Troop reduction: Who benefits most? Obama or McCain?

Discussion in 'Politics' started by bobbymcgill, Sep 9, 2008.

  1. bobbymcgill

    bobbymcgill Member

    Aug 23, 2008
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    President George W. Bush is expected to announce a gradual redeployment of U.S. military forces from Iraq to an increasingly violent Afghanistan, with 4,500 new troops slated to transfer by January. The president will also announce that as many as 8,000 troops will be returning home without replacement.

    From the standpoint of the voters, which of the two candidates in presidential race is most likely to benefit from this new policy?

    Barack Obama supporters have been quick to claim that Bush is co-opting Obama’s call earlier this year for troop redeployed from Iraq to Afghanistan, where American soldiers are suffering more daily casualties than in Iraq. In reality --much like Al Gore claiming credit for the Internet-- the Obama team had little to do with the formation of this policy initiative which originated from the Joint Chiefs of Staff.

    Yet, in the arena of public perception this will likely play well for Obama who, of the two candidates, has been most vocal about redeployment and withdrawal.

    The White House, perhaps playing politics in the heat of an election battle, might have anticipated this when deciding to announce plans to bring 8,000 troops back home –a reduction which amounts to a mere 5% of the current troop level of 146,000.

    The downside for the Obama is that recent success in Iraq --of which even he himself has acknowledged-- remove a primary talking point in his drive to the presidency --a gradual withdrawal of forces from Iraq.

    John McCain, a strong supporter of the Iraq “surge” which added 30,000 troops to the Iraq conflict last year and is credited with the reduction in American and civilian causalities, would do well to highlight the fact that Obama opposed the surge, thus further calling into question Obama’s strengths in major foreign policy decisions –an issue he sought to rectify with the choice of Joe Biden for his VP.

    While there is no question that both candidates will attempt to spin this in their favor, the question remains: who will benefit most in the eyes of the American public?

    Bobby McGill
    Idle Wordship- News and Commentary

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