more-of-the-same McCain

David Olive writes:

"We are winning in Iraq," says McCain, who famously demonstrated the new and safer Baghdad last spring by visiting the downtown Shorja market wearing a Kevlar vest and guarded by more than 100 U.S. soldiers, two Apache gunships, and three Black Hawk helicopters. Within a day of the departure the McCain entourage, 21 merchants and workers in the Shorja market were ambushed and killed.

One needn't venture into the murky realm of psychoanalysis to grasp McCain's worldview. As they say, if your only tool is a hammer, every problem looks like a nail. McCain, described as third-generation navy royalty, is the son of a U.S. admiral who led the U.S. overthrow of a democratically elected government in the Dominican Republic in 1965, and the grandson of a U.S. admiral who helped eradicate local opposition to the American invasion of the Philippines at the turn of the previous century.

McCain's new theme in debates and town-hall meetings is that Americans should expect to retain a military presence in Iraq "for a 100 years," citing the continued U.S. presence in places such as Japan and Korea. McCain misses the point that America is not at war in Okinawa or Korea's 38th parallel, And that even U.S. war hawks are beginning to realize it is the mere presence of U.S. military forces that has inflamed anti-Americanism, not just in war zones but globally. It was, after all, America's military bases in Saudi Arabia that inspired Osama bin Laden to attack U.S. assets around the world.

McCain struggled in naval academy, finishing 894th out of 899 students, and was rejected by the U.S. National War College until his family intervened with the Secretary of the Navy. In active service, McCain was, by his lengthy acknowledgement in a commencement address last year, a "discipline problem" of violent disposition and frequent insubordination who came late to the task of proving himself.
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McCain's frequently touted early criticism of the Iraq war, directed at Donald Rumsfeld (but never at Bush, the only man who could fire him), reinforces the probability that McCain is not really running for president. "I'm going to be honest. I know a lot less about economics than I do about military and foreign policy issues," he said in a 2005 interview. Which means reviving the economy and delivering universal health care don't top McCain's to-do list. The post McCain seeks is commander-in-chief; he is determined to succeed in Iraq where Bush and Rumsfeld failed.

It isn't McCain's recent statement that an Iran with nuclear ambitions should be threatened with "extinction" that's particularly disturbing. Or his twisted idea of humour at a campaign event last April in singing "Bomb, bomb, bomb, bomb, bomb Iran" to the tune of the Beach Boys' "Barbara Ann." It's McCain's utter conviction that, no matter what the sentiment of the American people, he knows better. And that sounds a lot like the last seven years.


via: Informed Comment

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