Patterico's Pontifications

8/27/2008

Obama 2004: “We have to Finish the Job”

Filed under: 2008 Election — DRJ @ 11:51 pm



[Guest post by DRJ]

Jake Tapper reports that ABC aired tonight a previously unreleased Nightline interview of Barack Obama after his impressive speech at the 2004 Democratic convention, and Obama had this to say about Iraq:

“Asked Koppel: “Well, how does electing John Kerry resolve that dilemma for America?”

Obama said, “If you look at what has happened over the last several months, I think there is a convergence. Basically, the Bush administration has moved in the direction of its critics in trying to internationalize the reconstruction process. So, I am not sure that, on paper, the differences between the Bush administration and a Kerry administration would be significant.”

Obama continued, “All of us assume that when we make that commitment, that we have to finish the job, we owe it not only to the troops who sacrificed their lives, but also the Iraqi people. The question is, who can execute. Who has the credibility to gather its allies together and to make sure that they are willing to expand their political capital, domestically, to invest into Iraq, to send their own troops into Iraq, to pressure countries, like Iran, to deal with issues of proliferation?

“And I think that there is a strong impression that the Bush administration has squandered its will on the international stage, and that John Kerry would come in with a broader vision and the possibility of bringing people onboard in a way that is necessary for our long-term success,” Obama said.

Koppel said, “Presidents often talk about the importance of their personal relations with other leaders, but essentially that is a lot of hooey. You know, nations do things because of national interest.”

“Absolutely,” agreed Obama.”

You need to read the link to get the full context of Obama’s point but I think this is representative and, needless to say, ironic.

— DRJ

52 Responses to “Obama 2004: “We have to Finish the Job””

  1. Note also the imagery of Obama’s last excerpted paragraph in which he describes President Bush as the “driver who drove the bus into the ditch.”

    DRJ (7568a2)

  2. Obama’s right! Driving the bus into the ditch could kill thousands trapped under there!

    Bush Crashed / People Bashed!

    Apogee (366e8b)

  3. I was just wondering, ‘who do the Clinton’s got at ABC’? HEHEHE

    liontooth (0edfdb)

  4. I guess the war was winnable then, but not now.

    Icy Truth (64f9d0)

  5. So, in 2002 in his famous Dumb War speech he said that the war would REQUIRE an indefinite commitment. In 2004 he repeated that assertion (because even he understands that it really is the only reasonable alternative) and somehow by 2008 politics got in the way.

    I kept hearing how prescient and proof of his good judgment he was with that Dumb War speech but no one else has really bothered to look at what he said!

    See what he said at the link and you can decide how that famous judgment adds up.
    David

    LifeTrek (d258cb)

  6. Racists, one and all.

    JD (75f5c3)

  7. Baracky’s words cease to have any meaning once they leave his mouth.

    JD (75f5c3)

  8. Obama will sue you all!

    PCD (5c49b0)

  9. I don’t see any real difference between what he said then and what he is saying now. Maybe I am not partisan enough.

    love2008 (1b037c)

  10. I don’t see any real difference between what he said then and what he is saying now

    SHOCKA!

    JD (75f5c3)

  11. Dear Love: Reading = Comprehension.

    Dmac (874677)

  12. #10 & #11
    I said real difference.
    Reading = Comprehension.

    love2008 (1b037c)

  13. All of us assume that when we make that commitment, that we have to finish the job, we owe it not only to the troops who sacrificed their lives, but also the Iraqi people.

    Not much to argue with on that.

    Then, however, his position morphed to surrender, and surrender now during the primaries. He vowed to withdraw as soon as possible even if the Generals on the ground recommended against same. He placed his artificial 16 month timeframe on it. Then, it has again morphed to a responsible withdrawal based on the conditions, or whatever it is today. It will change again tonight.

