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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 July 17, 2008 14 Tamuz 5768

Barack Obama's plan ignores the facts

By Michael Goodwin


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http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | Barack Obama and John McCain had a virtual debate on Iraq and Afghanistan Tuesday and there were two takeaways. The first is that they agree on the need for more troops in Afghanistan. The second is that Obama's vision of Iraq and how it fits into our national security is, to put it kindly, still a work in progress.


Their speeches, Obama's in Washington and McCain's in New Mexico, were carried back to back on the cable networks. It's the closest thing we're likely to get to a debate until September because Obama has rejected McCain's invitation for joint appearances.


After Tuesday, I can see why. Obama is most comfortable reading a prepared speech from a TelePrompTer, while McCain likes to roam a stage, mixing prepared remarks with a question-and-answer format. Each was in his element, but McCain was far more realistic and persuasive on the connection between Iraq and Afghanistan and the need to keep pressing forward in both. "We can succeed in both," he said.


McCain, whose appearances often have a funereal quality, has been ramping up the energy level and it showed. He was animated before an audience that appreciated his determination and earned a standing ovation when he vowed, "I will get Osama Bin Laden and bring him to justice. I will do that."


Obama, in fairness, chose a subdued format with another purpose: to make what his team called a "major policy address" on national security. It was a choice born of necessity, with his recent contradictory remarks on Iraq and other issues creating doubts about his readiness to be commander in chief.


He was only partially successful in dispelling those doubts. While he offered a compelling view of how America should have engaged the world after 9/11 instead of invading Iraq and getting bogged down, the speech suffered from fundamental flaws in logic and fact that Obama refuses to confront.


He can't bring himself to acknowledge how the successful surge of our troops has altered the dynamics in Iraq and that he was wrong to oppose it. He went further than usual in citing "the gains of the surge," but still won't factor those gains into his commitment to withdraw combat troops over 16 months. When he says, "I stand by my pledges to end the war," he might as well add, "The facts be damned."


Meanwhile, he wants to use the surge strategy in Afghanistan, saying, "This is a war we have to win." The contrast he set up suggests he does not believe Iraq is a meaningful struggle and that we have little stake in the outcome. The number of Americans who agree with him is declining because of the success, proving they were not opposed to the war as much as they opposed losing it.


There were other head-scratchers as well. Obama talked tough about forging a new relationship with Pakistan to keep militants from crossing into Afghanistan. But in the next breath, he attacked President Pervez Musharraf, who, despite his flaws, is more committed to rooting out Taliban and Al Qaeda elements than the coalition government now calling the shots.


Obama also talked about stopping Iran's nuclear program in ways I find confusing. While he promised to "use all elements of American power to pressure the Iranian regime," he praised European governments that have been less forceful than our own. His pressure tactics come down to meeting with Iranian leaders and threatening more sanctions, which are not likely to get through the Security Council.


And as bromides go, there was this one: "It's time to reform the United Nations, so that this imperfect institution can become a more perfect forum to share burdens, strengthen our leverage and promote our values."


That'll leave 'em laughing in Tehran, and it begs a question: Is that all there is?

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.


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