The Washington Times - March 19, 2008, 04:32PM
Sen. Barack ObamaIraq SEE RELATED:

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“Senator Obama says that ending the war will not be easy, that ‘there will be dangers involved.’ Yet, in that patented way of his, he declines to name those dangers. Let me enumerate a few: al Qaeda, which is now on the run, will survive, claim victory and continue to provoke sectarian tensions that, while they have been subdued by the ‘tactics’ of the surge, still exist and are ripe for provocation by al Qaeda, which would almost certainly ignite again civil war in Iraq, a civil war that could easily descend into genocide. To say that invading Iraq was used as a recruiting tool for al Qaeda is one thing. To pretend that our defeat there won’t provide an even bigger one is foolish supposition. Iran, which trains Shia extremists and is known to arm and equip Sunni extremists, a fact Senator Obama is apparently unaware of, will also view our premature withdrawal as a victory, as will other countries in the region, and the biggest state supporter of terrorists, a country with nuclear ambitions and a stated desire to destroy the State of Israel, will see its influence in the Middle East grow significantly. These are some of ‘dangers,’ that our premature withdrawal from Iraq will engender, and they all have the potential to destabilize the entire region. A realistic plan to prevent them from occurring is what people with experience in statecraft call ‘strategy,’ something Senator Obama has not offered yet.\ \ “Senator Obama, as has also become a habit of his ‘new politics,’ mischaracterizes John McCain’s position by saying McCain did not want to reduce troops because the violence in Iraq was too high, and now do not wish to do so because the violence in down. The reason violence is down is because General Petraeus’ counterinsurgency is, which even Senator Obama recognizes, succeeding. Those ‘tactics,’ are advancing our ‘strategy.’ Deprive General Petraeus of the resources and manpower to employ those tactics, or worse, leave Iraq altogether, and our strategy will collapse. That is national security 101. John McCain wants American forces to come home when our clear and serious interests at stake in Iraq, which nearly 4,000 Americans have given their lives to secure, are truly safe, when al Qaeda is defeated; Iran’s influence is contained, and the potential for a truly cataclysmic civil war in Iraq is remote. That, I think, is what is called ‘making us safer.’ Senator Obama’s plan, if it can be charitably described as one, would do the reverse.”
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Hillary Rodham Clinton hit the ground running just days after her husband was sworn in as the nation’s 42nd president, putting together a health care task force and scheduling nearly daily meetings on the topic with her top aides and members of the Senate and House, her daily schedules show.\ \ The demanding schedule is documented among the 11,046 pages of her daily activities released this morning by the William J. Clinton Presidential Library as part of a Freedom of Information Act request sought by Judicial Watch, a Washington-based watchdog group.\ \ The Clintons had resisted for 15 years disclosing the records.\ \ “These documents are outlines of the first lady’s activities and illustrate the array of substantive issues she worked on \0x2014 including health care, child care, adoption, education, veterans, microenterprise and international development, women’s rights, and democracy,” the library said.\ \ “Her daily schedules also list some of the meetings and travel she conducted to more than 80 countries in pursuit of the administration’s domestic and foreign policy goals,” it said. “They are a guide, and of course cannot reflect all of Sen. Clinton’s activities as first lady.”\ \ The records are an accounting of her day-to-day activities from 1993 to 2001, when President Clinton left office, and include public and private meetings, speeches she made, dinners and other celebrations she attended, social engagements and numerous domestic and foreign trips.\ \ The documents show that on Jan. 23, 1993, just three days after her husband was sworn in, Mrs. Clinton scheduled a private meeting with several of her top aides to begin their lengthy discussions about health care. She had been appointed by Mr. Clinton to head and be chairwoman of the Task Force on National Health Care Reform, hoping to replicate the success she had had in leading the effort for education reform in Arkansas.
Christina Bellantoni, national political reporter, The Washington Times