Thursday, October 21, 2004

Nuanced thinker or unprincipled opportunist?

Is anyone surprised that John Kerry supported our approach in Afghanistan when it was pragmatic to be supportive and opposes it now that attacking Bush suits his political needs?

At the height of the battle in Afghanistan, Kerry said he wanted to minimalize the proximity of our troops to danger. Now he criticizes Bush for not involving our troops more.

During the battle Kerry called our approach effective and said, "we should continue to do it that way." Several years later, when it is politically pragmatic to do so, Kerry attacks the conduct of the war.

Here is Kerry in a December 2001 interview with Larry King:

CALLER: Hello. Yes, I would like to ask the panel why they don't use napalm or flamethrowers on those tunnels and caves up there in Afghanistan?

KING: Senator Kerry?...

KERRY: Well, I think it depends on where you are tactically. They may well be doing that at some point in time. But for the moment, what we are doing, I think, is having its impact and it is the best way to protect our troops and sort of minimalize the proximity, if you will. I think we have been doing this pretty effectively and we should continue to do it that way.

And here he is in the 2004 debates (conveying a sentiment he has oft repeated):
When the president had an opportunity to capture or kill Osama bin Laden, he took his focus off of them, outsourced the job to Afghan warlords, and Osama bin Laden escaped.

(Via JustOneMinute.)