The October Surprise

by on September 4, 2008 · 1 comment

in Election, Media, War and Peace

If you’ve been following the Republican Convention,—and it’s a little like reading “Alice in Wonderland”—you’ve no doubt noticed the distance the speakers have placed between the Party and its sitting President (that would be George W. Bush).  His name was mentioned only once (in passing by Mitt Romney) by the parade of speakers calling upon McCain to reform Washington .

It doesn’t seem to be relevant to the party faithful that the GOP has been mostly running the show for the last eight years. Or that seven of the nine Supreme Court Justices were appointed by Republican Presidents. Or that the list of partisan and/or mismanagement outrages under Bush should be long enough to discourage all but the most partisan optimist.


There is one word that has yet to appear in any of the speeches to the party faithful: Afghanistan . The presumptive nominee who’s promised to chase Osama bin Laden to the “gates of hell” can’t get a shout out from his cronies for what is mostly likely the most serious hotspot in the “battle against terrorism”?  What’s up with that?


It’s easy for them to talk about Iraq because they fail to understand that the sectarian differences have, temporarily, been put aside in the face of a national unity effort to get the US military out of the picture. Afghanistan , on the other hand, is about fighting terrorism and the Taliban and bin Laden. (Never mind that there can never be a solely military solution; we’re in the middle of the GOP mindset now.) 


None-the-less, it may be both President Bush and the war that nobody mentioned that offers the best chance for Republican victory in the Presidential contest this fall.  The best thing that Bush could do for McCain would be the capture of bin Laden in the next few weeks.  The “hostile” news media would suddenly change its tune and the carefully orchestrated swelling of national pride would pave the road for GOP victories unthinkable in today’s political climate.


Paranoid? Speculative? No, No & No!

 From the Bush friendly Washington Times:


“U.S. ground forces crossed the border from Afghanistan and attacked suspected al Qaeda targets in Pakistan on Wednesday as part of an aggressive new strategy to kill or capture Osama bin Laden before President Bush leaves office…”‘I know the hunt is on; they’re pulling out all the stops,’ said a Defense Department official with knowledge of the situation who asked not to be named. ‘They are leaving no stone unturned. They want to find bin Laden before the president leaves office and ensure that al Qaeda will not attack the U.S. during the upcoming elections.’ . .  


From the New York Times….

“Until now, allied forces in Afghanistan have occasionally carried out airstrikes and artillery attacks in the border region of Pakistan against militants hiding there, and American forces in ‘hot pursuit’ of militants have had some latitude to chase them across the border.

“But the commando raid by the American forces signaled what top American officials said could be the opening salvo in a much broader campaign by Special Operations forces against the Taliban and Al Qaeda inside Pakistan, a secret plan that Defense Secretary Robert M. Gates has been advocating for months within President Bush’s war council…”


And the Sunday Times of London reported (back in June)…

President George W Bush has enlisted British special forces in a final attempt to capture Osama Bin Laden before he leaves the White House….Defence and intelligence sources in Washington and London confirmed that a renewed hunt was on for the leader of the September 11 attacks. “If he [Bush] can say he has killed Saddam Hussein and captured Bin Laden, he can claim to have left the world a safer place,” said a US intelligence source.  The [British] Special Boat Service (SBS) and the Special Reconnaissance Regiment have been taking part in the US-led operations to capture Bin Laden in the wild frontier region of northern Pakistan. It is the first time they have operated across the Afghan border on a regular basis. One US intelligence source compared the ‘growing number of clandestine reconnaissance missions’ inside Pakistan with those conducted in Laos and Cambodia at the height of the Vietnam war.”


Of course, if Bush can’t catch him, McCain has a plan.


From a McCain townhall meeting (August 20)


QUESTIONER: If we don’t reenact the draft, I don’t think we’ll have anyone to chase Bin Laden to the gates of hell.

MCCAIN: Ma’am, let me say that I don’t disagree with anything you said.



{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

Burr Deming September 7, 2008 at 6:18 pm

Our site takes a generally supportive view of Obama. We think that there are important differences between the McCain and Obama approaches to terrorism, and that those differences result from a more basic departure in world view. The Bush-McCain approach is unrealistic.

Thanks for adding your opinion.


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