September 9th, 2008
12:41 PM ET
6 years ago

Obama lukewarm on Iraq drawdown announcement

President Bush announced that he plans to withdraw 8,000 U.S. troops from Iraq by February, 2009 .
President Bush announced that he plans to withdraw 8,000 U.S. troops from Iraq by February, 2009 .

RIVERSIDE, Ohio (CNN) – Senator Barack Obama said Tuesday the Bush administration’s announcement it was bringing some U.S. troops home fell short, calling it a “modest” step that indicated no real change in policy.

“At this point what it appears is the next president will inherit a status quo that is still unstable, Obama told reporters at a high school outside Dayton. “And what’s going to be required is a comprehensive strategy, and that’s what I’ve been offering for the last two years.

“We should have a comprehensive strategy for bringing this war to a close and not what we heard from president today, which is essentially some tinkering around the edges and kicking the can down the road to the next president.”

Obama gave lukewarm praise to the president’s announcement that more U.S. troops will be sent to Afghanistan, something the Democratic Party’s presidential nominee routinely calls for in his stump speech.

“I am glad that the President is moving in the direction of the policy that I have advocated for years. But the most substantial increase will come when an additional Army brigade is deployed five months from now – in February, after the President has left office. His plan comes up short – it is not enough troops, and not enough resources, with not enough urgency,” he said.

The Democratic nominee also continued his regular practice of linking John McCain with President Bush on foreign policy.

“Last week, we heard a lot of tough talk in St. Paul, but we didn’t hear much about the Bush-McCain record,” he said. “Because seven years after 9/11, we are still fighting a war without end in Iraq and we still haven’t taken out the terrorists responsible for 9/11. That’s where George Bush and John McCain’s judgment has gotten us."


Filed under: Candidate Barack Obama
soundoff (275 Responses)
  1. Bush is An Idiot

    I would be lukewarm too, because the directives came from Bush, the WORST PRESIDENT IN MODERN HISTORY.

    Enough.

    Obama/Biden 08

    September 9, 2008 01:06 pm at 1:06 pm |
  2. Hello!!!!

    He means the policy he took from Hillary. Just like most of the policies he took from Hillary.

    September 9, 2008 01:08 pm at 1:08 pm |
  3. Republicans Hate America

    I want to know why this is not surrender when the republicans draw troops down. Obama once again is correct as always. you inbreeds stay with McPhony and Gidget i will vote for a real leader.

    September 9, 2008 01:08 pm at 1:08 pm |
  4. KiloWhiskey - Denver

    What's the matter...thunder gone....poor Barack. His best strategy seems to be adopting McCain's.

    September 9, 2008 01:09 pm at 1:09 pm |
  5. Bush is the Village Idiot

    You have to be lukewarm when any information comes out of the Bush White House. Especially since his "brain" Karl-The-Snake-Rove is helping the McCain campaign right now.

    So Barack is right, when the Village Idiot says one thing, you need to be lukewarm. And speaking of idiots, the country is about to elect another in John McSame and his mascot Pailin. More of the same old thing.

    Obama/Biden 08

    September 9, 2008 01:09 pm at 1:09 pm |
  6. who cares what you say

    You wont be in office anyway

    September 9, 2008 01:09 pm at 1:09 pm |
  7. Justin, ny

    obama has been right all along – bush is only beginning to realize – but its too late. as an independent voter in NYC I can't WAIT for obama to take office so we can ACTUALLY go after the people that killed so many of my/our friends and loved ones. the bush administration has been a complete and utter disgrace.

    September 9, 2008 01:11 pm at 1:11 pm |
  8. proud army and navy mom

    Dont hate Obama......Listen your campaign is over, sorry you lost your rock star staus so soon. Everyone knows you are unqualified to be POTUS when your only accomplishment is "Community Organizer".

    It was a nice try the whole "Change" and "Hope" thing. however why dont you try again in 2016 when your resume doesnt resemble that of a college summer hire.

    Thanks

    September 9, 2008 01:11 pm at 1:11 pm |
  9. Joe Regis

    Common sense movement to end the war in Iraq, fix the economy and repair America image in the world.

    Yes we can.

    Obama/Biden/ 08/12.

    September 9, 2008 01:11 pm at 1:11 pm |
  10. NoGOP

    We should just go ahead and vote right now, because no one is going to change their minds. We are all entrenched in, and influenced by, our own biases – so as the old saying goes... "you can't teach an old dog new tricks," we cannot change our minds.

    September 9, 2008 01:13 pm at 1:13 pm |
  11. Independent

    How about your judgment Obama? You have none to prove!

    September 9, 2008 01:13 pm at 1:13 pm |
  12. OBAMA-LUKEWARM..?

    When it comes to making real decision..Obama votes present and or

    runs with cold feet........the real choice come November 4, 2008 is:

    ::::::::::McCain/Palin:::::::::the real deal..................................!!!

    September 9, 2008 01:14 pm at 1:14 pm |
  13. Heather, Cleveland, OH

    Dear John and Sarah,
    Thanks, but no thanks. I'm going with someone with clear ideas on how to better improve our national security and restore our US military to it's former glory. Concentrate our troops where they belong and stop spreading them so thin in your wars for resources (OIL – you said it yourself) that Russia is laughing at our demands for them to leave Georgia (no, Sarah, the country of Georgia, not the state).

