Why Obama? Edwards and Hillary Voted for the War w/o Reading the NIE. Obama called it a DUMB WAR

THIS PRIMARY IS ABOUT OCTOBER 2002 AND THE WAR VOTE BY EDWARDS AND CLINTON

Why Obama? This is the main reason I am voting for Barack: because he had the good sense to be against the War in Iraq in 2002, calling it a “Dumb War”. Edwards meanwhile co-sponsored the Authorization of Force Resolution and said on the floor: “We know Saddam has WMD”.

Here is the devastating video of Edwards' floor speech to send us to war on a lie:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v…

What was Obama's speech on Iraq a month later? He called it a dumb war. Here's a video interview. Who had better judgement? Who was more for peace and diplomacy? Who is the true diplomacy-first leader? Barack Obama:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v…

Here is Hillary, trusting BUSH all the way:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v…

Think it's pretty clear who is a true leader instead of a calculating politician.

And Clinton? She is even worse than Edwards, not reading the NIE again, not even the summary! And then she even did something Joe LIEberman did not do, definitively link al Quada and Saddam:

HILLARY'S WAR According to Senate aides, because Clinton was not yet on the Armed Services Committee, she did not have anyone working for her with the security clearances needed to read the entire N.I.E. and the other highly classified reports that pertained to Iraq. She could have done the reading herself. Senators were able to access the N.I.E. at two secure locations in the Capitol complex. Nonetheless, only six senators personally read the report, according to a 2005 television interview with Senator Jay Rockefeller, Democrat of West Virginia and then the vice chairman of the intelligence panel. Earlier this year, on the presidential campaign trail in New Hampshire, Clinton was confronted by a woman who had traveled from New York to ask her if she had read the intelligence report. According to Eloise Harper of ABC News, Clinton responded that she had been briefed on it.

''Did you read it?'' the woman screamed. Clinton replied that she had been briefed, though she did not say by whom. The question of whether Clinton took the time to read the N.I.E. report is critically important. Indeed, one of Clinton's Democratic colleagues, Bob Graham, the Florida senator who was then the chairman of the intelligence committee, said he voted against the resolution on the war, in part, because he had read the complete N.I.E. report. Graham said he found that it did not persuade him that Iraq possessed W.M.D. As a result, he listened to Bush's claims more skeptically. ''I was able to apply caveat emptor,'' Graham, who has since left the Senate, observed in 2005. He added regretfully, ''Most of my colleagues could not.''

On Tuesday, Oct. 8, 2002, Senate Democrats, including Clinton, held a caucus over lunch on the second floor of the Capitol. There, Graham says he ''forcefully'' urged his colleagues to read the complete 90-page N.I.E. before casting such a monumental vote. In her own remarks on the Senate floor on Oct. 10, 2002, Clinton noted the existence of ''differing opinions within this body.'' Then she went on to offer a lengthy catalog of Saddam Hussein's crimes. She cited unnamed ''intelligence reports'' showing that between 1998 and 2002 ''Saddam Hussein has worked to rebuild his chemical and biological weapons stock, his missile-delivery capability and his nuclear program.'' Both the public and secret intelligence estimates on Iraq contained such analysis, but the complete N.I.E. report also included other views. A dissent by the State Department's intelligence arm concluded — correctly, as it turned out — that Iraq was not rebuilding its nuclear program.

Clinton continued, accusing Iraq's leader of giving ''aid, comfort and sanctuary to terrorists, including Al Qaeda members.'' This statement fit squarely within the ominous warning she issued the day after Sept. 11.

Clinton's linking of Iraq's leader and Al Qaeda, however, was unsupported by the conclusions of the N.I.E. and other secret intelligence reports that were available to senators before the vote. Indeed, the one document that supported Clinton's statement, a public letter from the C.I.A. to Senator Graham, mentioned ''growing indications of a relationship'' between Al Qaeda and Iraq but acknowledged that those indications were based on ''sources of varying reliability.'' In fact, the classified reports available to all senators at the time found that Iraq was not allied with Al Qaeda, and that Saddam Hussein and Osama bin Laden harbored feelings of deep mistrust and enmity for each other.

Nevertheless, on the sensitive issue of collaboration between Al Qaeda and Iraq, Senator Clinton found herself adopting the same argument that was being aggressively pushed by the administration. Bush, Vice President Dick Cheney and other administration officials had repeated their claim frequently, and by early October 2002, two out of three Americans believed that Saddam Hussein was connected to the Sept. 11 attacks. By contrast, most of the other Senate Democrats, even those who voted for the war authorization, did not make the Qaeda connection in their remarks on the Senate floor. One Democratic senator who voted for the war resolution and praised President Bush for his course of ''moderation and deliberation,'' Joe Biden of Delaware, actively assailed the reports of Al Qaeda in Iraq, calling them ''much exaggerated.'' Senator Dianne Feinstein of California described any link between Saddam Hussein and Al Qaeda as ''tenuous.'' The Democratic senator who came closest to echoing Clinton's remarks about Hussein's supposed assistance to Al Qaeda was Joseph Lieberman of Connecticut. Yet even Lieberman noted that ''the relationship between Al Qaeda and Saddam's regime is a subject of intense debate within the intelligence community.''

