Taking on Obama within the Democratic Party
by Jerome Armstrong, Thu Jun 24, 2010 at 11:28:57 AM EDT
Obama's gambling here with Afghanistan now. It might only a matter of time until Obama is facing a challenger for his 2012 nomination in the Democratic Party.
As Ackerman blogged, with Obama saying that his going to Petraeus is a change in personnel, but not policy, that's party true, but also party not the case.
Today Obama clarified what July 2011 means — somewhat. It means what Gen. Petraeus, his new commander, told the Senate he supports: not a “race for the exits,” but a “conditions-based,” open-ended transition. If that still sounds unclear, it’s because the policy itself is unclear. But by placing Petraeus at the helm, it means that 2012 will probably look more like right now, in terms of troop levels and U.S. troops fighting...
This will get clarified shortly. McCain has already stated that he'll use the Peatrus hearings to clarify that 2011 is not a withdrawal date:
The concern that we have is, and the issue that will be raised in General Petraeus' confirmation hearings is, exactly what is meant by ‘withdrawal in the middle of 2011,’ whether that is ‘etched in stone’ as the President's spokesperson … stated or whether it will be conditions based. ... The withdrawal of U.S. troops must be based on conditions at the time, not on an arbitrary date.”
The "etched in stone" remark was Gibbs last year, multiple times stating that 2011 was the departure date.
I found the Rolling Stone article blah, but with this nugget of truth, regarding to fallacy of nation building through the military:
"The entire COIN strategy is a fraud perpetuated on the American people," says Douglas Macgregor, a retired colonel and leading critic of counterinsurgency who attended West Point with McChrystal. "The idea that we are going to spend a trillion dollars to reshape the culture of the Islamic world is utter nonsense."
I am not convinced that Obama will be challenged from within the Democratic Party, but, his near complete adoption of the Bush military strategy in Afghanistan and Iraq, and missing his promised withdrawal date in Iraq (done) and Afghanistan (July 2011), certainly provide a huge populist opening against him for prolonging these open-ended wars.
Its also deadly for Obama's brand. An oppositional candidate would easily attack the above as a complete betrayal of what Obama promised (though there are loyalists that connive a myth otherwise). I'd surmise that his political team would advise Obama to move to the get out the wars asap if a serious challenger emerged. Which is good reason for a challenge to emerge.
But whom is the current Democratic Senator that resembles Eugene McCarthy or Robert Kennedy? None that I have heard. Come July 2011, would one emerge? By 2012, will there even a pat Buchanan like voice to run against Obama?
Too early to know; but if Ackerman is right about 2012, and McCain & Peatrus get their way with staying in Afghanistan, the oppositional groundwork over this important issue is done.
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