    Love,
    A USAF Vet from the Buckeye State
    Now a proud member of Vets for Obama

    September 9, 2008 01:15 pm at 1:15 pm |
  14. don

    just think the u.s is toying in a wrong direction. this lady is lying pilin or what ever you call her, and the american people are happy about this,,,,,,,,,,, this is sick, i just feel sorry for the united states. i bet you guys will be the joke of the world if mcsame wins.
    God help the u.s.a

    September 9, 2008 01:15 pm at 1:15 pm |
  15. John from VA

    I love the alleged by partisan support that Senator Barack claims to have. However, even on the most relevant issue of today (National Security) he refuses to praise that the war in Iraq is drawing to a close.

    You certainly sound more concerned about your campaign that you do the real issues. Good Luck in November, you will certainly need it.

    McCain/Palin 2016

    September 9, 2008 01:15 pm at 1:15 pm |
  16. TAYO, NY

    YES! BUSH McCAIN BAD JUDGMENT GOT US INTO THIS MESS CALLED IRAQ AND IT IS NOW LEFT FOR THE NEXT PRESIDENT TO TAKE CARE OF THE MESS.

    IF McCAIN IS ELECTED, HE WILL PROBABLY ADD MORE TROOPS BECAUSE HE CERTAINLY BENEFITS FROM CONTINUATION OF THE WAR.

    AMERICAN PEOPLE SHOULD NOT ALLOW THIS TO HAPPEN.

    THE WAR NEED TO COME TO AN END OR ELSE THE IRAQI LEADERS WILL NOT SIT UP AND TAKE RESPONSIBILITY FOR THEMSELVES.

    THE ONLY PERSON THAT IS CERTAIN TO DO THAT IS OBAMA.

    THAT IS WHY WE HAVE TO ELECT HIM THE NEXT PRESIDENT.

    September 9, 2008 01:15 pm at 1:15 pm |
  17. jay

    Yes we can!

    Obama/Biden 08

    September 9, 2008 01:15 pm at 1:15 pm |
  18. Kool-Aid-Drinking

    So the inexperience guy got it right.

    Let's say it together.

    Obama is right....McCain is asleep and wrong.

    September 9, 2008 01:16 pm at 1:16 pm |
  19. NotFallingInLine.org

    War, war, war, war!
    War, war, war, war!
    War, war, war, war!
    War, war, war, war!
    War, war, war, war!
    War, war, war, war!

    What's wrong with Obama, doesn't he know that Amreicans want WAR?!

    September 9, 2008 01:16 pm at 1:16 pm |
  20. Anonymous

    I wanted to post this on the "Bridge to Nowhere" thread, but it was closed.

    Let it go, Gov. Congeniality. No one's buying it.

    Do they really think she can sail by on this script for the next 57 days. It might be good enough to get her through the end of the day when she high-tails it back to the Klondike, but after her Charlie Gibson interview she's going to need fresh talking points.

    What are the odds she never comes back from AK? They'll drop her from the campaign for personal reasons and put in the white male they always wanted.

    This would accomplish two things: they'll say, "See, we wanted a woman, but the bad liberal media didn't want it." That's the same media they say was in the bag for Hillary Clinton.

    Second, it will ensure another woman will not be taken seriously as a candidate for the next hundred years, cementing the white male hold on power.

    September 9, 2008 01:16 pm at 1:16 pm |
  21. Rock and Roll relics... dinosaur rockers!

    Hi, I'm the candidate of insipid timid platitudes and glittering generalities. I'm known by my friends as "red herring." And I'm here today to talk to you about how eeeeeeevil George Bush is, I mean John McCain.

    I realize I sound like a mumbling, stumbling bad Huxtable impersonator, but really, I uh... err... uh... I... uh... Camille and the puddin' pops.

    Now I know you may have concerns about CHANGING to socialism, especially since it's never worked anywhere it's ever been tried... ever. But really, I'll bet you'll find your new chains to be quite comfortable, once you've felt the alternative... a butt of a rifle in your gut for resisting to hand over your paycheck.

    Remember, as a good socialist, it's best that we're all equal in our misery instead of the potential inequalities that may exist when people are free to do as they choose. Aren't you happy I saved you from all that? Now, about your womb-to-tomb care...

    September 9, 2008 01:16 pm at 1:16 pm |
  22. gary

    NOW OBAMA WANTS TO KEEP BUSH'S TAX CUTS. WHAT A BIG JOKE. FFFFFFFFLLLLLLLIIIIIPPPPP FFLLLLOPPEER. THAT MEANS HE IS THE BIGGEST FLIP FLOPPER,AND ALL YOU O.B. SUPPORTERS ARE NOTHING BUT HATERS, LIKE HIS CHICAGO DIRTY TACTICS.

    September 9, 2008 01:16 pm at 1:16 pm |
  23. Anonymous

    I also think Palin should stop pointing every time she talks down to us. It's off-putting.

    September 9, 2008 01:17 pm at 1:17 pm |
  24. Dave, Illinois

    Obama and the Dems just can't stand all the good news out of Iraq. The American people are seeing past them. McCain is way up in the polls and is closing the gap on the electoral map as well. The most telling poll I have seen on RCP's website is the congressional "generic" poll between the parties. The Republicans were down by 20 points at one time – now its only 5. Face it, Obamites, the adults have awakened and your empty suit is going down in flames.

    September 9, 2008 01:17 pm at 1:17 pm |
  25. inat

    Afghanistan is a NATO mission, not unilateral US mission. Over past couple years NATO coalition troop levels have increasesd by about 20,000 troops and Afghanistan has added about 70,000 troops. I think thats a pretty big surge and a good example of a non-unilateral "surge"

    September 9, 2008 01:17 pm at 1:17 pm |
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