Friday, July 04, 2008

Attacking McCain's "lack" of Executive Experience by Attacking his Military Service

“I live by a simple rule. If you wore the uniform, if you served your nation with honor, and especially if you fought and were wounded in battle, then you have earned the right to be treated with respect.” “That’s why I am so outraged that the Republican party has systematically attacked the wartime service and patriotism of veterans who are running for office as Democrats. It is despicable — the sign of a party more concerned about hanging onto power by any means possible than with giving veterans the respect they have earned.”-Gen Wesley Clark (Ret) October 2006

American Power:
Wesley Clark went on CBS’s Face the Nation, where he proceeded to dismiss the import of McCain’s military background in the current race. “I don’t think getting in a fighter plane and getting shot down is a qualification to become president,” Clark sniffed. The real issue, according to Clark, was that McCain was “untested and untried.”

By way of Flopping Aces:

Jim McCormack:

Clark’s attack is a bit like saying that JFK’s boat getting sunk wasn’t a qualification to become president in 1960.


But here’s a question: if the willingness to fight for your country, put your life on the line and suffer the brutality McCain suffered as a POW doesn’t make the cut as far as qualifications go, how far below that does a “community organizer” show up on the list of non-qualifications?

The contrast between McCain's experience, period, and that of Obama's experience is quite stark.

Wesley Clark also said:
“He has been a voice on the Senate Armed Services Committee. And he has traveled all over the world. But he hasn't held executive responsibility. That large squadron in the Navy that he commanded — that wasn't a wartime squadron,”
This is absolute spin, at the expense of insulting those who serve in the military, but haven't seen combat.

It's also a strawman attack, as McCain isn't campaigning as the I served in Vietnam" candidate. In From the Cold notes:
Funny, but we can't recall Mr. McCain (or his campaign) ever saying that his stint as a POW is a prerequisite for serving as Commander-in-Chief. McCain's years as a naval aviator are merely one example of his years of public service--and the hardships he has endured for his country.

McCain’s campaign was quick to condemn Clark’s comments.
Secretly, though, it must have been pleased. With his surrogates blasting away
at McCain’s war record, Obama was left exposed on several flanks. If McCain,
with his 22-year career in the Navy and his 26-years in Congress, is “untested
and untried,” what then is one to make of Obama, whose single term in the senate
is most notable for its pious adherence to liberal orthodoxy? Meanwhile, to
discount McCain’s distinguished military career – his honors include the Silver
Star, the Bronze Star, the Legion of Merit, the Purple Heart, and the
Distinguished Flying Cross – as nothing more than “getting into a fighter plane
and getting shut down” is to traffic in precisely the kind of sleazy politics
that Obama, once upon a time, professed to reject. Of all the fights one could
pick with McCain, the battle over his war service surely is the most
ill-advised. Recognizing the fact, Obama later
rejected Clark’s statement through a

But according to Obama’s supporters on the Left, he was wrong
to do so. On liberal blogs, it’s de rigueur to sneer that McCain’s naval service
is actually a sham, his accomplishments falsely inflated to sell the senator as
a war hero. In this account, McCain is a serial incompetent who “lost” five
planes as a pilot. As a writer on the Huffington Post recently put it, “From day
one in the Navy, McCain screwed-up again and again, only to be forgiven because
his father and grandfather were four-star admirals.”

That is one way to
look at it. Another is that McCain’s critics are shamefully ignorant of the war
record they disparage.

Take the planes that McCain lost, allegedly
through his bungling. Even a brief review of the record indicates otherwise.
Twice, McCain’s planes experienced engine failure, forcing him to eject. In both
cases, McCain biographer Paul Alexander observes, McCain survived a crash “that
occurred through no fault of his own.” On another occasion, in July of 1967,
McCain’s A-4 Skyhawk, then aboard the USS Forrestal air craft carrier, was
destroyed when a missile accidentally fired from another plane struck its fuel
tank. McCain barely survived the blast, and 134 soldiers were killed in the
ensuing blaze. Most famously, in October of 1967, McCain was shot down over
North Vietnam by a surface-to-air missile. Ejecting from the plane, McCain broke
both his arms upon landing and was captured by the Vietnamese; he would spend
the next six brutal years as a prisoner of war.

None McCain’s fault,
these crashes would seem merely to affirm his dedication to his country in the
face of life-threatening trials and tribulations. And while it is true that
McCain could have benefited from the prestige of his admiral father, he
specifically declined to do so, refusing his Vietnamese captors’ offer to be
released so that comrades who had been imprisoned longer could be set free. In
the face of this evidence, to portray McCain as a screw-up son of privilege is
to invert the truth.

I wonder....had Senator Obama been in McCain's shoes, would he have demonstrated the same strength of character? We don't know because Obama's character has never been....tested.

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Blogger Danny Vice said...

Wesley Clark trips all over himself every time he says anything, and does nothing more than make his liberal cohorts look like the power lusting, lying, manipulative flip floppers that they are.

Last go around, Clark crowed endlessly about Kerry’s service, and how horrible it was that anyone would doubt Kerry’s integrity. He held Kerry up as a hero and ABSOLUTELY advertised his service as a reason why Kerry was fit to be commander in chief.

Now he flip flops right on his face - as he usually does.

Conservatives flip flop from time to time, but they don’t throw any vet under the bus unless that vet is out there denigrating our troops - like Kerry did.

They are two peas in a pod.

Clark is a disgrace to the uniform and it’s a tragedy our soldiers and vets had to listen to him denigrate their service in such a way.

He had NO reason to even bring the issue up other than to attack something honorable about another man.

What a truly stupid man he is.

Danny Vice

Friday, July 18, 2008 12:55:00 AM  

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