Voting For Commander In Chief

Fred Kagan at The Weekly Standard breaks it down

It would be hard to design a better test for the job of commander in chief than the real-life test senators John McCain and Barack Obama have undergone in the last two years. As the situation in Iraq deteriorated during 2006 and the war reached its most critical moment, both senators served on national security committees: McCain on Armed Services, Obama on Foreign Relations. From those positions, with access to classified situation reports as well as the public testimony and private advice of those who knew the situation in Iraq best, each man reached an understanding of the facts on the ground and the interests at stake. And each proposed a strategy. It was as close as a presidential candidate could get to showing how he would respond to a national security crisis without already being in the White House.

Both men’s proposals are a matter of public record, available on the Internet. McCain set forth his in a speech at the American Enterprise Institute on January 5, 2007 (at an event marking the release of AEI’s “Choosing Victory,” which I wrote, outlining a strategy like the one Bush later ordered). Obama presented his in the “Iraq War De-Escalation Act of 2007 ” (S. 433), which he introduced in the Senate on January 30. We also know the strategy the president chose–the surge of forces he announced on January 10, very similar to what McCain described–and the outcome it has brought.

So, we had Victory vs. Retreat and Defeat.

For any voter trying to choose between the two candidates for commander in chief, there is no better test than this: When American strategy in a critical theater was up for grabs, John McCain proposed a highly unpopular and risky path, which he accurately predicted could lead to success. Barack Obama proposed a popular and politically safe route that would have led to an unnecessary and debilitating American defeat at the hands of al Qaeda.

The two men brought different backgrounds to the test, of course. In January 2007, McCain had been a senator for 20 years and had served in the military for 23 years. Obama had been a senator for 2 years and before that was a state legislator, lawyer, and community organizer. But neither presidential candidates nor the commander in chief gets to choose the tests that history brings. Once in office, the one elected must perform.

To paraphrase Confederate Yankee, Obama has not only never even led a Cub Scouts troop, his isn’t ready to lead one, much less the U.S. Military.

Meanwhile, Frank RIch goes gaga for the Missiah (yes, I mean to spell it that way)

On one side stands Mr. Obama’s resolutely cheerful embrace of the future. His vision is inseparable from his identity, both as a rookie with a slim Washington résumé and as a black American whose triumph was regarded as improbable by voters of all races only months ago. On the other is John McCain’s promise of a wise warrior’s vigilant conservation of the past. His vision, too, is inseparable from his identity — as a government lifer who has spent his entire career in service, whether in the Navy or Washington.

Yes, his cheerful embrace of how to lose a war. Sounds great! Hope! Change! Giving in to Islamic fundamentalists! Cheerful!

Somehow, in Rich’s world, being in government for a long time is now bad. Poor Teddy and Bobby B. They must be bad people, now.

So, what is Obama ready to lead?

Crossed at Right Wing News and McCain Blogs

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11 Responses to “Voting For Commander In Chief”

  1. […] at Right Wing News and Pirate’s Cove This entry was posted on Sunday, June 8th, 2008 at 8:56 am and is filed under Decision 2008. You […]

  2. Silke says:

    Obama has not only never even led a Cub Scouts troop, his isn’t ready to lead one, much less the U.S. Military.

    In my opinion, having served in the military and lead soldiers myself I do think Obama is ready to lead the U.S. Military.

  3. Why do you think he is ready to lead?

  4. Silke says:

    I think he is intelligent, a gifted communicator, and he is composed under pressure.

  5. darthcrUSAderworldtour2007 says:

    Silke’s ‘leadership’ definition in reference to CIC Zebra Obamessiah is one for the ages matey! And I thought Dr. Strangelove B-52 Is Ok was … unique?

  6. drstrangeloveb52isok says:

    I AM unique Death Star II star leader Darth!
    …. x Damascus x ….. !!!
    … x Tehran x ….. !!!
    … x NY Slimes x ….. !!!!!
    LOVE the H2O & those bodily fluids Teach!

  7. forest hunter says:

    Your leader awaits you Silke.

    If he were anymore articulate I’d have to return to school for some general translations of um, uh and eh. Must be code words for *clueless but you can have it for FREE, if you buy now!*

    This sorry excuse for a man blames it on lack of sleep, well I guess we’ll have to alter the meaning of sleep from here out too. But hey, you go ahead and worship this America hating freak as long as you want, don’t let the ill effects of such an articulate candidate spoil your high. OOPS did I say articulate? Can we say that about He Who’s Middle Name Must Not Be Mentioned?

  8. forest hunter says:

    Here are a few examples of the intelligent, gifted communicator, composed under pressure, clown, that couldn’t lead you across the squad bay to the head w/o getting lost……..brought to you by none other than the Man Who’s Middle Name Must Not Be Mentioned.

  9. I think he is intelligent, a gifted communicator, and he is composed under pressure.

    But how does that make him qualified?

  10. manbearpig says:

    I think he is intelligent, a gifted communicator, and he is composed under pressure.

    That decription could describe any “motivational speaker”. I want someone who has ideas about this country’s direction for the future… How do we keep America safe? How do we make it affordable for someone to make a living? What is your plan for keeping Social Security solvent without raising my taxes to 75%? How would you propose people can get affordable health care without subjecting it to government beauacracy?

    Also, what has he done in the senate to take the lead? What legislation has he proposed? What has he spearheaded? At least McCain has campaign finance (as misguided as it is). He took a lead. Obama has done NOTHING going back to his time in the Illinois State Senate (well except for maybe helping out Tony Rezko).

    As Teach said, show me some qualifications. If I was running a McDonalds, I wouldn’t hire this guy to run my store, so why should I want him to run the entire country?

  11. I sure wouldn’t hire the guy as a basic sales rep. A bit of BS is necessary for the job, but, he is way overboard.

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