    JD (75f5c3)

  14. There is a big difference between what you say as a party supporter who is trying to tow the party line, and what you say when you are the one running for office. I am sure you agree that much. And besides, the war was not as unpopular then as it has become recently. We are talking about four years difference. Who knew then, the war was going to last till now. Not to mention that just like all humans I know, we tend to shift our position a bit to agree with changes.

    love2008 (0c8c2c)

  15. “Tow the line” should be “Toe the line”. Yeah I know. I denounce myself.

    love2008 (0c8c2c)

  16. Some more Obama quotes on the war:

    Here is a convenient timeline of his changing positions (in his own words):
    October 2, 2002, Chicago Wearing a war is not an option pin, he thrilled the anti-war rally by disparaging the Iraq war as a “dumb war. A war based not on reason but on passion, not on principle, but on politics.” 

    The Audacity of Hope   When America was obtaining clear victories on the ground in Iraq, Obama wrote in The Audacity of Hope,  “I began to suspect that I might have been wrong [about the war]”

    March 28, 2003, on CNN, Obama claimed that he, “Absolutely want to make sure that the troops have sufficient support to be able to win.” He was invested in winning at that point.

    Democratic National Convention July 2004 His only mention of the war was, “There are patriots who opposed the war in Iraq and patriots who supported it.” The day after his speech, Senator Obama told reporters that the United States had an “absolute obligation ” to remain in Iraq long enough to make it a success. He stated that failure of the Iraqi state would be a disaster and would be a betrayal of the promise that we made to the Iraqi people, and it would be hugely destabilizing from a national security perspective”.  (This history is beginning to get more attention — see below).

    Same month  He was no longer certain how he would have voted. “I’m not privy to Senate intelligence reports. What would I have done? I don’t know.” (The New York Times on July 26.)

    2004 election  To keep in line with his party’s candidates Kerry and Edwards, who had voted for the Iraq War, he told The New York Times, “I’m always careful to say that I was not in the Senate, so perhaps the reason I thought [the war] was such a bad idea was that I didn’t have the benefit of U.S. intelligence,”

    After the election  Obama regained his certainty on the Charlie Rose Show. When Rose asked him if he would have voted against the Iraq War resolution had he been in Congress, Obama’s answer was a simple, “Yes.” 

    July 2004  Obama told the Chicago Tribune “[t] here’s not that much difference between my position [on the war] and George Bush’s position at this stage.” 

    As for the troop withdrawal,
    November 2005 speech    He called for a gradual withdrawal of forces. “Notice that I say ‘reduce,’ and not ‘fully withdraw'”

    December 2005   He told the Chicago Tribune, “It is arguable that the best politics going into ’06 would be a clear, succinct message: ‘Let’s bring our troops home…But whether that’s the best policy right now, I don’t feel comfortable saying it is.”

    January 2007 (just before announcing his run for the Presidency), for example, he outlined a plan to begin “redeployment of U.S. forces no later than May 1, 2007″ and “remove all combat brigades from Iraq by March 31, 2008.”

    Today, he vows to “immediately begin to remove our troops from Iraq.”

    The AP reported it this way in July 2007:
    “Presidential hopeful Barack Obama said Thursday the United States cannot use its military to solve humanitarian problems and that preventing a potential genocide in Iraq isn’t a good enough reason to keep U.S. forces there.” .
    Obama and obligations

    The following is a statement startling in its implications, and gives us insight into Barack Obama’s reliability.  In 2004, according to the Boston Globe, he stated:

    …that the United States had an “absolute obligation ” to remain in Iraq long enough to make it a success. He stated that failure of the Iraqi state would be a disaster and would be a betrayal of the promise that we made to the Iraqi people, and it would be hugely destabilizing from a national security perspective.

    <http://www.americanthinker.com/2008/03/senator_obamas_foreign_policy.html

    ROA (0155b4)

  17. There is a big difference between what you say as a party supporter who is trying to tow the party line, and what you say when you are the one running for office.

    So you just accept that your candidate is going to lie and pander about his position in the primaries?

