WASHINGTON - Barack Obama's campaign scrubbed his presidential Web site over the weekend to remove criticism of the U.S. troop "surge" in Iraq, the Daily News has learned.
The presumed Democratic nominee replaced his Iraq issue Web page, which had described the surge as a "problem" that had barely reduced violence.
The News reported Sunday that insurgent attacks have fallen to the fewest since March 2004.
Obama's campaign posted a new Iraq plan Sunday night, which cites an "improved security situation" paid for with the blood of U.S. troops since the surge began in February 2007.
It praises G.I.s' "hard work, improved counterinsurgency tactics and enormous sacrifice."
Campaign aide Wendy Morigi said Obama is "not softening his criticism of the surge. We regularly update the Web site to reflect changes in current events."
GOP rival John McCain zinged Obama as a flip-flopper. "The major point here is that Sen. Obama refuses to acknowledge that he was wrong," said McCain, adding that Obama "refuses to acknowledge that it [the surge] is succeeding."
And, thanks to the magic of the internets and all those tubes, here's the original plan:
THE SURGE IS NOT WORKING
"The stated purpose of the surge was to enable Iraq's political leaders to reconcile. They have not done so. . . .
Our troops fight and die in the 120 degree heat to give Iraq's leaders space to agree, but they are not filling it. .
. . The bar for success is so low that it is almost buried in the sand."
Iraqi Government Not Stepping Up: The goal of the troop surge was to create space for Iraq’s political leaders to reach agreement to end Iraq’s civil war. In January 2007, President Bush said the goal of the surge was to contain violence so that "Iraqis will gain confidence in their leaders, and the government will have the breathing space it needs to make progress in other critical areas." Since then, more than 700 American troops have died, but the Iraqi government has not stepped up. In early September, the United States Government Accountability Office found the Iraqi government has not enacted legislation to meet critical benchmarks on de-Ba'athification, oil revenue sharing, provincial elections, amnesty, and militia disarmament that are key tobeginning national reconciliation.
Uneven Gains Not Sustainable Without Iraqi Action: At great cost, our troops have helped reduce violence in some areas of Baghdad, but only when measured against the record levels of violence in late 2006 and early 2007. As The New York Times reported in a wide-ranging investigation, violence has decreased in certain neighborhoods only because they have become more ethnically homogenous as minority groups have fled. Most importantly, as a commission headed by General Jim Jones reported, the Iraqi Security Forces must take responsibility for holding the security gains created by the surge, but they are not doing so.
Anbar Province Success Not Related to Surge: The reduced violence in Anbar Province is the result of cooperation between American forces and Sunni tribes, which started more than 18 months ago, long before the surge. The province is overwhelmingly Sunni, and the tribal leaders there made a political decision to turn against al Qaeda. This does not demonstrate the success of the surge; it demonstrates that the solutions in Iraq are political, not military.
This guy is making John Kerry look as flexible as a sheet of plywood. How long before the liberal nutcases against Bush (LNAB) start to eat Obama.