Anti-War Candidate, Pro-War Cabinet?

 In Obama

“I don’t want to just end the war; I want to end the mindset that got us into war.”
— Barack Obama
Feb. 19, 2008

Parry is editor of, a reader-supported
investigative webpage. His recent pieces include “The Danger of Keeping
Robert Gates” and “Obama Risks Clinton-Era Mistakes,” which states:
“After a masterful campaign, Barack Obama seems headed toward some
fateful mistakes as he assembles his administration by heeding the
advice of Washington’s Democratic insider community, a collective group
that represents little ‘change you can believe in.’ …”
Parry’s books include “Neck Deep: The Disastrous Presidency of
George W. Bush,” written with two of his sons, Sam and Nat. Parry broke
many of the Iran-Contra stories in the 1980s for the Associated Press
and Newsweek.

Naiman is senior policy analyst and national coordinator at Just
Foreign Policy. He recently wrote the piece “For Middle East Peace,
Dennis Ross Is Not the Change We Seek.”

Professor of politics at the University of San Francisco and a
contributor to Foreign Policy in Focus, Zunes has written numerous
pieces on Obama’s foreign policy. See:

Communications director of the Institute for Public Accuracy,
Husseini said today: “‘Diversity’ is now often being twisted into a
euphemism for Obama including Republicans in his Cabinet. While Obama
repeatedly referenced his 2002 speech against the invasion of Iraq
during the campaign as evidence of the flawed judgment of others, he is
now reportedly considering numerous individuals who supported the
invasion and/or made false claims about Iraq to fill high-level foreign
policy positions.
“In fact, it looks like there will be little diversity on this
critical count. Obama has already chosen Biden, who voted for war and
enabled it in many ways, and Rahm Emanuel, who pushed for it. Meanwhile,
23 senators and 133 House members who voted against the war — and
countless other notable individuals who spoke out against it and the
dubious claims leading to war — are apparently not even being
considered for these crucial positions.”

Background: Here are some claims by named and possible officials in an
Obama administration:

JOSEPH BIDEN: Voted in 2002 to authorize the invasion of Iraq. In his
floor speech at the time he claimed: “[Saddam Hussein] possesses
chemical and biological weapons and is seeking nuclear weapons.” As
then-chair of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, he oversaw
hearings which excluded former UN weapons inspector Scott Ritter and
other individuals who where highly critical of claims regarding Iraq’s
alleged possessions of weapons of mass destruction. See: “Biden: What
Kind of Foreign Policy ‘Experience’?”

HILLARY CLINTON: Voted for the 2002 authorization for the Iraq war. In
her 2002 floor speech, she stated that “intelligence reports show that
Saddam Hussein has worked to rebuild his chemical and biological weapons
stock, his missile delivery capability, and his nuclear program.” (Oct.
10, 2002)

RICHARD HOLBROOKE: Was ambassador to the United Nations toward the end
of the Clinton administration. Claimed shortly after Colin Powell’s
speech to the UN: “It was a masterful job of diplomacy by Colin Powell
and his colleagues, and it does not require a second vote to go to war.
… Saddam is the most dangerous government leader in the world today,
he poses a threat to the region, he could pose a larger threat if he got
weapons of mass destruction deployed, and we have a legitimate right to
take action.” (MSNBC, Jan. 23, 2003)

DENNIS ROSS: Mideast envoy during the Clinton administration, he made
numerous appearances on Fox News Channel during the build-up for the
Iraq invasion pressing for war, for example: “And the fact is that
[Hussein] felt he was able to continue to pursue weapons of mass
destruction, even while all of the resolutions demanding his disarmament
were put into play, and you had inspectors on the ground.” (Fox News
Channel, Dec. 22, 2002)

JOHN KERRY: Voted for the 2002 authorization for the Iraq war. Stated at
the time: “Why is Saddam Hussein attempting to develop nuclear weapons
when most nations don’t even try? … According to intelligence, Iraq
has chemical and biological weapons … Iraq is developing unmanned
aerial vehicles capable of delivering chemical and biological warfare
agents…” (Oct. 9, 2002)

SUSAN RICE: Assistant secretary of state in the Clinton administration.
Before the invasion of Iraq, she claimed: “I think he [then Secretary of
State Colin Powell] has proved that Iraq has these weapons and is hiding
them, and I don’t think many informed people doubted that.” (NPR, Feb.
6, 2003)

BILL RICHARDSON: Was ambassador to the United Nations during the Clinton
administration in the late 1990s during which time he claimed Iraq was
developing weapons of mass destruction: “We think this man is a threat
to the international community, and he threatens a lot of the neighbors
in his region and future generations there with anthrax and VX.” (Feb.
11, 1998)

For more information, contact at the Institute for Public Accuracy:
Sam Husseini, (202) 347-0020; or David Zupan, (541) 484-9167

Recommended Posts
  • suehawks

    A little more than 60 years ago, the people of Germany were disgusted with their leaders, financially broken and newly enthusiastic about an eloquent and dynamic unknown politician who made the scene preaching about a better Germany through drastic change. His speaking skills were polished, he was captivating and he seemingly had all the right answers for the ailing country. The people were so in love with him because after years of abuse they were primed for a new vision a new direction. That of course was Adolf Hitler.

    I was excited when Obama won in a landslide. I thought, finally our country is leaning toward more progressive politics. I voted for Kucinich though, because I knew he was speaking his heart’s truth. And I have been witness to Obama playing the politician’s game of saying he had voted one way on an issue when he actually voted another in 2005 to garner progressive votes. ( But I also knew it wasn’t an election that included Kucinich. I simply voted my heart. Now when I see Obama stacking the deck with the same cards we were left with before we so “progressively” voted for change as a country I worry. My family was held captive by Nazi soldiers, forced to serve them in work canps and in the battlefield. They didn’t suffer the hideous extremes that the Jews suffered, but they were slaves, imprisoned, doing the bidding of an evil army none-the-less. This is not a fantasy projection, but a realization that most of the survivors of the horrors of that time are dead and gone and the rest of us have been educated through a white washed system that does more to crank out good workers who take orders well, than independent thinkers who can direct history with confidence and power.

    I urge you to be ever diligent and do not sway to fears that people will call you racist for not supporting a candidate who just so happens to be black when his actions no longer mirror the words that got him elected. This is not about race, gender, sexuality or class. This time in history is about free people verses a controlled republic. Look out your window and tell me how many cameras for traffic control and street surveillance do you pass on your trips to and from work or to the grocery store. War is the only excuse for controlling the population that the people will ever buy. I’m glad there is a peace movement out there. I’m so proud that you are being the watch dog we need you to be, but I beg you to never lose your steam. Keep pushing and informing the public of the need for real policy change no matter if you are called unpatriotic, or racist or whatever else they will try to defame you with. With six billion people on the planet, 300 million of them US citizen, all we have to do is stand up in a collective mindset and we can direct the winds of change to where we wish to see them flow. But we’ll never be able to do that if we keep quiet. Thank you for speaking the truth!

Leave a Comment

Start typing and press Enter to search