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A Credibility-killing Moment

When it comes to John McCain’s assessment of conditions in Baghdad, the military knows he’s wrong, reporters in Iraq know he’s wrong

When it comes to John McCain’s assessment of conditions in Baghdad, the military knows he’s wrong, reporters in Iraq know he’s wrong, and now Iraqis themselves want to tell us that they know he’s wrong, too.

It was bad enough last week when McCain said parts of Baghdad are safe for Americans to go for a stroll and that General Petraeus travels around the city “almost every day in a non-armed Humvee.” But McCain really seems to have pushed his luck by going to a Baghdad market, surrounding himself with 100 soldiers, three Blackhawk helicopters, and two Apache gunships, and then telling reporters that was able to walk freely in Iraq’s capital.

Locals are disgusted by the senator’s dishonesty.

A day after members of an American Congressional delegation led by Senator John McCain pointed to their brief visit to Baghdad’s central market as evidence that the new security plan for the city was working, the merchants there were incredulous about the Americans’ conclusions.

“What are they talking about?” Ali Jassim Faiyad, the owner of an electrical appliances shop in the market, said Monday. “The security procedures were abnormal! … They paralyzed the market when they came. This was only for the media.”

Given the coverage and the audacity of McCain’s foolishness, this is starting to look more and more like a jump-the-shark moment for the senator. When a once-proud man becomes a joke, it’s a sad thing to watch.

UPDATE: (Nicole) Snipers return to market after McCain's visit. Surprise, surprise, surprise.

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