McCain vs. Reality

I think that we have a great opportunity to look at two candidates and see where they stand (Obama’s OpEd, McCain’s Rebuttal). Neither candidate is perfect.

Senator Barack Obama did speak out forcefully against the surge. He said that he didn’t think that it would control the violence. What he didn’t know was that there was a huge push in the Sunni community to decrease violence and to push out Al Qaeda. Without the cooperation of the Sunni tibial leaders, the violence would not have been quelled with a modest increase in troop levels (the surge).

Senator John McCain never acknowledges this fact. The other thing that John McCain leaves out of his discussion of the Surge is the purpose of the Surge. The purpose was to create an environment where the Iraqi government could reverse de-Bathification, create a fair oil-sharing law, and have national reconciliation.

It is important to mention that we are paying for some militia forces in Iraq to tow the line. It is unclear what will happen when those payments stop. They have to stop some day. McCain does not mention this at all. It is as if it doesn’t matter or even factor into the current “peaceful” situation.

So, Senator McCain is correct in saying that our troops have performed brilliantly. He was wrong about everything else. I don’t think that he is misleading because he doesn’t know what it happening. I think that he is misleading because he is wedded to a strategy to stay the course in Iraq.

Obama has a strategy that follows the will of the American people and makes us safer. Any strategy that focuses attention on getting the Taliban and Osama Bin Laden is a strategy that I can support.

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Errington C. Thompson, MD

Dr. Thompson is a surgeon, scholar, full-time sports fan and part-time political activist. He is active in a number of community projects and initiatives. Through medicine, he strives to improve the physical health of all he treats.


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