Monday, December 1, 2008

The Hawk Flies

Obama's security team delights the hawks

Barack Obama will announce his national security team today to approval from the military establishment and Republicans, distant cries of dissent from liberals and head-scratching from others.

The President-elect is expected to confirm the nomination of Hillary Clinton as Secretary of State, ask Robert Gates to remain at the Pentagon, and make General Jim Jones his National Security Adviser.

Critics from the Left have said that Mr Obama is breaking promises to bring change. The Nation magazine has noted that “not a solitary dyed-in-the-wool progressive” has been floated for a senior Cabinet position. more

December 1, 2008

The End of the Affair

Obama and the antiwar movement

Justin Raimondo

The War Party's decisive influence in the Obama administration is going to be rolled out on Monday, so that even the most craven Obama-bots on the Left will be left wondering who and what they voted for. Hillary the hawk at State, Bush's warlord Robert Gates at Defense, and Gen. Jim Jones – who wants to station U.S. troops in the occupied territories under the rubric of NATO! – as national security adviser to the president. Yes, antiwar voters took a chance on Obama, reasoning that anything would be better than four more years of Bushian belligerence, yet now they discover to their chagrin that the dice are loaded.

The same old crowd that brought us the invasion of Iraq is back, if not in full force or purest form, then at least in worrying numbers and high positions. The cries of "betrayal" are already being heard. more


Obama's cabinet selections win praise from the right
By Tom Eley
1st December 2008

Prominent voices from the political right have endorsed President-elect Barack Obama’s cabinet picks, both for his economic and national security “teams.”

On November 28, the Wall Street Journal ran an editorial entitled “Obama’s War Cabinet,” which lauded President-elect Barack Obama’s widely-anticipated decisions to keep Robert Gates on as Secretary of Defense and to select retired general James Jones as National Security Adviser, the top two civilian military positions in the federal government. The selections, the editorial notes, mean that Obama intends to carry on the Bush administration’s military policy in Iraq and beyond. more


December 01, 2008

"If the only tool you have is a hammer ..."

"... you will see every problem as a nail."

The foreign policy persons Obama selected for his cabinet are hawks.

Clinton as Sec State, Gates at Defense, a General as national security advisor and an Admiral as director of national intelligence. (Is there any other democracy that puts so many (ex-)military people into political positions?).

Susan S. Rice at the U.N., the worst choice possible after John R. Bolton. She will argue to bomb this or that country whenever something complicate might happen there. Africom will get a lot of stuff to do.

Obama promised to increase the U.S. troop strength by some 90,000. 20,000 active military will be dedicated to homeland security within the U.S. The hammer will get bigger and the urge to use it even stronger.

What country will he bomb first? We already know of Afghanistan and Pakistan. But where else does he want to kill? Somalia? Sudan? Kenia?

As for Change - why not use some nukes?

Moon of Alabama


Clinton, Gates, Jones
Carolyn Kaster / AP; Roslan Rahman / AFP/Getty Images; Dennis Cook / AP
THE TEAM: No longer a rival, Clinton and Obama hold similar positions on many issues. Gates, center, is admired by the Obama team despite significant differences over nuclear weapons policy. Jones has separated himself from the Obama playbook on a few issues, including troop withdrawal.

On other issues, Gates has not supported Obama's 16-month Iraq troop drawdown plan, and has publicly urged U.S. leaders to brace for a commitment that could last years. Still, Gates has differed from the Bush administration on Iraq troop policy.

Gates' approach to the war in Afghanistan has come under fire from Obama's team, which complains it has relied too heavily on air attacks that result in civilian casualties. more


Chris Hedges

Barack Obama’s decision to increase troop levels in Afghanistan and leave behind tens of thousands of soldiers and Marines in Iraq—he promises only to withdraw combat brigades—is a failure to rescue us from the status of a rogue nation. It codifies Bush’s “war on terror.” And the continuation of these wars will corrupt and degrade our nation just as the long and brutal
occupation of Gaza and the West Bank has corrupted and degraded Israel. George W. Bush has handed Barack Obama a poisoned apple. Obama has bitten it. more


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