I'm old enough to remember a time when it would have been unthinkable for a presidential aspirant to deliberately undermine the conduct of a military action abroad by the man he hoped to succeed in the White House.
In fact, I'm old enough to remember a time such an unthinkable action would be punishable by a treason charge.
Oh, how I long for the good old days.
Such actions are no longer unthinkable – and neither is there any threat of prosecution. And that's probably why Barack Obama will get away with this arrogant, despicable, un-American, treacherous act.
In case you missed it, the Obama campaign has issued an angry denial of a report by respected commentator Amir Taheri that claimed the presidential candidate had urged Iraqi officials not to accept any U.S. troop withdrawal plan until a new administration is sworn in next year.
However, in making the hysterical denial, Obama's spokeswoman, Wendy Morigi, confirmed the facts of Taheri's report. She said her boss told Iraqi leaders they should not rush through a "Strategic Framework Agreement" governing the future of U.S. troops until after President Bush leaves office.
Perhaps Obama sees a distinction between Taheri's report and what appears to be an official confirmation of it by his campaign. I don't think most impartial observers will.
According to Iraqi Foreign Minister Hoshyar Zebari, Obama "asked why we were not prepared to delay an agreement until after the U.S. elections and the formation of a new administration."
If you have any doubts about the truth of what Zebari says, maybe you will accept Obama's own words, spoken to the New York Times last June 16. Here is his recollection, in the so-called "newspaper of record," of his meeting with Zebari: "My concern is that the Bush administration, in a weakened state politically, ends up trying to rush an agreement that in some ways might be binding to the next administration, whether it's my administration or Senator McCain's administration. The foreign minister agreed that the next administration should not be bound by an agreement that's currently made."
What do we have here?
No. 1: We have a candidate who launched his campaign for the presidency saying he was the anti-war candidate. He was the one demanding our military forces come home immediately. In fact, just last year he told an audience at a university in Iowa: "The best way to protect our security and to pressure Iraq's leaders to resolve their civil war is to immediately begin to remove our combat troops – not in six months or one year – now." What happened in the intervening six months to persuade Obama to use his political position to delay withdrawals of U.S. military personnel? How is it that the anti-war candidate became a diplomatic obstacle to pulling out our soldiers from a war already won? What does Code Pink think about this?
No. 2: Why would Obama want to delay the plan for withdrawal of troops from Iraq? Could it be what Iraqi President Jalal Talabani suspects – that Obama, as Taheri explains, "might be tempted to appropriate the victory that America has already won in Iraq by claiming that his intervention transformed failure into success"?
No. 3: Haven't laws clearly been violated here? If not, do we need to draft new legislation to ensure that politicians don't actively interfere in diplomatic affairs that can cost the lives of Americans and cause U.S. military personnel to serve overseas longer than necessary?
No. 4: Whatever happened to the old notion that American politics stopped at the water's edge? Is that a silly, quaint idea that died with the emergence of no-class, low-life presidents like Jimmy Carter and Bill Clinton?
I feel like prosecution is in order.
America needs to rediscover the treason laws.
It's time for this kind of treachery to be exposed and called what it is.
"Peacenik" Obama is playing with the lives of brave and precious U.S. military personnel in Iraq.
He'll say anything and do anything to achieve power – including put American lives at risk.
This man should be behind bars – not vying for the highest office in the land.