For most of those who had served in the Clinton administration, the supposed link between Saddam Hussein and Al Qaeda had come to seem baseless. ''We all knew it was ,'' said Kenneth Pollack, who was a national-security official under President Clinton and a leading proponent of overthrowing Saddam Hussein. Pollack says he discussed Iraq with Clinton before her vote in 2002, but he won't disclose his advice.

The Saddam-Al Qaeda link, so aggressively pushed by the Bush administration, was later debunked as false. So how could Clinton, named in 2006 by The Washingtonian magazine as the ''brainiest'' senator, have gotten such a critical point wrong? Referring to the larger question of her support for the authorization, Clinton said in February of this year, ''My vote was a sincere vote based on the facts and assurances that I had at the time.''

http://query.nytimes.com/gst/f…

This is the most important difference in this primary: the Iraq War Vote.

Obama should talk about nothing else for the next 2 weeks and let people know EXACTLY how misguided, leaderless and arrogant both Edwards and CLinton were in October 2002, for not reading the NIE — then sending our troops into a war they could never win.

WHY DIDN'T EDWARDS READ THE NIE BEFORE VOTING? WHY DIDN'T CLINTON? — BECAUSE THEY WANTED TO APPEAR HAWKISH TO RUN FOR PRESIDENT.


OBAMA'S SPEECH OCTOBER 2002:

Good afternoon. Let me begin by saying that although this has been billed as an anti-war rally, I stand before you as someone who is not opposed to war in all circumstances.

The Civil War was one of the bloodiest in history, and yet it was only through the crucible of the sword, the sacrifice of multitudes, that we could begin to perfect this union, and drive the scourge of slavery from our soil. I don't oppose all wars.

My grandfather signed up for a war the day after Pearl Harbor was bombed, fought in Patton's army. He saw the dead and dying across the fields of Europe; he heard the stories of fellow troops who first entered Auschwitz and Treblinka. He fought in the name of a larger freedom, part of that arsenal of democracy that triumphed over evil, and he did not fight in vain.

I don't oppose all wars.

After September 11th, after witnessing the carnage and destruction, the dust and the tears, I supported this Administration's pledge to hunt down and root out those who would slaughter innocents in the name of intolerance, and I would willingly take up arms myself to prevent such a tragedy from happening again.

I don't oppose all wars. And I know that in this crowd today, there is no shortage of patriots, or of patriotism. What I am opposed to is a dumb war. What I am opposed to is a rash war. What I am opposed to is the cynical attempt by Richard Perle and Paul Wolfowitz and other arm-chair, weekend warriors in this Administration to shove their own ideological agendas down our throats, irrespective of the costs in lives lost and in hardships borne.

What I am opposed to is the attempt by political hacks like Karl Rove to distract us from a rise in the uninsured, a rise in the poverty rate, a drop in the median income – to distract us from corporate scandals and a stock market that has just gone through the worst month since the Great Depression.

That's what I'm opposed to. A dumb war. A rash war. A war based not on reason but on passion, not on principle but on politics.

Now let me be clear – I suffer no illusions about Saddam Hussein. He is a brutal man. A ruthless man. A man who butchers his own people to secure his own power. He has repeatedly defied UN resolutions, thwarted UN inspection teams, developed chemical and biological weapons, and coveted nuclear capacity.

He's a bad guy. The world, and the Iraqi people, would be better off without him.

But I also know that Saddam poses no imminent and direct threat to the United States, or to his neighbors, that the Iraqi economy is in shambles, that the Iraqi military a fraction of its former strength, and that in concert with the international community he can be contained until, in the way of all petty dictators, he falls away into the dustbin of history.

I know that even a successful war against Iraq will require a US occupation of undetermined length, at undetermined cost, with undetermined consequences. I know that an invasion of Iraq without a clear rationale and without strong international support will only fan the flames of the Middle East, and encourage the worst, rather than best, impulses of the Arab world, and strengthen the recruitment arm of al-Qaeda.

I am not opposed to all wars. I'm opposed to dumb wars.

So for those of us who seek a more just and secure world for our children, let us send a clear message to the president today. You want a fight, President Bush? Let's finish the fight with Bin Laden and al-Qaeda, through effective, coordinated intelligence, and a shutting down of the financial networks that support terrorism, and a homeland security program that involves more than color-coded warnings.

