McCain's Deeply Concerned About Yet Another Nonexistent Territory

What's next for the man with the supposed foreign policy experience? A comprehensive approach towards Narnia?

Remember, the entire premise of John McCain’s campaign pitch is that he has an unrivaled expertise in foreign policy.

For those of you who can’t watch clips online, McCain appeared on ABC’s “Good Morning America” a few hours ago, and Diane Sawyer asked if he believed “the situation in Afghanistan is precarious and urgent.” McCain, carefully avoiding Sawyer’s adjectives, responded, “It’s a serious situation, but there’s a lot of things we need to do. We have a lot of work to do and I’m afraid that it’s a very hard struggle, particularly given the situation on the Iraq-Pakistan border.”

And in apparent attempt to win the electoral votes of Schmuck Town, McCain added, “And I would not announce that I’m going to attack Pakistan, as Sen. Obama did when he was during [sic] his campaign.”

Watching McCain humiliate himself like this is just painful. For one thing, Iraq and Pakistan don’t share a border. They’re not even especially close — Iraq and Pakistan are separated by 1,500 miles and the country of Iran.

For another, Obama did not “announce” that he’s going to “attack” Pakistan. Obama said he would authorize pursuit against high-value terrorist targets if targets slipped into areas of Pakistan where Musharraf has limited control. If John McCain seriously wants to tell voters that he would not pursue terrorists in this area, perhaps he should stop lying and start acknowledging the weakness of his counter-terrorism policy.

Regardless, the comments reflect a larger problem for McCain and his surprisingly incoherent perspective on the basics of foreign policy.
Steve Benen is a freelance writer/researcher and creator of The Carpetbagger Report. In addition, he is the lead editor of's Blog Report, and has been a contributor to Talking Points Memo, Washington Monthly, Crooks & Liars, The American Prospect, and the Guardian.
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Election 2018