Skip to comments.NYT REJECTS MCCAIN'S EDITORIAL; SHOULD 'MIRROR' OBAMA
Posted on 07/21/2008 9:09:19 AM PDT by edzo4
NYT REJECTS MCCAIN'S EDITORIAL; SHOULD 'MIRROR' OBAMA Mon Jul 21 2008 12:00:25 ET
An editorial written by Republican presidential hopeful McCain has been rejected by the NEW YORK TIMES -- less than a week after the paper published an essay written by Obama, the DRUDGE REPORT has learned.
The paper's decision to refuse McCain's direct rebuttal to Obama's 'My Plan for Iraq' has ignited explosive charges of media bias in top Republican circles.
'It would be terrific to have an article from Senator McCain that mirrors Senator Obama's piece,' NYT Op-Ed editor David Shipley explained in an email late Friday to McCain's staff. 'I'm not going to be able to accept this piece as currently written.'
In McCain's submission to the TIMES, he writes of Obama: 'I am dismayed that he never talks about winning the waronly of ending it... if we don't win the war, our enemies will. A triumph for the terrorists would be a disaster for us. That is something I will not allow to happen as president.'
NYT's Shipley advised McCain to try again: 'I'd be pleased, though, to look at another draft.'
[Shipley served in the Clinton Administration from 1995 until 1997 as Special Assistant to the President and Senior Presidential Speechwriter.]
A top McCain source claims the paper simply does not agree with the senator's Iraq policy, and wants him to change it, not "re-work the draft."
McCain writes in the rejected essay: 'Progress has been due primarily to an increase in the number of troops and a change in their strategy. I was an early advocate of the surge at a time when it had few supporters in Washington. Senator Barack Obama was an equally vocal opponent. 'I am not persuaded that 20,000 additional troops in Iraq is going to solve the sectarian violence there,' he said on January 10, 2007. 'In fact, I think it will do the reverse.'
Shipley, who is on vacation this week, explained his decision not to run the editorial.
'The Obama piece worked for me because it offered new information (it appeared before his speech); while Senator Obama discussed Senator McCain, he also went into detail about his own plans.'
Shipley continues: 'It would be terrific to have an article from Senator McCain that mirrors Senator Obama's piece. To that end, the article would have to articulate, in concrete terms, how Senator McCain defines victory in Iraq.'
In January 2007, when General David Petraeus took command in Iraq, he called the situation hard but not hopeless. Today, 18 months later, violence has fallen by up to 80% to the lowest levels in four years, and Sunni and Shiite terrorists are reeling from a string of defeats. The situation now is full of hope, but considerable hard work remains to consolidate our fragile gains.
Progress has been due primarily to an increase in the number of troops and a change in their strategy. I was an early advocate of the surge at a time when it had few supporters in Washington. Senator Barack Obama was an equally vocal opponent. "I am not persuaded that 20,000 additional troops in Iraq is going to solve the sectarian violence there, he said on January 10, 2007. In fact, I think it will do the reverse."
Now Senator Obama has been forced to acknowledge that our troops have performed brilliantly in lowering the level of violence. But he still denies that any political progress has resulted.
Perhaps he is unaware that the U.S. Embassy in Baghdad has recently certified that, as one news article put it, Iraq has met all but three of 18 original benchmarks set by Congress last year to measure security, political and economic progress. Even more heartening has been progress thats not measured by the benchmarks. More than 90,000 Iraqis, many of them Sunnis who once fought against the government, have signed up as Sons of Iraq to fight against the terrorists. Nor do they measure Prime Minister Nouri al Malikis new-found willingness to crack down on Shiite extremists in Basra and Sadr Cityactions that have done much to dispel suspicions of sectarianism.
The success of the surge has not changed Senator Obamas determination to pull out all of our combat troops. All that has changed is his rationale. In a New York Times op-ed and a speech this week, he offered his plan for Iraq in advance of his first fact finding trip to that country in more than three years. It consisted of the same old proposal to pull all of our troops out within 16 months. In 2007 he wanted to withdraw because he thought the war was lost. If we had taken his advice, it would have been. Now he wants to withdraw because he thinks Iraqis no longer need our assistance.
To make this point, he mangles the evidence. He makes it sound as if Prime Minister Maliki has endorsed the Obama timetable, when all he has said is that he would like a plan for the eventual withdrawal of U.S. troops at some unspecified point in the future.
Senator Obama is also misleading on the Iraqi military's readiness. The Iraqi Army will be equipped and trained by the middle of next year, but this does not, as Senator Obama suggests, mean that they will then be ready to secure their country without a good deal of help. The Iraqi Air Force, for one, still lags behind, and no modern army can operate without air cover. The Iraqis are also still learning how to conduct planning, logistics, command and control, communications, and other complicated functions needed to support frontline troops.
No one favors a permanent U.S. presence, as Senator Obama charges. A partial withdrawal has already occurred with the departure of five surge brigades, and more withdrawals can take place as the security situation improves. As we draw down in Iraq, we can beef up our presence on other battlefields, such as Afghanistan, without fear of leaving a failed state behind. I have said that I expect to welcome home most of our troops from Iraq by the end of my first term in office, in 2013.
But I have also said that any draw-downs must be based on a realistic assessment of conditions on the ground, not on an artificial timetable crafted for domestic political reasons. This is the crux of my disagreement with Senator Obama.
Senator Obama has said that he would consult our commanders on the ground and Iraqi leaders, but he did no such thing before releasing his plan for Iraq. Perhaps thats because he doesnt want to hear what they have to say. During the course of eight visits to Iraq, I have heard many times from our troops what Major General Jeffrey Hammond, commander of coalition forces in Baghdad, recently said: that leaving based on a timetable would be very dangerous.
The danger is that extremists supported by Al Qaeda and Iran could stage a comeback, as they have in the past when weve had too few troops in Iraq. Senator Obama seems to have learned nothing from recent history. I find it ironic that he is emulating the worst mistake of the Bush administration by waving the Mission Accomplished banner prematurely.
I am also dismayed that he never talks about winning the waronly of ending it. But if we dont win the war, our enemies will. A triumph for the terrorists would be a disaster for us. That is something I will not allow to happen as president. Instead I will continue implementing a proven counterinsurgency strategy not only in Iraq but also in Afghanistan with the goal of creating stable, secure, self-sustaining democratic allies.
Good now more people will see it...
I think NYT’s view is that McCain should talked more about his plan rather than using the editorial to simply attack Obama
Bump for later reading.
NYT is biased against Republicans....WOW, who knew....</sarcasm>
Listening to Rush, on this very subject. Shocked...no. Surprised....nope. Obama is king!
The LEFT used him. The LEFT doesn't play “fair”.
How idiotic can McPain get till he realizes that FACT?
Sounded like he attacked Obama's position, not Obama. How else do you debate?
McPain is as STUPID as they come.
He’s leading the charge of the IMBECILE party.
We are past being the “stupid” party.
I hope the internet is flooded with reprints - who needs the NYT - buncha sissies - who scuttle and run when the going get’s meaty.
Typical rag sheet which passes itself off as nooz these days.
Thank goodness for our electronic freedoms.
Rush talking about this now.
no the NYT's view is that surrender is a plan, winning is not
That’s perfectly fine, I’m just saying the way they see it editorials are supposed to be a bit more substantive. He should have attacked Obama’s position WHILE detailing his own in a bit more detail.
No bias there, nawww.
Bias have been proven over and over. UCLA study, a Harvard study and Pew Research Proved medial left-wing bias.
Now you're talking, Senator McCain, keep saying that till November and Obama will be history.
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