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February 04, 2008

Remembering Clinton And Obama On Syria Bombing

Seymour Hersh has written a new article about Israel's bombing of Syria last September. It's inconclusive. No one—Israeli, Syrian, or American—has a convincing explanation of what happened. But certainly there's no strong evidence Syria truly was, as Israel claimed, building a nuclear reactor. Moreover, the hazy evidence, long links of supposition, and hints of other agendas are strongly reminiscent of the Iraq/WMD crap.

With that in mind, it's interesting to remember what Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama were saying about the bombing soon afterward, at the September 27 MSNBC debate. Here's Clinton:

CLINTON: [W]e don't have as much information as we wish we did. But what we think we know is that with North Korean help, both financial and technical and material, the Syrians apparently were putting together, and perhaps over some period of years, a nuclear facility, and the Israelis took it out. I strongly support that...there was evidence of a North Korea freighter coming in with supplies. There was intelligence and other kinds of verification.

And here's Obama:

OBAMA: Now, we don't know exactly what happened with respect to Syria. We've gotten general reports, but we don't know all the specifics. We got general reports in the run-up to the Iraq war that proved erroneous, and a lot of people voted for that war as a consequence.

—Jonathan Schwarz

Posted at February 4, 2008 01:48 PM

OK, I'm gonna give this one to Obama.

Posted by: SteveB at February 4, 2008 05:04 PM

Here is what Obama said to the AIPC.

“And when Israel is attacked, we must stand up for Israel's legitimate right to defend itself. Last summer, Hezbollah attacked Israel. By using Lebanon as an outpost for terrorism, and innocent people as shields, Hezbollah has also engulfed that entire nation in violence and conflict, and threatened the fledgling movement for democracy there. That's why we have to press for enforcement of U.N. Security Council Resolution 1701, which demands the cessation of arms shipments to Hezbollah, a resolution which Syria and Iran continue to disregard. Their support and shipment of weapons to Hezbollah and Hamas, which threatens the peace and security in the region, must end.”

It really is too bad that Israel’s right to defend itself translates into murdering thousands of Palestinians while cutting off food, electricity, medicine etc. thus killing even more Palestinians. But that doesn’t seem to bother Obama very much at all. I also note that Obama is telling us that Iran and Syria threaten peace and security in the region with no mention of the U.S. role in purposefully destabilizing the entire Middle East. Yeah, sure, Obama is one great guy. Honest as the day is long that’s Obama.

Posted by: Barnacle Bill at February 4, 2008 05:28 PM

Answer-wise, Obama seems to be genetically predisposed to not believe manufactured bogus sh*t.

Possibly because the mainstream powers haven't processed his club card yet. As soon as he gets read into the program, I suspect he'll change, but there is an off-chance that as an edge candidate he may not be as beholden to AIPAC as the passel of white candidates.

Posted by: Ted at February 4, 2008 05:41 PM

Barnacle Bill:
Gee, I hope that wasn't aimed at me. It shouldn't be, unless you can explain how "OK, I'm gonna give this one to Obama" translates into "Obama is one great guy."

I'd translate it more as, "in this particular debate, Obama's response did less to reinforce false right-wing talking points than his opponent's did."

Posted by: SteveB at February 4, 2008 07:02 PM

I'd translate it more as, "in this particular debate, Obama's response did less to reinforce false right-wing talking points than his opponent's did."

Nuthin makes me more grateful, in a "change" candidate of the "opposition." Makes me plumb GLAD this hyar Obama feller's runnin', yessirreebob...

Posted by: konopelli/wgg at February 4, 2008 08:32 PM

No SteveB that was not aimed at you and I cannot even begin to fathom why you would think so. It was my response to Jonathan's post nothing more nothing less. It would take something much more concrete than a single statement to cause me support Obama who I view as a company man all the way.

Posted by: Barnacle Bill at February 4, 2008 08:41 PM

The Canard Enchaîné in France talked about the bombing as a warning towards the Syrian Government.
Apparently, to discourage any retaliation from Syria in case of an Israeli attack on Iran.

Posted by: littlehorn at February 4, 2008 08:49 PM

Referring to comments, not the article:

We get it. They both suck. So, whaddayagonnado, voteferNader?

(I did. And I voted for Obama today too. I'm sorry, my holier-than-thou quotient isn't up to voting for people who have dropped out. I mean, the difference between the two, as in these quotes, is often small, but clear. as. day.)

Posted by: homunq at February 5, 2008 06:29 PM

Yes. They both suck, but that's all we got, so let's do nothing about it and vote for them anyway. There's no such thing as trying to start another movement. Like a third party that would supplant the Democrats, the way the Republicans supplanted the Whigs.

Posted by: littlehorn at February 5, 2008 08:06 PM