You want a fight, President Bush? Let's fight to make sure that the UN inspectors can do their work, and that we vigorously enforce a non-proliferation treaty, and that former enemies and current allies like Russia safeguard and ultimately eliminate their stores of nuclear material, and that nations like Pakistan and India never use the terrible weapons already in their possession, and that the arms merchants in our own country stop feeding the countless wars that rage across the globe.

You want a fight, President Bush? Let's fight to make sure our so-called allies in the Middle East, the Saudis and the Egyptians, stop oppressing their own people, and suppressing dissent, and tolerating corruption and inequality, and mismanaging their economies so that their youth grow up without education, without prospects, without hope, the ready recruits of terrorist cells.

You want a fight, President Bush? Let's fight to wean ourselves off Middle East oil, through an energy policy that doesn't simply serve the interests of Exxon and Mobil.

Those are the battles that we need to fight. Those are the battles that we willingly join. The battles against ignorance and intolerance. Corruption and greed. Poverty and despair.

The consequences of war are dire, the sacrifices immeasurable. We may have occasion in our lifetime to once again rise up in defense of our freedom, and pay the wages of war. But we ought not – we will not – travel down that hellish path blindly. Nor should we allow those who would march off and pay the ultimate sacrifice, who would prove the full measure of devotion with their blood, to make such an awful sacrifice in vain.

  • right, and then Obama

    while campaigning for the Senate, said Congress has to stop getting “steamrolled” by the Bush administration seeking funding for this war.

    Then, after his election to the Senate, Obama voted for several Iraq War supplemental funding bills.

    The only one he voted against was the one this past May, and he sat on the sidelines while Chris Dodd and others led the charge to DENY Bush more funding for the war. Obama and Clinton waited until almost all the other Senators had voted, then finally voted no.

    It’s easy to talk a tough game when you are not in the Senate. Once in the Senate, Obama has been extremely cautious.

    Edwards recognized his mistake early and voted NO on an $87 billion check to continue Bush’s war.

    • You mean Edwards was for the war before he was against it?

      Not a very electable platform  – seems one John Kerry already lost running on that in 2004.

      IT was even the same $87 billion bill!

      The truth is you are misdirecting, the point here is who had the good judgement to read the NIE themselves — NOT Edwards and Clinton unfortunately or we wouldn’t be in this mess today.

      Why didn’t Edwards or Clinton stand up to Bush in ’02?

      Because they knew they were running for President and wanted to appear as hawkish as possible in the middle of all that war hysteria.

      Bad leadership qualities — compared to Obama’s Rash War speech at the same time.

      They had access to the real info within the NIE but chose not to read it so they would have an excuse to be hawks.

      • if you think Obama can win

        by running on a speech he gave in October 2002, then we just disagree.

        Howard Dean tried running on this message, and it didn’t work.

        Why hasn’t Obama been LEADING the drive to end the war since he was elected to the Senate? Where was he in May when Chris Dodd led the charge against another supplemental funding bill?

        Come to think of it, which important issue has Obama been leading on since he got elected to the Senate?

        By the way, I think Kerry did win the 2004 election. Ohio was stolen.

        • Here is what Obama said about the Surge and the war on the floor of the Senate:

          There is no reason to believe that more of the same will achieve these objectives in Iraq. And, while some have proposed escalating this war by adding thousands of more troops, there is little reason to believe that this will achieve these results either. It’s not clear that these troop levels are sustainable for a significant period of time, and according to our commanders on the ground, adding American forces will only relieve the Iraqis from doing more on their own. Moreover, without a coherent strategy or better cooperation from the Iraqis, we would only be putting more of our soldiers in the crossfire of a civil war.

          Let me underscore this point. The American soldiers I met when I traveled to Iraq this year were performing their duties with bravery, with brilliance, and without question. They are doing so today. They have battled insurgents, secured cities, and maintained some semblance of order in Iraq. But even as they have carried out their responsibilities with excellence and valor, they have also told me that there is no military solution to this war. Our troops can help suppress the violence, but they cannot solve its root causes. And all the troops in the world won’t be able to force Shia, Sunni, and Kurd to sit down at a table, resolve their differences, and forge a lasting peace.

          I have long said that the only solution in Iraq is a political one. To reach such a solution, we must communicate clearly and effectively to the factions in Iraq that the days of asking, urging, and waiting for them to take control of their own country are coming to an end. No more coddling, no more equivocation. Our best hope for success is to use the tools we have – military, financial, diplomatic – to pressure the Iraqi leadership to finally come to a political agreement between the warring factions that can create some sense of stability in the country and bring this conflict under control.

          The first part of this strategy begins by exerting the greatest leverage we have on the Iraqi government – a phased redeployment of U.S. troops from Iraq on a timetable that would begin in four to six months.

          On the election being stolen in Ohio, I would have to agree with you on THAT.  

          I stand corrected!

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