Senator Barack Obama (D-Rezko) is watching his campaign fall apart. Obama is desperate.
The Obama remedy: Funds for paid media including radio, television and internet are allocated and spent lavishly; new hires are made by the campaign, misinformation and lies are the order of the day; and provocative talk escalating world tensions are yet another campaign ploy of the day.
Hillary Clinton a few weeks ago called Obama’s position on meeting rogue leaders, without preconditions, naive and irresponsible. Hillary Clinton was correct at the time. Now with Obama increasingly desperate as his poll numbers do not improve, or plunge, he has become reckless. His Bush-like recklessness threatens us all.
What exactly happened and what is Obama lying about?
The Obama campaign worked for weeks on a foreign policy speech. The Obama campaign publicized the speech as a major event because they were trying to get away from the previous Obama blunder regarding meetings, without preconditions, with rogue world leaders. The Obama campaign proudly and prominently placed their big foreign policy speech on the Obama website.
Obama’s speech went off like a bomb. An O bomb a.
Lynn Sweet of the Chicago Sun-Times not only published the speech, she also published the accompanying “Fact Sheet” distributed by the Obama campaign. The Fact Sheet and speech transcript were labeled repeatedly as “Paid for by Obama for America”. This is a central fact in the whole Obama created controversy. Obama’s remarks in that bomb of a speech (which appeared to call for an invasion or at least attack inside Pakistan) were not off-the-cuff remarks. Obama’s speech was worked on and massaged for weeks before he delivered it. The Obama campaign not only provided transcripts of the carefully crafted speech but it also distributed a “Fact Sheet” to supplement the speech. In the transcript of the speech, the Fact Sheet about the speech and the actually delivery of the speech the ugly paragraph about Pakistan was included.
Here is what the Sun-Times and most media outlets published immediately after Obama’s bomb of a speech:
As commander-in-chief, White House hopeful Sen. Barack Obama (D-Ill.) would sponsor a U.S. strike in Pakistan to attack terrorists, sending a tough message to Pakistan President Pervez Musharraf that if he does not act an Obama administration would.
Obama made the threat in outlining his most extensive, specific program yet to combat terrorism and to restore the U.S. image in Muslim nations in a speech to be delivered Wednesday morning in Washington. In an indirect reference to chief rival Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton (D-N.Y.) over directly negotiating with leaders of rogue states–Clinton said last week she did not want to hand a “propaganda” opportunity to these leaders– Obama, according to a fact sheet distributed in advance of the speech, is ” not afraid that he’d lose a public relations battle against a dictator.”
The Sun-Times, then published the Obama campaign supplied transcript of the speech and the Fact Sheet, which both included the controversial paragraph about disregarding President Musharraf and attacking Pakistan. First the transcript portion:
“I understand that President Musharraf has his own challenges,” Senator Obama said in his prepared remarks. “But let me make this clear. There are terrorists holed up in those mountains who murdered 3,000 Americans. They are plotting to strike again. It was a terrible mistake to fail to act when we had a chance to take out an al Qaeda leadership meeting in 2005. If we have actionable intelligence about high-value terrorist targets and President Musharraf won?t act, we will.”
And Pakistan needs more than F-16s to combat extremism. As the Pakistani government increases investment in secular education to counter radical madrasas, my Administration will increase America’s commitment. We must help Pakistan invest in the provinces along the Afghan border, so that the extremists’ program of hate is met with one of hope. And we must not turn a blind eye to elections that are neither free nor fair — our goal is not simply an ally in Pakistan, it is a democratic ally.
Here is the Fact Sheet portion provided to media by the Obama campaign:
OBAMA’S PLAN TO DEFEAT TERRORISM WORLDWIDE
• Demand More from Pakistan. As was made clear in the recent National Intelligence Estimate, al Qaeda has successfully made the tribal areas of northwestern Pakistan a base to launch attacks into Afghanistan and beyond. As president, Barack
Obama would condition U.S. military aid to Pakistan on their making progress to close down the training camps, evict foreign fighters, and prevent the Taliban from using Pakistan as a base to strike inside of Afghanistan. In addition, if the United
States has actionable intelligence about high value terrorist targets and Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf will not act on it, an Obama Administration will. Obama also will increase aid to Pakistan for development and secular education to counter extremists.
Paid for by Obama for America
The clear implication by this crown of creation speech by the Obama campaign is that (a) Obama would attack inside Pakistan if need be and rub President Musharraf’s nose in this action; and (b) an implicit threat to remove Musharraf and redesign Pakistan’s government.
