Friday, September 05, 2008

Obama on O'Reilly

As some of you may have seen, Barack Obama appeared on the O'Reilly factor last night to fulfill a promise to O'Rielly that they would have an interview. The first half (approx. 7 min) of the interview was aired and the rest will be shown throughout the next few episodes.

The interview began, as you would assume, with a mature and respectful greeting between both Obama and O'Reilly. Quickly, the interview turned towards the issues, beginning with "terrorism."

At first, O'Reilly and Obama seem to be on the same page...they agree that Al Qaeda and the Taliban are terrorist groups; they also agree that Iran is a prospective threat and that it is unacceptable for them to have control of nuclear weapons. It is not until the two begin discussing the path which the US should take towards Iran that things go south.

As Obama has repeatedly said,

It's sufficient to say I would not take the military option off the table and that I will never hesitate to use our military force in order to protect the homeland and United States interests.But where I disagree with you is the notion that we've exhausted every other resource.

With this being said, O'Reilly quickly retaliated by claiming, "Maybe. But that's just all hypothetical." Hearing this, I quickly yelled at the screen, nearly the exact words which Obama used to respond,...
"EVERYTHING IS HYPOTHETICAL." This meaning that anyone could say, "what if diplomacy doesn't work and Iran tries to invade the US" or "what if we use military force and the rest of the world disagrees with us, and this eventually leads to a very secluded, weakened, and allyless US." The point is, is that anyone can make up a situation which would counteract any particular solution to said situation.

Going forward, as one would expect, the interview turned towards our current situation in Iraq. Surprisingly, O'Reilly admitted that "
I think history will show it's the wrong battlefield, okay. And I think that you were perspicacious in your original assessment of the battlefield." (I would be lying if I said my jaw didn't literally dropped when I heard that.) To hear O'Reilly, as I am sure you all know Bill O'Reilly's stance on the war, say that Obama was correct in his original assessment of the prospect of a continuous campaign in Iraq really speaks to his character...well, it did...until I heard the rest of the interview.

When the surge is brought up, Obama, like a civilized candidate, explained that he thought that the surge had done well in lowering the violence and helping to extinguish Al Qaeda's presence. The conversation continues and...well, here is a segment of the interview which I think sums up how Bill O'Reilly was going to act for the rest of the interview:

SEN. OBAMA: Well, look --

MR. O'REILLY: No, no, no, no.

SEN. OBAMA: No, no, no, no, no, no, no.

MR. O'REILLY: If it were up to you, there wouldn't have been a surge.

SEN. OBAMA: No, no, no, no. Hold on.

MR. O'REILLY: You and Joe Biden -- no surge.

What Obama was trying to explain, was that when voting for the surge you would of had to taken into account the way the war had been managed by the administration thus far...needless to say, it has not been well. Keeping this in mind, a vote in favor of the same administration would have seemed like national me at least.

Also, sure we have lowered the violence, but the Iraqi people still depend on the US; and we are still spending money. If we continue to be the crutch for Iraq and its government...their legs may never heal to allow them to stand on their own.

The interview ended with a pretty heated discussion about potential military force against Pakistan (it ended pretty abruptly, given that only half of the interview was shown last night.)

To give a quick overview of my own thoughts on the interview. I thought it was brave of Obama to go on such a notoriously right wing show, where O'Reilly is known for badgering people who are not of his political persuasion. And, from where I am sitting, it seemed like Obama really blew O'Reilly out of the water.

If you want to check out the interview for yourself, go to the link below:

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