Yesterday I criticised Barack Obama (and John McCain) for misidentifying the enemy the U.S. and its allies are confronting in Afghanistan:
Neither candidate has thus far shown any understanding of the social, cultural and geopolitical realities of the battlefields of Afghanistan and its neighbours. Neither seems to acknowledge that their foe — and ours — is not terrorism but what causes it: poverty, crime, inequality, oppression, mismanagement, greed, corruption, and hunger.
As it turns out, there’s a reason for this. According to the New York Times, Obama’s foreign policy team, “a tight-knit group of aides supported by a huge 300-person foreign policy campaign bureaucracy”, is run not by fresh hands but by the same people who conducted Bill Clinton’s lacklustre foreign policy. Instead of taking potshots at Obama’s voting record and national security credentials, the McCain campaign should ask this: does the junior senator seriously think that Anthony Lake, Susan Rice, Madeleine Albright and Warren Christopher are the right people to have around when trying to tackle the enormous and complicated challenges the U.S. now faces?