October 6th, 2008
01:00 PM ET
6 years ago

McCain targets Obama's year-old comment on Afghanistan

A new McCain ad questions Obama's past comments.
A new McCain ad questions Obama's past comments.

(CNN) – John McCain's campaign released a new ad Monday that targets year-old comments from Barack Obama about the conflict in Afghanistan, calling them flat out "dishonorable."

The ad comes as the Arizona senator's campaign aggressively steps up its attacks on Obama's readiness to be a commander-in-chief and raises questions about his background with only a month remaining before voters weigh in.

Watch: New ad targets Obama comments

"Who is Barack Obama? He says our troops in Afghanistan are ‘just air-raiding villages and killing civilians,’” the ad's announcer says. "How dishonorable."

The ad refers to an answer Obama gave at an August 2007 town hall meeting with New Hampshire voters, during which the Illinois senator was asked whether he had plans to shift U.S. troops out of Iraq to other terrorist hotspots like Afghanistan.

"We've got to get the job done there and that requires us to have enough troops so that we're not just air-raiding villages and killing civilians, which is causing enormous pressure over there," Obama said of the U.S. mission in Afghanistan.

Those comments were immediately seized by GOP critics. The Republican National Committee sent out a press release shortly after the remarks calling them "offensive," and demanding he apologize. The McCain campaign has also highlighted the comments several times this campaign season. An AP Fact Check later reported Western forces had been killing civilians at a higher rate than insurgents.

"Congressional liberals voted repeatedly to cut off funding to our active troops," the ad also says. "Increasing the risk on their lives. How dangerous. Obama and congressional liberals."

Palin also made similiar comments in an interview with CBS anchor Katie Couric last week and on the campaign trail in Florida Monday morning.

The campaign says the ad will run nationally, though it did not reveal the extent of the buy.

Responding to the ad, the Obama campaign released a statement from retired Admiral John B. Natham.

"Senator Obama has consistently voted to fund our troops in Afghanistan and Iraq and, just as importantly, a proven record of support when they return home," he said in the statement. "That's why independent veterans organizations give Senator Obama higher marks than Senator McCain. Despite consistent distortions of his record, thousands of veterans like myself support Senator Obama because he has the judgment, character and integrity to be a great president. We will need a great president to lead us in these very challenging times."


Filed under: Candidate Barack Obama • John McCain
soundoff (298 Responses)
  1. Maggie from Virginia

    Keep grasping at straws McCain... Nothing will stop this movement.

    October 6, 2008 09:15 am at 9:15 am |
  2. America the Stupid

    McOld is running out of time.....They can't talk on the issues (Palin doesn't know what the issues are) and all that is left is to attack and distract. Too bad McShame.

    October 6, 2008 09:15 am at 9:15 am |
  3. What a joke

    Lies, lies, and more lies. I hope Obama is ready for these "politics as usual" attacks the Repugs laucnh every four years.

    Stay Strong Barack....we got your back....

    October 6, 2008 09:16 am at 9:16 am |
  4. Truly American

    It is important to investigate H Obama. I don't care what his platform is. He has ties to some very bad unsavory people. I can't believe people don't look at this. Wake up... smell the coffee.. Obama's stinks..

    October 6, 2008 09:16 am at 9:16 am |
  5. Gidget Goes To Washington

    They are sooo "Mavericky"!

    They are just doin what Maverick's do.You betcha!

    Obama 08

    October 6, 2008 09:17 am at 9:17 am |
  6. Open Your 3rd Eye

    WHAT-–A--WEAK---AD

    IS---THAT--–THE--–BEST--–YOU---GOT-–???

    October 6, 2008 09:17 am at 9:17 am |
  7. PUMBU

    An AP Fact Check later reported Western forces had been killing civilians at a higher rate than insurgents.

    MCCAIN IS A DESRERATE MORON

    October 6, 2008 09:17 am at 9:17 am |
  8. Jerry Ohio

    Bye Bye McCain your candiacy is over with,,,,The American people would not feed into your negative attacks and Palin need to be put in a dog pound

    October 6, 2008 09:17 am at 9:17 am |
  9. Seth in Jacksonville, FL

    Obama is right – there have been more civilians killed in Afghanistan than actual bad guys. McCain is desperate.

