July 2nd, 2008
04:30 PM ET
6 years ago

McCain had advance knowledge of Colombian raid

ON BOARD THE MCCAIN CAMPAIGN PLANE, En route to Mexico City (CNN) - After a scheduled meeting between John McCain and Colombian President Alvaro Uribe Tuesday, the presumptive Republican nominee was briefed on the upcoming hostage rescue raid carried out Wednesday.

As he left Colombia Wednesday afternoon, McCain learned that raid had been successfully completed, and congratulated Uribe by phone.

Senators Joe Lieberman and Lindsey Graham, both traveling with McCain, were also briefed. Lieberman said McCain's advance knowledge of the raid signals a vote of confidence by foreign leaders.

UPDATE: John McCain released a statement on the operation later Wednesday afternoon. (Full statement after the jump)

“Today, I spoke by phone to President Uribe. He told me some of the details of the dramatic rescue of the people who were held hostage. Three Americans are now free and Ingrid Betancourt is now in good condition. I’m pleased with the success of this very high-risk operation. Sometimes in the past, the FARC has killed the hostages rather than let them be rescued.

“So I congratulate President Uribe, the military and the nation of Colombia. It is great news. Now we must renew our efforts to free all of the other innocent people held hostage. With regard to the three Americans and Ingrid Betancourt - they had been held many years, as many as six years.

“Last night, President Uribe and the defense minister did brief us that the operation was going to take place today.”


Filed under: John McCain
soundoff (249 Responses)
  1. Skip

    I'd be more interested to know the details of the raid and less about what some politician thought about it. Of course it's a good thing, genius! How did it go down? Is this news?

    July 2, 2008 08:22 pm at 8:22 pm |
  2. FLORIDA MAN

    MCCAIN had nothing to do with this AT ALL!! come on don't make these peoples suffering something he can try and use for politics this is a shame he came out with a statment like he was prevey to some info ans if he was president or he had intelligence so thats why he was there. HE WAS THERE TO PROMOTE FREE TRADE!!! TO FIND A WAY FOR SOME MORE OF OUR JOBS TO LEAVE THE COUNTRY. REMEBER WHEN HE TOLD THE PEOPLE OF MICHIGAN THE JOBS WERE NEVER COMING BACK THERE? WELL NOW YOU KNOW WHY! HE KNEW IT ALL THE WHILE ITS A SHAME WHAT REPUBLICAINS WILL DO TO BE IN POWER I'M TELLING YOU KNOW THAT THEY KNEW THAT MCCAIN WAS GOING OVER THERE AND THEY TOLD COLUMBIAN OFFICAILS TO TO THIS RAID WHILE HE WAS THERE TO MAKE HIM LOOK GOOD PEOPLE WAKE UP AND THINK ABOUT THIS IT WAS JUST REPORTED ON HERE ON CNN THAT THE UNITED STATES GAVE THEM THE INFO ON WHERE THE HOSTAGES WERE AT!! THIS IS A SHAME

    July 2, 2008 08:25 pm at 8:25 pm |
  3. Steve, VA

    Even as a McCain supporter, I'm uncomfortable with what seems to be the campaign trying to gain political advantage from what these hostages have gone through for years.

    July 2, 2008 08:26 pm at 8:26 pm |
  4. Michigan Democrat

    Thank You , Sen. John McCain , You Are Truly Amazing !!!!

    God Bless You Sir ,

    July 2, 2008 08:26 pm at 8:26 pm |
  5. William, from Cali!

    CNN: Moderate this for the Republicans; this kinda stuff, won't get it done, in Nov's. election. Joe, this means "did-a-lee-squat"; what "foreign leaders" are you talking about?

    July 2, 2008 08:27 pm at 8:27 pm |
  6. dave

    I find it incredible that in your headlines news article about the FARC Hostage rescue you blatantly omitted the role Senator McCain played in this whole endeavor.

    Nobama 08!

    July 2, 2008 08:29 pm at 8:29 pm |
  7. derrick

    Are Americans so stupid?

    I'm sure McCain will be in Pakistan or Afghanistan when Osama bin Laden is captured or killed.

    Wake up America.

    July 2, 2008 08:29 pm at 8:29 pm |
  8. ABrown

    So are we suppose to believe McCain was instrumental in the rescue ? Give me a break!

    July 2, 2008 08:29 pm at 8:29 pm |
  9. Bendo

    have you noticed how the timing of this so called raid and it came as a complete surprise by the rebels at the same time timed nicely with JM visit, staged??? um you figure it out!

