If we had a “Most Offensive Quote of the Day” every day, Joe Biden would probably come to own the prize. But even by the senator’s lofty standards of chronic obtuseness, he outdid himself this afternoon:“If John (McCain) wants to know where the bad guys live, come back with me to Afghanistan. We know where they reside. And it's not in Iraq.”
I know Democrats get a certain tingling in their thighs when their politicos talk butch in such a manner. Still, this comment is so over the top, somewhere in America Wesley Clark is probably feeling much better about his public relations acumen. What’s more, Biden’s comment turns what ought to be a serious conversation about two vital foreign theatres into a juvenile schoolyard taunt.
Barnett isn't upset that this was unfair or untrue--Barnett is upset because this is the accurate observation of a man who knows what he's talking about and has the facts on his side. Now, of course there are "bad guys" in Iraq. They're not the "bad guys" who attacked America though, are they? There are "bad guys" in Baltimore--when do we invade? There are "bad guys" in Myanmar--are we just going to sanction them or do we invade and bog down several dozen combat brigades? Leave it to a childish wingnut to think his phony outrage is enough to make a difference in an argument beyond his comprehension.
The people who gave aid and comfort and planned and carried out the attacks on 9/11 and on targets throughout the world ARE in Afghanistan and in Pakistan. They never were in Iraq. What is in Iraq are a completely different group of people who now oppose us and want to kill us. And the Bush Administration went into Iraq and caused us to lose focus, lose our military, and lose our way. They committed the greatest tactical and foreign policy blunder in the history of this nation.
Senator Biden is guilty of articulating that fact, nothing more.
And as more and more Americans wake up to that fact, the relevance of people like Barnett dissipates into nothing.