Barack Obama: U.S. presidential election, 2008/al Qaeda, the Taliban and Pakistan

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Barack Obama, U.S. Senator (D-Ill.)
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In an August 1, 2007, speech[1][2] at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars, Sen. Barack Obama (D-Ill.) said "he would send troops into Pakistan to hunt down terrorists even without local permission if warranted ... [Obama warned] Pakistani President Gen. Pervez Musharraf that he must do more to shut down terrorist operations in his country and evict foreign fighters under an Obama presidency, or Pakistan will risk a U.S. troop invasion and losing hundreds of millions of dollars in U.S. military aid."[3]

However, "[a]nalysts say an invasion could risk destabilizing Pakistan, breeding more militancy and undermining Musharraf. The Pakistani Foreign Office, protective of its national sovereignty, has warned that U.S. military action would violate international law and be deeply resented," the Associated Press reported. "A military invasion could be risky, given Pakistan's hostile terrain and the suspicion of its warrior-minded tribesmen against uninvited outsiders."[4]

"The Democrat is trying to convince Americans he has the foreign policy heft to be president as a rival candidate, New York Democratic Sen. Hillary Clinton, questioned his readiness to be commander in chief," Reuters' Steve Holland wrote. "Clinton last week labeled Obama naive for saying he would be willing to meet the leaders of Iran, Cuba, Syria, North Korea and Venezuela without preconditions in his first year in office."[5]

Obama's speech[6] "is online now," Jerome Armstrong at MyDD wrote[7], "and contrary to the Obama fans that don't want to believe the MSM's quotes, his position is very clear:

"The first step must be getting off the wrong battlefield in Iraq, and taking the fight to the terrorists in Afghanistan and Pakistan.... If we have actionable intelligence about high-value terrorist targets and President Musharraf won’t act, we will.

"Basically, a continuation of the Bush doctrine of unilateral pre-emptive attacks in the mid-east, with Obama adding Pakistan to the list," Armstrong wrote.

The Clinton campaign did not respond immediately for a request for comment on Obama's remarks. Another Democratic rival, Delaware Sen. Joe Biden, thanked him for a 'Johnny-come-lately' position[8]," Holland wrote.[9]

On August 5, 2007, Fox News posted a photograph[10] captioned "Pakistani protestors chant anti American slogans after setting on fire effigies of U.S. President George W. Bush, center, Republican Tom Tancredo, left, and U.S. Presidential hopeful Barack Obama, right, at a protest rally in Lahore, Pakistan."

Update: Lahore, Pakistan, is the ancestral home of Benazir Bhutto, who was assassinated December 27, 2007.


Reaction to assassination of Benazir Bhutto

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References

  1. Full Text of Senator Obama's Speech On 9/11, Iraq, Bin Ladin, Al Qaeda, and Pakistan, BarackObama Blog, August 1, 2007.
  2. Video link of speech to be posted by Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars.
  3. "Obama says he would send troops into Pakistan to hunt down terrorists," Associated Press (ABC News), August 1, 2007.
  4. "Obama says he would send troops into Pakistan to hunt down terrorists," Associated Press (ABC News), August 1, 2007.
  5. Steve Holland, "Obama talks tough on Pakistan," Reuters, August 1, 2007.
  6. Full Text of Senator Obama's Speech On 9/11, Iraq, Bin Ladin, Al Qaeda, and Pakistan, BarackObama Blog, August 1, 2007.
  7. Jerome Armstrong, "Obama and the Mideast: Pakistan," MyDD, August 1, 2007.
  8. News Release: "Biden Campaign Congratulates Sen. Obama for Johnny-Come-Lately Position," Campaigns & Elections/nhpols.com, August 1, 2007.
  9. Steve Holland, "Obama talks tough on Pakistan," Reuters, August 1, 2007.
  10. "U.S. Under Fire in Pakistan," Fox News, August 5, 2007.

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