Sunday, October 07, 2007

Hillary Clinton's Reality Based Foreign Policy

Some commentators on the right, among them detested neo-cons, are referring to Hillary Clinton’s foreign policy posture – only a president actually makes foreign policy – as “reality based.”

This is bad news for the bad news bears at DailyKos and other outposts of progressive aversion.

Hillary Clinton has brought into her campaign Michael O'Hanlon, the co-author of “A War We Just Might Win,” the New York Times piece that changed opinion on the war within the reality based community.

O’Hanlon pointed out in his piece that the surge in Iraq was having some positive effects. The surge, the ham-fisted and counterproductive methods of jihadists in places they formerly occupied and perhaps a weariness among Americans with the “can’t do” attitude of the war resistors all have played a role in the reduction of violence in Iraq in September.

Hillary Clinton, when pressed, put it this way when she spoke in mid-September at the Veterans of Foreign Wars 108th annual convention in Kansas City : The surge is working.

''It's working,” she said. “We're just years too late in changing our tactics...We can't ever let that happen again. We can't be fighting the last war. We have to keep preparing to fight the new war.'' And then she did the usual Clinton split: “…the best way of honoring their [those currently serving in Iraq] service is by beginning to bring them home and making sure that when they come home, that we have everything ready for them.”

That last statement may have confused the veterans, but it was plain common sense to political strategists who reason that one cannot become president by appealing solely to those who live and have their being on the edges of the political spectrum.
The notion that the surge was working predictably does not endear Hillary Clinton to the adepts at DailyKos and, which recently suffered a public relations failure over the question of General David Petraeus’ honor.

One of the reasons Hillary may not be afraid of the kossacks is that they may not be quite as powerful or influential as advertised by head kossak Markos Moulitsas.

Patrick Ruffini on his own blog examined traffic numbers at DailyKos and found they were inflated by about 60%.

But in the end, reality itself will push the Democrats, all but the frothing kossaks and perhaps presidential aspirant Sen. Chris Dodd, to the center. The jihadists themselves are still determining the course of American foreign policy, and they have not given up on destroying New York. Hillary Clinton is a senator in New York.

Place matters.
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