    July 2, 2008 08:30 pm at 8:30 pm |
  10. Clinton, no, wait, McCain Supporter

    The Columbians shared this with McCain because they know who he is and they TRUST him with the information. Unlike BO, McCain can actually handle situations this delicate and dangerous operation. Of course, the other person the Columbians could have trusted in such a situation would be Hillary Clinton.

    I can't imagine they would take a chance telling such things to BO, who knows what he'd make of it – probably couldn't keep his mouth shut (always a problem with BO) and no one who held the lives of 7 people in his hands would be so foolish as to trust this used car salesman.

    July 2, 2008 08:32 pm at 8:32 pm |
  11. Eric

    But wait the Columbian's carried/planned the raid independently, this has nothing to do with McCain's experience or judgement so this is important why? It's just stupid, McCain should stay in America because he's looking clueless right now.

    July 2, 2008 08:33 pm at 8:33 pm |
  12. Jason of Indianapolis

    Yeah and this proves???? I'll tell ya what it proves, these foreign governments, like the ones Mccain just visited , love NAFTA. And they would say or do anything to keep it. folks we need to change Nafta, we can no longer trade GOLD FOR STRAY INTHESE UNAMERICAN TRADE DEALS. OBAMA 08

    July 2, 2008 08:34 pm at 8:34 pm |
  13. Jay from NM

    Before McCain comes up with coments or reaction he should count to ten. He has a quick temper and it will back fire on him.

    July 2, 2008 08:38 pm at 8:38 pm |
  14. Neal

    so?

    July 2, 2008 08:39 pm at 8:39 pm |
  15. aware

    McCain 08 – the only wise choice! :)

    July 2, 2008 08:39 pm at 8:39 pm |
  16. Philip

    This should only speak well of one foreign president's confidence in McCain; how many others have the same confidence, we don't know. But it's too far-fetched - and even absurd - that McCain's visit was allegedly scheduled to coincide with his presence in Colombia, as "brian" thinks. Let's make some sense here...

    July 2, 2008 08:39 pm at 8:39 pm |
  17. hillaryclinton4barackobama

    Yep.. Another Lobbyist's Mission Accomplished ... Did anyone say Charlie Black ?? Anyone ? Anyone ?

    July 2, 2008 08:40 pm at 8:40 pm |
  18. mike

    mccain has no knowledge about anything so please please please mccain quit!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    July 2, 2008 08:44 pm at 8:44 pm |
  19. Shane

    WHO is paying for these trips that McCain takes? US! The taxpayers! It kills me that these candidates have actual JOBS that they are being paid for all year, yet they aren't doing these jobs, they are campaigning for president. On top of this, my guess is that they are not using campaign funds for these trips.. What about McCain's trips to Canada and the middle east. Isn't there enough going on in our own country! McCain doesn't even seem to get the struggles that America faces. How could he-living the way he and his wife do......

    Also, Lieberman is a traitor! He should be formally kicked out of the Democratic party. He is NOT a democrat......

    July 2, 2008 08:46 pm at 8:46 pm |
  20. Connie

    Since all three were briefed does that mean any one of them can be prez. ? And I thought John McBush just went down to Columbia to give more of our jobs away.Remember when he was in Michigan and told them there jobs were never coming back, he knows he visited our jobs in Canada and now in Columbia and Mexico. I don't know about him being president can we afford to have Liberman and Graham follow him around to keep him straight . That's kind of like the blind leading the blind. Barack Hussein Obama 08

    Connie"hussein"Sturgeon from Indiana

    July 2, 2008 08:48 pm at 8:48 pm |
  21. teri

    What does Lieberman know? All he cares about this nation is for all of us to sacrifice our childrens' lives in the Middle East so Israel can guard its nukes. I wish the blubberer would pack his bags and move back to Israel. Maybe, he will take his pal McWar with him.

    July 2, 2008 08:50 pm at 8:50 pm |
  22. MD in GA

    This looks and sounds fishy to me... Too convenient...

    July 2, 2008 08:54 pm at 8:54 pm |
  23. Richard

    Who better than to get advice from? Certainly they would not get advice from Obama.

    July 2, 2008 08:54 pm at 8:54 pm |
  24. Dwayne L, OH

    He's sneaky isn't he?

    July 2, 2008 08:55 pm at 8:55 pm |
  25. brewme

    You have to understand that foreign leaders have respect for McCain. They don't have the same respect for the inexperienced Obama. When this country embraces this same concept this election will be will go decidedly for the best candidate, John McCain!

    July 2, 2008 08:57 pm at 8:57 pm |
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