep

Conflating (1) Obama's expressed positions with (2) "thousands of troops invad[ing] the tribal areas" emphasizes to me that you are not analyzing this issue in good faith.

Obama didn't call for anything of the sort.

I can understand those who disagree with taking a public stance to this effect. Certainly managing our relationship with Musharrif is a subtle, difficult task requiring deft and ample diplomacy.

But it is a very different thing to accuse Obama of "calling for unilateral war against Pakistan."

by TomGilpin 2007-08-01 09:24AM | 0 recs
"thousands of American troops ...

...invade the tribal areas"?

You're confusing the "Middle East in Flames" X-box game you're playing with reality. Open a window. Go for a walk.

Taking out Osama, given "actionable intelligence", would be an air force or special forces operation.

by JoeCoaster 2007-08-01 09:25AM | 0 recs
Re: Tom, Wait until you start hearing Reactions


Please don't make it sound like this is some blunder made by Vox or some conspiracy by a Edward supporter.

This diary will be your least concern once this announcement is heard, read, digested by Democratic voters in the next 72-96 hours.

Obama made a very strong,Loud, Controversial, and  decisive announcement today. His campaign handlers obviously wanted all the attention for this major policy speech. This is not an accident. This was a calculated decision (risk)by Obama & his team. ( and just like anything else in politics, its a gamble you make)

They are probably hoping that this speech will sit well especially with Democratic Primary voters & might gain him precious points to catch Hillary Clinton.

Unfortunately, I think there will be a Loud Negative Reaction from all sectors of our party once this announcement spreads & digested by Democratic voters.

This diary is the least of Obama's potential problem.

You should wait & see how strong the reaction will be from others. One mistake like this can be crucial.

by fightingLadyinblue 2007-08-01 09:58AM | 0 recs
Re: Tom, Wait until you start hearing Reactions

You didn't address my point - that Vox's characterization of Obama's position is blatantly inaccurate. I'm not interested in your amateurish political diagnoses.

It appears that you are a Hillary Clinton supporter. Perhaps you should refocus your efforts on electing Ms. Inevitable rather than tearing down the other candidates.  

by TomGilpin 2007-08-01 10:30AM | 0 recs
From the Politico...

[via TPM's ElectionCentral]

Obama's speech: No mention of "war on terror"

Barack Obama was among those raising his hands in a recent debate to indicate that he believes there is a "war on terror," but his speech today -- and read the whole thing -- marks a really sharp departure from policies past, and seems to challenge Hillary either to come along or be pushed toward the White House.

One note: The phrase "war on terror" appears nowhere in the speech.

The closest he comes: "America is at war with terrorists who killed on our soil. We are not at war with Islam."

Also absent from the speech is any reference to "Islamic terrorism," "Islamism," or "Islamofacism" -- the buzzwords of those who see a global conflict between the West and a specifically Muslim insurgency.

UPDATE: Another relevant passage: "Just because the President misrepresents our enemies does not mean we do not have them. The terrorists are at war with us. The threat is from violent extremists who are a small minority of the world's 1.3 billion Muslims, but the threat is real. They distort Islam. They kill man, woman and child; Christian and Hindu, Jew and Muslim. They seek to create a repressive caliphate. To defeat this enemy, we must understand who we are fighting against, and what we are fighting for."

by Vermonter 2007-08-01 09:21AM | 0 recs
Re: Update: Obama: Calls for Unilateral War Agains

Barack Obama:Soldier of Fortune!

If you send troops to Pakistan without their approval, isn't that called invasion? What am I missing here?

by bsavage 2007-08-01 01:07PM | 0 recs
Obama: Calls for Unilateral War Against Pakistan
If this happens, look for a coup against Musharraf and a Taliban like govt. taking over Pakistan...with nukes.
by Ajsmom 2007-08-01 01:18PM | 0 recs

are going to blow the SHIT out of the Middle East...OMG...


How was that?  Hey, I am washing my clothes, packing, packing my dogs (going to the petsitter), packing my pinot, and will be on the Metra tomorrow for YKos.  I will get y'all's fav's photos, and of course, photos "that should not be published", anyway, holla....

by icebergslim 2007-08-01 02:12PM | 0 recs
What were you thinking Obama?

The funny thing is, the only people that support an attack or invasion of Pakistan without the explicit consent of the government of Pakistan is neocons, you know the guys who advise Vice President Dick Cheney.

I don't know what Barack Obama was thinking. I support going after terrorist in Pakistan, but you need the support of the Pakistani government and military. Pakistan is fragile and going in there forcefully could result in further destabilization of the government and a possible coup, which could put nuclear weapons in the hands of extremist. So far, I have not read a single blog post from Democrat or Republican who support such a policy.

by RJGajadhar 2007-08-01 03:26PM | 0 recs
Re: Update: Obama: Calls for Unilateral War Agains

Lets forget for a moment whether he called for unilateral war or some sort of controlled "surgical" action.  The message he sent - and meant to send - was "I'm a hawk.  I'll bomb folks if I really need to."  This announcement was unarguably a political action generated in response to some perceived gaffe  he (thinks he) made in the debate re: diplomacy.  Even if this is his genuine policy position , the decision to disclose it now makes this a political move.

