Home
In this issue

Jonathan Tobin: Defending the Right to a Jewish State

Heather Hale: Compliment your kids without giving them big heads

Megan Shauri: 10 ways you are ruining your own happiness

Carolyn Bigda: 8 Best Dividend Stocks for 2015

Kiplinger's Personal Finance editors: 7 Things You Didn't Know About Paying Off Student Loans

Samantha Olson: The Crucial Mistake 55% Of Parents Are Making At Their Baby's Bedtime

Densie Well, Ph.D., R.D. Open your eyes to yellow vegetables

The Kosher Gourmet by Megan Gordon With its colorful cache of purples and oranges and reds, COLLARD GREEN SLAW is a marvelous mood booster --- not to mention just downright delish
April 18, 2014

Rabbi Yonason Goldson: Clarifying one of the greatest philosophical conundrums in theology

Caroline B. Glick: The disappearance of US will

Megan Wallgren: 10 things I've learned from my teenagers

Lizette Borreli: Green Tea Boosts Brain Power, May Help Treat Dementia

John Ericson: Trying hard to be 'positive' but never succeeding? Blame Your Brain

The Kosher Gourmet by Julie Rothman Almondy, flourless torta del re (Italian king's cake), has royal roots, is simple to make, . . . but devour it because it's simply delicious

April 14, 2014

Rabbi Dr Naftali Brawer: Passover frees us from the tyranny of time

Greg Crosby: Passing Over Religion

Eric Schulzke: First degree: How America really recovered from a murder epidemic

Georgia Lee: When love is not enough: Teaching your kids about the realities of adult relationships

Cameron Huddleston: Freebies for Your Lawn and Garden

Gordon Pape: How you can tell if your financial adviser is setting you up for potential ruin

Dana Dovey: Up to 500,000 people die each year from hepatitis C-related liver disease. New Treatment Has Over 90% Success Rate

Justin Caba: Eating Watermelon Can Help Control High Blood Pressure

The Kosher Gourmet by Joshua E. London and Lou Marmon Don't dare pass over these Pesach picks for Manischewitz!

April 11, 2014

Rabbi Hillel Goldberg: Silence is much more than golden

Caroline B. Glick: Forgetting freedom at Passover

Susan Swann: How to value a child for who he is, not just what he does

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Financial Tasks You Should Tackle Right Now

Sandra Block and Lisa Gerstner: How to Profit From Your Passion

Susan Scutti: A Simple Blood Test Might Soon Diagnose Cancer

Chris Weller: Have A Slow Metabolism? Let Science Speed It Up For You

The Kosher Gourmet by Diane Rossen Worthington Whitefish Terrine: A French take on gefilte fish

April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review June 2, 2008 29 Iyar 5768

Obama's perfect liberal instincts

By Michael Goodwin


Printer Friendly Version
Email this article


http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | Nothing describes Barack Obama better than the cliche about a man facing good news/bad news. The good news for Obama is that he is getting a first-rate education on what it means to be commander in chief. The bad news - his teacher is John McCain.


Even before he clinches the nomination, a flurry of McCain attacks over Iran, Iraq, Cuba and military leadership has exposed Obama's soft underbelly on national security. The effective barrage is a testament to how the primary battles never tested the rookie Democrat on whether he is ready to be commander in chief.


In Prof. McCain's class, Obama is slowly making progress, but remains far below grade average. It's not certain he can catch up by November's final exam, where the threshold issue is the public's confidence a candidate can and will defend America. Perceived weakness is a disqualifier.


The problem for Obama, beyond his lack of experience, is that his instincts are those of the Perfect Liberal by way of Harvard Law School. Like Bill Clinton's clumsy attempts to salute when he first won the Oval Office, Obama exhibits discomfort about things military. He is a peacenik by gut and, as critics note, drew the wrong lessons about Cold War talks JFK and Ronald Reagan had with the Soviets.


That didn't matter during the primary battle, where Obama's early opposition to Iraq was a defining difference against Hillary Clinton. But doubts about his national security bona fides are already a handicap in the nascent general election.


McCain, showing it is never too early to shape the battlefield to match your strengths, has ripped into Obama on a daily basis. Truth be told, Obama has presented him with a target-rich environment.


The first opening surfaced in a July 2007 debate, when Obama was asked if he would, without preconditions, meet in the first year of his administration with the leaders of Iran, Syria, Venezuela, Cuba and North Korea. Obama promptly and famously said, "I would."


Less noticed were his concluding words, which reflected a profoundly wrong view of the Mideast: "We need to talk to Iran and Syria because they're going to have responsibilities if Iraq collapses," he added. "They have been acting irresponsibly up until this point. But if we tell them that we are not going to be a permanent occupying force, we are in a position to say that they are going to have to carry some weight, in terms of stabilizing the region."


The suggestion that we are the bad guys while Iran and Syria could be helpful is beyond goofy and would alarm our Sunni Arab allies. Yet the assumption is key to Obama's withdrawal plan.


Even as Obama scales back on his promise of unconditional meetings with Iranian madman Mahmoud Ahmadinejad and Raul Castro, McCain has added two wrinkles. He scolded Obama for not meeting with our top Iraq commander, Gen. David Petraeus. And, noting Obama has not been to Iraq in two years, McCain suggested they go together.


Obama rejected the joint trip, but with John Kerry acknowledging his fellow Democrat should go to Iraq, Obama has little choice. But that won't be the end of McCain's advantage. By meeting our troops and commanders, Obama will be confronted with the fact that the surge of troops he opposed has made Iraq safer. What then?


Obama also should fix another mistake. Asked by Tim Russert on "Meet the Press" about evidence the U.S. had gathered on Iran's role in Iraq, Obama said "I want to ... take a look at the kind of evidence that the administration is putting forward" and mentioned Iran's "potential funding of militias inside of Iraq."


Both phrases suggest he's not convinced Iran is providing training and munitions to militias killing our troops. Yet instead of seeking a Pentagon briefing on the facts, his first instinct is doubt.


There's more. When New York Times columnist David Brooks questioned Obama about Hezbollah's miniwar with our ally, the government of Lebanon, Obama said we must make sure "the disaffected have an effective outlet for their grievances, which assures them they are getting social services." He also said Hezbollah and Hamas must realize violence "weakens their legitimate claims."


Obama has yet to define those "grievances" and "legitimate claims." Perhaps Prof. McCain can ask him to on the next quiz.

Every weekday JewishWorldReview.com publishes what many in Washington and the media consider "must-reading". Sign up for the daily JWR update. It's free. Just click here.




Michael Goodwin is a Pulitzer Prize-winning columnist for the New York Daily News. Comment by clicking here.


Archives


© 2007 NY Daily News