OK, you aren’t buying the story that Obama is a “terrorists’ pal” or a “elections riggers’ pal”. You don’t even seem to care that his middle name is Hussein and that “Obama” rhymes with “Osama” (both telltale signs of a dangerous, un-American terrorist).
But what if I told you that voting for Obama would increase (and not decrease, as you may naively believe) the chance of war with Iran? Ah, I bet that grabbed your attention.
But wait, didn’t Obama say that the was willing to talk to Iranian leaders, and not bomb them? Didn’t McCain showed almost an eagerness to confront them?
That’s true, but here’s the catch: Obama, being the girlie liberal that he is, might never have the guts to actually launch military attacks on Iran, as McCain gladly would. But Bush, or Israel, could.
Confronted with the prospect of a whinny liberal like Obama taking his place at the White House, Bush could feel tempted to launch military strikes in the waning days of his Presidency. On the other hand, if McCain were to be elected, Bush would feel less tempted to embark on this final folly, since he could rest assured that macho McCain would be willing to do the same at any time. A similar train of thought would be followed by Israeli leadership.
So, which one would you choose: Obama=War or McCain=No War? I bet that kept you thinking, right?
I know this argument is more surreal than many would think possible, but that’s what archconservative Bill Kristol, of all people, put forward last Sunday. Having labeled the McCain campaign tactics “stupid”, Kristol proposes the way forward: scare them in a more effective way.
As Kristol sees it, the problem isn’t that McCain has embarked on a smear campaign through an array of negative ads. The problem is they’re simply not working. Despite all of McCain innuendoes and Palin winks and nods, Obama keeps moving ahead on the polls. So it’s time for a change in tactics. Well, sort of.
If your scare campaign isn’t working, what do you need to do? Why, scare them more, that’s what you need. So you brandish your stick and say “vote McCain or Iran gets it”.
Nevermind that McCain recently sang “bomb, bomb, bomb Iran” in an election rally. Nevermind also Palin’s view that the US shouldn’t “second guess” Israeli policy towards Iran, thus providing a tacit endorsement for military action.
Nevermind, finally, that the economic turmoil all but invalidates any prospect of the US embarking on a new military adventure anytime soon. Bush might disregard the consequences, but there’s some sane people around him, not least the top brass in the military.
All you need to do is ignore reality and charge ahead with some preposterous, attention-grabbing thesis that will short-circuit the proceedings of rational thought. That’s the sort of shock and awe tactics that, hopefully, will turn white into black and black into white, herding the terrified voters into McCain’s military arms.
Kristol, after all, is an expert on this matter of ignoring reality in order to build a scary narrative. He was one of the main promoters of the Iraq War. And he still hasn’t given up on Iran.