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Ready For Primetime?

Hillary Clinton chose not to come right out and say that Barack Obama is unprepared to be commander-in-chief. She may have been wary of the comeback (what makes her more fit?). Or she may have been concerned about becoming a soundbite in a John McCain general election campaign ad. Nevertheless, there is a good argument that he really is not ready. His “men without ammunition” tale is a good example, as explained here.

Likewise, I am still puzzling over this comment at last night’s debate, which he made after the compulsory salute to the brave fighting men of the next primary state:

And, you know, we honor their service. But this is a tactical victory imposed upon a huge strategic blunder. And I think that, when we’re having a debate with John McCain, it is going to be much easier for the candidate who was opposed to the concept of invading Iraq in the first place to have a debate about the wisdom of that decision . . . than having to argue about the tactics subsequent to the decision.

What does this mean exactly? I understand that he was opposed to the Iraq War, but isn’t he going to have to “argue” about what we do now? And why would it be easier for someone who fundamentally believes all hope is lost to devise a plan to salvage the best outcome possible? In a general election race, of course, he will need to explain why Anthony Cordesman is wrong (or his conclusion that there is a “very real chance that Iraq will emerge as a secure and stable state” is irrelevant) and why we should not conclude that Obama is one of the “Democrats so intent on denying George Bush retroactive vindication for a war they insist is his that they would deny their own country a now-achievable victory.” Good questions all, which Clinton will not ask. But McCain certainly will.



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