Global Politics

Barack Obama gives foreign policy speech

Obama's campaign billed today's speech as a main foreign policy address and the main topics were the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. Obama repeated his intention to pull a number of U.S. troops out of Iraq within 16 months, relieving a strain on the military and freeing up additional troops for Afghanistan. McCain responded quickly to those comments, and said he agrees with Obama in one sense -- that the war in Afghanistan is not going well. But he faulted Obama for highlighting the strategy in Iraq and Afghanistan before heading off to those countries. In fact there wasn't much new in Obama's speech today, but that wasn't the point says this analyst, who says Obama is trying to bolster his national security credentials. The analyst says Obama's speech succeeded in that it put his Iraq plans into a broader framework for U.S. national security. But where he sees pragmatism, this critic of the Iraq War sees something else. This analyst says his basic message seems to be a premise and is not truly flexible, and he says Afghanistan vs. Iraq is not an either/or situation. But Obama got some encouragement today from the White House of all places, who applauded Obama's plan to visit Iraq.

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