August 27, 2003

Howard Dean Surprises

Interesting article in the Washington Post about Howard Dean.

The challenge for Dean now is to transition from champion of the antiwar, anti-Bush left to electable Democrat without losing his steam and solid liberal base, according to Democratic strategists.
That will be a challenge, since he's already alienated me and a whole lot of other Democrats. And making the right noises isn't enough. He needs to be genuine. I'll see right through him if he is not.
This transition is no easy task for the most outspoken critic of the Iraqi war...
No kidding.

However.

Dean insisted he is tougher than Bush on national defense, even if he opposed the war in Iraq. He said he supported the Persian Gulf War, the attack on Afghanistan and, unlike Bush, wants to confront Saudi Arabia over its ties to terrorist groups. "Our oil money goes to the Saudis, where it is recycled and some of it is recycled to Hamas and two fundamentalist schools which teach small children to hate Americans, Christians and Jews," Dean said. "This president will not confront the Saudis."
Okay.

I can give Bush some slack on the Saudis. For a while.

We were stuck with troops and a base on their soil. We needed to move the base and get the troops out. And Saddam Hussein's ongoing threat to the Saudi Arabia's oil fields made that impossible.

Now we can move. And we are moving.

Howard Dean needs to acknowledge this. Moving our troops from Saudi to Iraq is what makes Dean's sought for confrontation possible.

President Bush must acknowledge this, too. He can only put this off for so long. Bush may have a plan. If so he'd better start talking.

Also, I want to hear what Dean would actually do about Saudi Arabia. Bad-mouthing the House of Saud isn't good enough.

If his answer is a good one, and if Bush keeps playing the role of their lawyer, Howard Dean will keep me on my toes.

Come on, Howard. I'm listening. Wow me. Show me what you got.

Posted by Michael J. Totten at August 27, 2003 1:14 AM
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Winner, The 2008 Weblog Awards, Best Middle East or Africa Blog

Winner, The 2007 Weblog Awards, Best Middle East or Africa Blog

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