    JD (75f5c3)

  18. #17
    And John McCain has not done any pandering in his primaries, JD?

    love2008 (0c8c2c)

  19. “And I think that there is a strong impression that the Bush administration has squandered its will on the international stage…”

    Leftists shibboleths never die.

    Cicero (3acd31)

  20. “And besides, the war was not as unpopular then as it has become recently.”

    So we now have a supporter admitting that The Messiah’s basic governing priciple will be guided by public opinion polls and sticking his forefinger out the window to gauge the wind direction each day. “Change we can believe in!”

    Dmac (874677)


  21. “Change we can believe in!”

    Any issue. Any time.

    JD (75f5c3)

  22. Here, Learn something.

    “When the facts change, I change my mind. What do you do, sir?”
    John Maynard Keynes

    JAR (ab000b)

  23. So as things improve in Iraq, his view of it gets worse?

    Fascinating. Thank Christ the economy isn’t mind-blowing, or he’d calling for a young priest and an old priest…

    Scott Jacobs (2899a7)

  24. I wonder if JAR has ever had an original thought. Every time it drops by, all it does is drop links to somebody else’s thoughts, and usually misrepresents the contents of said link in a gleenwaldian manner.

    JD (75f5c3)

  25. He reminds me of someone…

    :)

    Scott Jacobs (2899a7)

  26. Pure JARbage

    Icy Truth (7d05ae)

  27. #15 – love2008

    “Tow the line” should be “Toe the line”. Yeah I know. I denounce myself.

    — Oh, I don’t know. I kinda liked it the other way; although, it does make one wonder: to where will the party line be towed?

    If Slick Willie towed it to Vegas, and NanaFreezeFace dragged it on to Frisco . . . will two of the most liberal US Senators ever now finally outsource that line to Moscow?

    Icy Truth (7d05ae)

  28. She does have a point though… it IS “Toe the line”…

    And give her credit… She’s at least being a semi-good sport about this all…

    Scott Jacobs (2899a7)

  29. So we now have a supporter admitting that The Messiah’s basic governing priciple will be guided by public opinion polls and sticking his forefinger out the window to gauge the wind direction each day. “Change we can believe in!”

    Of course. Any other approach would lead to change we might not believe in.

    Xrlq (b71926)

  30. Didn’t know flexibility was a flaw. Oh well.

    love2008 (0c8c2c)

  31. Didn’t know flexibility was a flaw. Oh well.

    There is flexability, and then there is having no guiding principle of your own…

    Sen Obama is most certainly not the former…

    Scott Jacobs (2899a7)

  32. BAGHDAD (Reuters)The United States asked Iraq for permission to maintain a troop presence there to 2015, but U.S. and Iraqi negotiators agreed to limit their authorization to 2011, Iraqi President Jalal Talabani said.
    “It was a U.S. proposal for the date which is 2015, and an Iraqi one which is 2010, then we agreed to make it 2011. Iraq has the right, if necessary, to extend the presence of these troops,” Talabani said in an interview with al-Hurra television, a transcript of which was posted on his party’s website on Wednesday.”

    I thought this was supposed to be about what Iraqi freedom.

    You can talk about political gamesmanship one way or the other, and that’s what the last link discussed, but you and McDuck aren’t even doing that.
    “I wonder if JAR has ever had an original thought.” To you an original thought is being unable to site any evidence: “Why should I read anything? I know what I believe!”
    I’m sorry but for me evidence precedes belief.
    You can even call that my ideology, if you want.
    I won’t mind.

    JAR (ab000b)

  33. #31
    Scotty, be fair. Obama has maintained a position about the Iraq. He was against it from the get-go and has continued to fine-tune his position on it as things have continued to take its unexpected turns. At least no one can argue that. No one is perfect. Give him a little credit for that.

    love2008 (0c8c2c)

  34. JARgon –

    To you an original thought is being unable to site any evidence

    — To you an original thought is righting (sic) the wrong word.