President Musharraf clearly read the Obama speech. Musharraf is a dictator. Musharraf seized power undemocratically in Pakistan via a bloodless coup in 1999. Musharraf saw the threat aimed at him directly, and he reacted.
The New York Times:
Pakistan’s president, Gen. Pervez Musharraf, was on the brink of declaring a state of emergency in his increasingly volatile country but backed away after a gathering storm of media, political and diplomatic pressure, Pakistani officials acknowledged on Thursday.
Pakistani police officers removed a laborer who was killed by a detonated bomb at a scrap shop in Peshawar.
Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice telephoned General Musharraf about 2 a.m. Thursday in Pakistan, the State Department spokesman, Sean McCormack, said. Bush administration officials refused to discuss in public what was said, but one Pakistani official said that Ms. Rice exhorted General Musharraf not to declare emergency rule. The conversation lasted about 15 minutes.
“She thought it was an opportune moment to talk about a couple of things,” Mr. McCormack said without elaborating.
By the time of the conversation, Pakistan’s minister of state for information and broadcasting, Tariq Azim Khan, had said that General Musharraf was not ruling out declaring an emergency, which would give him sweeping powers to restrict freedom of movement and assembly, to suspend Parliament and to curtail the activities of the courts.
Such a step, officials in Washington fear, would further inflame the region and open the Bush administration to additional criticism from democracy advocates who say it has already been too willing to turn a blind eye toward General Musharraf’s failure to restore civilian rule.
In Pakistan, opponents of emergency rule, including some inside the government, warned that it would push the country into a deeper crisis, as the opposition parties, the judiciary, lawyers and civil society would react strongly against it.
“I fear the whole system will collapse and the country will plunge into a period of turmoil,” said one minister, warning of moves to impose emergency rule.
In his remarks on Wednesday, Mr. Khan cited both “external and internal threats” to the government, including the worsening security situation in the country’s tribal areas, where Al Qaeda and many Taliban militants are based.
No doubt President/General Musharraf was playing with dangerous internal Pakistani politics.
Other Pakistani officials suggested privately, however, that it was less the security situation driving the plan for an emergency than General Musharraf’s own political concerns as he tried to have himself re-elected to another term.
Earlier this week, General Musharraf told political supporters in Karachi that he would stand for re-election by the national and provincial assemblies as early as Sept. 15. But the public mood has soured on the general since he tried to dismiss the country’s chief justice five months ago. That move set off nationwide protests and was later overturned by the Supreme Court.
Opposition parties now seem poised to use the court to bring constitutional challenges against General Musharraf’s continued rule, particularly his decision to hold dual positions as president and army chief of staff.
Amid such political uncertainty, some of General Musharraf’s supporters had urged him to take greater control in the form of extraordinary powers.
As early as last week, close aides to the general and intelligence officials started hinting at the possibility of a “drastic step” — a euphemism for emergency rule — which has been instituted six or so times in Pakistan’s 60 years of independence. Some suggested that General Musharraf was increasingly finding himself in a dead end.
“The president is left with no other option than to clamp down emergency or a martial law to try to extend his stay in power,” an intelligence official said on condition of anonymity early this week. “It is only a matter of days.”
On Wednesday, General Musharraf canceled a long-planned trip to Kabul to serve as a co-chair of a three-day assembly of tribal elders and political leaders with Afghanistan’s president, Hamid Karzai. The news fueled speculation that an emergency decree was imminent.
He instead stayed home to conduct a high-level meeting of his close military and political aides on Thursday morning. Later in the day, Muhammad Ali Durrani, the federal minister of information, issued a categorical denial that an emergency was being imposed.
Obama recklessly provided Musharraf with a fig-leaf reason to impose the State of Emergency:
Citing recent comments from Barack Obama about possible U.S. military action inside Pakistan, the government of embattled President Gen. Pervez Musharraf warned yesterday it may impose a state of emergency due to “external and internal threats.”
Tariq Azim, minister of state for information, said statements from Obama and others raising the possibility of U.S. military action against al Qaeda in Pakistan “has started alarm bells ringing and has upset the Pakistani public.”
Obama last week touched off a firestorm when he gave a high-profile speech threatening: “If we have actionable intelligence about high-value terrorist targets and President Musharraf won’t act, we will.”
It’s a very irresponsible statement, that’s all I can say,” Pakistan’s Foreign Minister Khusheed Kasuri told AP Television News. “As the election campaign in America is heating up we would not like American candidates to fight their elections and contest elections at our expense.”