And whatever merits (or lack thereof) of the policy position, the political strategy is terribly flawed.  The direction he took with the "diplomacy first" track fits right inside his overall change message, and was a fantastic way to differentiate himself. He thinks he is now balancing against that position with this recent announcement, and he is wrong.  He is simply re-enforcing the "our only way out is war" concept and moving the narrative of the issue onto republican territory.  This move smacks of somebody in Chicago pushing the the mythical "center" because they saw some blip in a poll somewhere.  The move is what folks around here would refer to as "DLCism", or what Republicans (just you wait!) will call "Flip-Flopping."

Bottom line from this lefty who just can't decide between Obama and Edwards: For a guy who is big on rhetoric and pretty weak thus far on policy positions, this is not the one tangible thing to break through with as what the "politics of hope" is actually referring to.


by rallydemocrat 2007-08-01 03:41PM | 0 recs
Chest Thumping

has consequences. This is irresponsible behavior from Obama. It is definitely something I might expect from a Neocon, not from a Democrat. Already, this threat has brought about a response from Pakistan. They see this as a dangerous provocation at a time when they are actually cracking down on terrorists. Obama followers will quickly point out that Obama did not say he was going to invade Pakistan. But what Obama did do is actually threaten to do just that. He has a naive and irresponsible foreign policy position.

by DoIT 2007-08-01 04:04PM | 0 recs
What is Clinton and Edwards Thinking?

I guess, they ALL Are on the same page...

READ THIS THREAD, with backup print evidence that both AGREE with Obama.  Oh, BTW, on the Situation Room, they had a radio clip of Clinton stating the similar SAME THING.

No wonder, neither have stated anything.  Guess they are scouring youtube and print media, but it is already OUT THERE.

http://firstread.msnbc.msn.com/archive/2 007/08/01/300839.aspx
http://thestar.com.my/news/story.asp?fil e=/2007/8/2/worldupdates/2007-08-02T0231 02Z_01_NOOTR_RTRMDNC_0_-287732-2&sec =worldupdates
http://www.dailykos.com/story/2007/8/1/1 83324/7123?detail=f

Read the links, but more importantly, what they SAID.  Again, you will not hear them disagreeing with Obama, when they are on the SAME PAGE.

by icebergslim 2007-08-01 04:23PM | 0 recs
Re: What is Clinton and Edwards Thinking?

I don't agree with any of them.

by DoIT 2007-08-01 05:25PM | 0 recs
Re: Update: Obama: Calls for Unilateral War Agains
Apparently Obama was a top student at harvard law school so i'd imagine he learns fast.
He's had the first 6 months of the campaign to learn how anything he says could be turned against him by the spin masters.
So hes gotta learn to not say anything that could give his political enemies ammunition.
His speech still could've been great without the one sentence that talked about taking out terrorist targets in Pakistan.
by joachim 2007-08-01 05:50PM | 0 recs
Re: Update: Obama: Calls for Unilateral War Agains

You "leftwing" Democrats are pathetic!  Why are you all eternally surprised when your fav candidate - it doesn't matter which one - turns out to be just another warmonger?  They are inevitably ALL tied up with the War Machine - how could it be otherwise when that Machine saturates virtually every Congressional district with military contracts?  People talk about the "Israeli Lobby", but they are just a bump on the War Machine log. This, BTW, is the source of the supposed 'Israel Lobbys'' power, that the state of Israel is merely a wholly owned subsidiarity of a global War Machine that has literally run amok, completing the utter destruction of the U.S. constitution, R.I.P.  How do you like the arms deal killing just made with the 'Saudi Lobby' and its Persian Gulf satrapies?

So let's see, the current 'debate' between Billary - yes, all you future Obama/Edwards losers will  be pulling the lever for Bill, the 3rd Term Vagina Version, guess blowjobs in the Oval Office won't be a 'crime' now - and Obama is over whether to nuke or not...what a pathetic state of affairs!

And a poster above actually had the temerity - or more accurately the BLINDING STUPIDITY - to mention John Kerry in connection with the supposedly 'brilliant' tactic of "running against the left" - because you know how "right wing" the U.S. public is, and how gullible it can be in the face of such pandering.  John Freaking KERRY, the Ultimate Born Loser! A guy that should not be in politics - not even within a tiny insignificant fringe sect - simply due to his utter political incompetence.  I mean, here is a guy that manages to be boring, tedious, leaden and clumsy all in the same move!

When are you people ever going to pull your heads out of your derrières and realize that anybody that is permitted to have a shot at constitutional office is never going to do anything for US?  Oh, is that a 'rude' expression?  Stop being such obviously WILLFUL political ignoramuses, and I'll stop being so rude.  Because to watch people make such political fools of themselves - over and over again - makes me want to vomit.

The American 'democracy', such as it was, is OVER, FINISHED.  It was confirmed the moment it became clear that two obvious criminals such as Bush/Cheney would never be removed from office - quite the contrary, they are being encouraged ever onward every day by the whole Beltway political system!  

It is OVER folks, time to move on to a new strategy.

by RealLefty 2007-08-03 01:07AM | 0 recs


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