    Icy Truth (7d05ae)

  35. I would now like to give Obama a little credit: he has been wrong about Iraq from the get-go.

    Icy Truth (7d05ae)

  36. There are readers who attempt to learn;
    and there are readers who just turn the pages.

    Another Drew (0e4f52)

  37. I gives you books and books and youse just look at the covers.

    madmax333 (0c6cfc)

  38. #35
    I would now like to give Obama a little credit.
    Thank you thank you Icy. The rest is not important.

    love2008 (0c8c2c)

  39. Thank you thank you Icy.

    I would quote the rest of the post but, you know . . . not important.

    Icy Truth (7d05ae)

  40. “Didn’t know flexibility was a flaw. Oh well.”

    Flexibility is one thing – being a human weathervane is quite another. Just one more example of the cult of The Messiah – “ask not what he does, nor question his motives, for they are pure at heart, and He knows best…always.”

    PT Barnum said it best: “a sucker born every minute” – JAR JAR Binks being the latest example of the sheeple being led to the slaughter.

    Dmac (874677)

  41. Dmac – It is not as though Teh One does not take positions. It is that his position is subject to change from the moment the words pass over his lips.

    JD (75f5c3)

  42. And it is racist to point out the multiple variations of his ever-changing opinions. Public funding of campaigns. Individual gun rights. Taxes. The war. Capital gains. Same sex marriage. The list is practically endless.

    JD (75f5c3)

  43. JAR 8/28/2008 @ 9:56 am:

    I thought this was supposed to be about what Iraqi freedom.

    It is and that’s why the US “asked permission” and negotiated an agreed timeframe with Iraq. That’s what free nations do.

    DRJ (7568a2)

  44. “It is and that’s why the US “asked permission” and negotiated an agreed timeframe with Iraq”

    The Iraqis want us to leave. If it’s their choice why the need to bargain? At least make a logical argument for not wanting to abide by their wishes.

    JAR (ab000b)

  45. JAR 9:56am I’m sorry but for me evidence precedes belief. – Should read: Belief = Evidence.

    As for the ‘reading’ swipe, I’m reminded of this.

    Apogee (366e8b)

  46. JAR is an excellent commenter. His comments are routinely read in the US Senate, and he worked for a whiteshoe lawfirm. He also has amassed many ‘helpful’ votes in his Amazon reviews of NEW YORK TIMES BEST SELLERS!

    Good day SIR

    Rick Ellersburg (4cdfb7)

  47. Here in my JAR, I feel safest of all –

    At least make a logical argument for not wanting to abide by their wishes.

    — We ARE abiding by their wishes. Where have you provided a scintilla of proof that we are not? Where has a single Iraqi leader gone to the U.N. and said, “Hey! Can you help us kick these guys out already?” Why haven’t they done that, dishrag?

    Icy Truth (7d05ae)

  48. I’m amused at the Obama haters who try to use his own quotes against him… because the only real way they can do it is to take his quotes, eliminate the sentences (and even words) around it, and then say… “look what he said.” If you disagree with his policies fine (look on his website if you don’t know what they are). But don’t be a little punk and misquote him to try to take him down because you are afraid of him.

    Peter (eb403d)

  49. American people are real idiots. The leaders know it. That’s why they come up with some fancy “phrase words” like “condition on the ground” etc. Look how average people are using the same phrase to define the condition on troop withdrawal. But, they don’t understand given America’s military power you can change the battle field condition on the ground over night. But, you couldn’t change the politics of middle east for decades. To change the politics of middle east you need wisdom and vision.

    Omar Sharif (666047)

  50. Does anyone know how to remove a fucknut from your grill?

    Icy Truth (f54eb3)

  51. I’m beginning to feel sorry for Patterico…the idiocy here just never lets up. JAR is completely correct in his observations: The Iraqi’s want the U.S. out of their country in 16 months. A timetable that Obama has consistently supported and that Al Maliki confirmed was in line with Iraq’s wishes.

    Peter (e70d1c)

  52. Well Petorquil… since that’s been debunked several times over, maybe you should “clown around” elsewhere. Don’t forget your socks.

    Stashiu3 (460dc1)


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