Sunday, November 23, 2008
Barack Obama's Great Betrayal of his Anti-war supporters?
Barack Obama's signature issue in the primaries was his "good judgment" to oppose the Iraq war. He invoked this more than any other qualification in his early battles with Hillary Clinton. She may have experience, he'd charge, but she lacked the wisdom to oppose the war. Indeed, the whole Democratic establishment was somehow corrupt or out of touch for not opposing the war, according to the Obamaphiles. So now Barack Obama is going to appoint Hillary Clinton to be the chief architect of his foreign policy. Moreover, he picked Joe Biden to be his running mate and "partner" in the White House explicitly because of his foreign policy experience and judgment. But wait: Joe Biden, too, supported the war. Meanwhile, at Defense, it looks like he will keep George W. Bush's man, Robert Gates.......surely keeping Bush's SecDef is not exactly what the anti-war Dems had in mind as "change we can believe in." Heck, Joe Lieberman's sitting pretty and he endorsed McCain. It will be interesting to see how long Obama's charisma can paper over reality.
opines neo-con commentator Jonah Goldberg in The NRO.
Is Barack Obama in the process of betraying his anti-war supporters?
Today's Sunday Telegraph , in a piece entitled "Obama accused of selling out on Iraq by picking hawks to run his foreign policy team" quotes Chris Bowers of the OpenLeft.com blog who complains:
"That is, over all, a centre-right foreign policy team. I feel incredibly frustrated. Progressives are being entirely left out of Obama's major appointments so far."
Meanwhile, Markos Moulitsas, founder of the anti-war Daily Kos site, warns that Democrats risk sounding "tone deaf" to the views of "the American electorate that voted in overwhelming numbers for change from the discredited Bush policies."
I've put a question mark on the heading of this blog post, because of course we're still to see what Obama's foreign policy will be like in practice.
But as far as his early appointments are concerned, it's hardly a promising start, is it?
(many thanks to Stuart Reid for alerting me to the Goldberg piece).