It may only be July, and Election Day may still be 104 days away, but we’ve reached the point at which the McCain campaign is even willing to attack Barack Obama’s remembrance of the Nazi Holocaust.
Speaking today at Yad Vashem, Obama said, “Let our children come here and know this history so they can add their voices to proclaim ‘never again.’ And may we remember those who perished, not only as victims but also as individuals who hoped and loved and dreamed like us and who have become symbols of the human spirit.”
Soon after, the hopelessly tasteless McCain campaign alerted reporters to a news item from a year ago.
Democratic presidential hopeful Barack Obama said Thursday the United States cannot use its military to solve humanitarian problems and that preventing a potential genocide in Iraq isn’t a good enough reason to keep U.S. forces there.
“Well, look, if that’s the criteria by which we are making decisions on the deployment of U.S. forces, then by that argument you would have 300,000 troops in the Congo right now — where millions have been slaughtered as a consequence of ethnic strife — which we haven’t done,” Obama said in an interview with The Associated Press.
In other words, the McCain campaign wants Americans to believe that Obama is weak on genocide. Asked for clarification, McCain aide Michael Goldfarb told the Huffington Post, “Today he says ‘never again.’ A year ago stopping genocide wasn’t a good enough reason to keep U.S. forces in Iraq. Doesn’t that strike you as inconsistent?”
Not for those of us with cerebral cortexes.
It’s not especially complicated. A year ago, Obama wasn’t suggesting genocide is tolerable, and he wasn’t advocating indifference for murder on a grand scale. He was simply making the point that if genocidal attacks alone were the basis for a massive military deployments, we’d have deployed thousands of U.S. troops to central Africa right now. That we haven’t suggests that genocide — or in the case of Iraq, speculative potential for genocide — does not drive U.S. military deployments.
But in response to this obvious observation, the McCain campaign has decided Obama, speaking in Israel about “never again,” must be insincere.
There’s something deeply wrong with these people. I know McCain brought in Rove’s team to run the show, but his campaign operation is getting … ugly.
The HuffPost added:
It’s a heavy charge to make, not least because Obama had just wrapped up his visit to the Holocaust memorial. In addition, there are, for better or worse, outstanding implications when discussing genocide when it comes to Jews — and the insertion of the issue into the presidential campaign will border for some, on the taboo. Moreover, on the topic of Iraq, Obama has said he would leave a residual force to intervene in potential humanitarian crises and that he reserves the right to intervene militarily with international partners in order to “suppress potential genocidal violence within Iraq.”