Obama’s threat to attack the territory of a Muslim ally without the consent of its government also could have broader ramifications for his standing in international Islamic public opinion.
The worldly mixed-race presidential candidate, who spent part of his early childhood in the Muslim nation of Indonesia, has a life story that has excited interest among a global Muslim population that has been disillusioned by the Bush administration’s policies in Iraq. Obama’s middle name of Hussein, a negative to Americans familiar only with the deposed Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein, offers comfort to Muslims who recognize the name as that of a revered ancient imam associated with the cause of the oppressed. [snip]
But the threat against Pakistan is likely to damage views of Obama in global Islamic opinion, though perhaps not irrevocably, said Vali Nasr, a senior fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations who studies political Islam and is author of “The Shia Revival.”
“There is the Obama promise. There is the Obama message. And now there are the Obama words,” Nasr said. “They are not consistent with each other.”
Nasr said global Islamic opinion is particularly sensitive to treatment of Pakistan because its tensions with India make it the second major spot in the world in which Muslims are in conflict with a nation of a foreign religion. The other is the Israeli-Arab conflict.
“Ultimately, the tenor of Obama’s argument is that he is going treat Pakistan as an enemy country,” Nasr said.
In a counterterrorism speech Wednesday, Obama said that as president he would order a strike against Al Qaeda leaders in tribal areas of Pakistan if President Pervez Musharraf does not eradicate their havens in the mountainous region on the border with Afghanistan.
“There are terrorists holed up in those mountains who murdered 3,000 Americans. They are plotting to strike again,” Obama said. “If we have actionable intelligence about high-value terrorist targets and President Musharraf will not act, we will.” [snip]
The Bush administration has tread carefully in its dealings with Musharraf, an important ally in the struggle against Al Qaeda and the Taliban. The White House has pressed Musharraf to take more aggressive steps against terrorist sanctuaries in the country, but Bush has been sensitive to Musharraf’s precarious hold on power.
Obama’s comment added to public anger in Pakistan. And a Republican presidential candidate, Rep. Tom Tancredo of Colorado, further inflamed feelings by suggesting that the U.S. deter a nuclear terrorist attack by issuing a threat to retaliate by bombing the two holiest Islamic sites, Mecca and Medina.
In Karachi, Pakistan’s largest city, about 150 people chanted slogans against the U.S., Obama and Tancredo at a demonstration organized by hard-line religious parties, according to The Associated Press.
In Miran Shah, a major town in the lawless region that borders Afghanistan, about 1,000 tribesmen condemned recent Pakistani military operations in the area and vowed to repel any U.S. attack, AP reported.
A State Department spokesman issued a rebuke to presidential candidates for complicating efforts to gain international cooperation in counterterrorism efforts.
“Those who wish to hold office can speak for themselves, and whoever … comes into office in 2009 will then be in a position to talk about what they intend or plan to do,” said deputy spokesman Tom Casey.
In Chicago, several Pakistani-Americans who had donated to Obama said they would no longer support him. Dr. Murtaza Arain, an Oak Brook surgeon who has attended two Obama fundraisers and donated money to the campaign, said he planned to switch his support to Sen. Hillary Clinton (D-N.Y.).
“I don’t want him to be my president if he doesn’t understand all the ground realities in Pakistan,” said Arain, pointing to Pakistan’s efforts to root out terrorists. “To say you’ll act if they don’t is suspecting an ally and putting that ally down.”
Obama confronted by reality and most of the other Democratic candidates running for president decided to lie and defame and distort.
The biggest point of contention in the debate last night came stemmed from an argument Obama made recently — the idea that he would take action against Al-Qaeda in Pakistan, if that country’s leadership won’t act. Several candidates criticized Obama on that point… and the fiercest exchange was over what Obama said in his recent speech.
Dodd: “If you’re making a mistake today, you ought to stand up and say so. It was a mistake in my view to suggest somehow that going in unilaterally here, into Pakistan, was somehow in our interest.” Obama replied: “I did not say that we would immediately go in unilaterally. What I said was that we have to work with Musharraf”
So, who is telling the truth? Judge for yourself. Here is what Obama said last week: “It was a terrible mistake to fail to act when we had a chance to take out an al Qaeda leadership meeting in 2005. If we have actionable intelligence about high-value terrorist targets and President Musharraf will not act, we will.”
Dodd was correct about what Obama said… Obama did not say he would work with Musharraf.
More to come in Part II of Obama’s State of Emergency.