Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Clinton vs. Obama on Foreign Policy

Greg Craig's statement on Hillary's exaggerated foreign policy experience claims is useful chiefly in that it gives me another chance to highlight Craig's excellent C-SPAN interview from last December in which he forcefully lays out the case for Obama.

In Clinton's response to Craig, the lady doth protest too much, methinks. She makes a good case that she met people who liked her on her First Lady foreign jaunts, and some of her friends credit her with being helpful, in Northern Ireland, for example. But it's abundantly clear that she's trying hard way too hard to pump up her trips to sound presidential. This seems clearest in her campaign's account of the Bosnia trip:

The Obama campaign has resorted to mocking Hillary's trip to Bosnia in 1996, belittling it as a U.S.O. tour and saying there was no danger. But Hillary toured the frontlines of the international peacekeeping mission.

Her problem is that it's not just Obama mocking her trip--it's her USO co-star Sinbad, who was there with Clinton and Sheryl Crowe. Sinbad:

In an interview with the Sleuth Monday, he said the "scariest" part of the trip was wondering where he'd eat next. "I think the only 'red-phone' moment was: 'Do we eat here or at the next place.'" ....

"I never felt that I was in a dangerous position. I never felt being in a sense of peril, or 'Oh, God, I hope I'm going to be OK when I get out of this helicopter or when I get out of his tank.'"

In her Iowa stump speech, Clinton also said, "We used to say in the White House that if a place is too dangerous, too small or too poor, send the First Lady."
Say what? As Sinbad put it: "What kind of president would say, 'Hey, man, I can't go 'cause I might get shot so I'm going to send my wife...oh, and take a guitar player and a comedian with you.'"

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