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Tuesday, June 10, 2008


Obama's Vice-President

There's a story out today headlined "Obama veep vetting team looks at retired military." Why is he doing that? According to the AP writer,
A running mate from the military ranks could help address concerns that Obama lacks foreign policy experience, having served just three years in the Senate. It could also provide a counterpoint to the military bonafides of the Republican ticket, which will be led by Vietnam war hero John McCain.
But "addressing concerns" and "providing a counterpoint" to McCain isn't what Obama himself said about why a military person would be right at the top of this list; he had much more substantive reasons (transcript available, as far as I know, only on this site):
"I would want somebody with competence in areas where I am weaker. The obvious would be military experience. I'm very confident about serving as Commander-in-Chief in terms of my judgments in terms of what our strategic interests are, and so that's the area that I'd be concerned about, but I think having somebody who intimately understood some of the more tactical issues surrounding military deployments, or, conversely, also understands the bureaucracy of the Pentagon, because moving that and changing that can be a very difficult thing."
It isn't "image" or "perception" that Obama is concerned about; it's the very real desire to fight wars more effectively.

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