    October 6, 2008 09:17 am at 9:17 am |
  10. BB

    McCain thinks it is dishonorable to speak the truth.

    October 6, 2008 09:17 am at 9:17 am |
  11. Mary

    With all the smear going on, the McCain camp has still not issued a statement of sympathy for the Biden family. I have always told my kids there are right and wrong things in life, things that you just have to suck it up and attend or address, guess my kids have been raised with better values then the McCain camp has, so much for the Christian side of the McCain and Palin values

    October 6, 2008 09:17 am at 9:17 am |
  12. Real Talk

    Desperate??????? Those are the words out of the General's mouth.

    I thought you would always listen to your Ground Generals John????

    October 6, 2008 09:18 am at 9:18 am |
  13. Phil in KC

    Umm.... I think they missed the point of the comment. Taken out of context, as usual.

    October 6, 2008 09:18 am at 9:18 am |
  14. Dutch-VA

    Stop trying to change the subject McLame. The economy is the issue, stick to it!! I guess you didn't get the memo that the economy is issue#1.

    OBAMA/BIDEN 08

    October 6, 2008 09:18 am at 9:18 am |
  15. Maria

    All I can say is:

    OBAMA AND:

    ACORN
    RASHID KHALIDI
    WRIGHT
    FARRAHKAN
    AYERS
    BERNADETTE DORN
    WOODS FUND
    FANNIE MAE
    FREDDIE MAC
    and the list goes on.....

    October 6, 2008 09:18 am at 9:18 am |
  16. PUMBU

    MCCAIN IS A DESPERATE MORON, MILLIONAIRES NEVER WANT TO LOSE, HE IS A LOSER!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    October 6, 2008 09:18 am at 9:18 am |
  17. AJP

    McCain is asking for it:

    "On the Keating 5 scandal, there is no doubt that McCain had ties to Keating, that Keating funded parts of John's early campaigns, that they were friends, and that John had to give back monies paid by Keating for things like vacations. All true, all bad. But not over the line.

    But the Obama campaign COULD take that extra step to pointing out the REALLY BAD things: McCain divorcing his first wife because she got fat, lying on his divorce application (using lawyer Bud Day, of Swift Boat fame), his gambling, Cindy's drug problem and the cover-up, and the rumour (that I've seen but can't find a legit source for) of his relationship with Joe Bonano."

    source: DemConWatch, Oct. 6, 2008

    October 6, 2008 09:18 am at 9:18 am |
  18. ines

    McCain = Keating 5

    October 6, 2008 09:18 am at 9:18 am |
  19. Beki

    I cannot stomach John McCain OR that thing he chose to be his VP.
    What a disgrace to America. This white, female independent voter will be voting Obama in '08.

    October 6, 2008 09:18 am at 9:18 am |
  20. Republicans stinks up the place

    McCain is grasping at straws. It's over for him, and I can't wait to punish the republican party on Nov 4th for destroying America more than anyone in the world could have done.

    October 6, 2008 09:18 am at 9:18 am |
  21. For Obama!!

    the TRUTH is not Dishonorable. If we are doing wrong which is seems in alot of ways we did terrible with this war... then we need to admit it.

    Unlike McCain who likes the BUSH way of Sweeping things under the rug and lying about it!!

    October 6, 2008 09:18 am at 9:18 am |
  22. proud army and navy mom

    so mcwar had to go back a year to find something Sen Obama said, take it out of context and distort the meaning and then demand an apology.

    The repugs are so desperate it's funny. They have pitbull, puppet Palin doing their dirty work and she's stupid enough to do it.

    Republicans, can't you all do any better than an old man and his nurse?

    October 6, 2008 09:19 am at 9:19 am |
  23. Jack

    Mccain forget Obama..please tell us what you can do to help us....All you seem to talk about is HATE , HATE , Aand HATE....

    October 6, 2008 09:19 am at 9:19 am |
  24. Susan from Scotts Valley, CA

    He spoke the truth at the time. Wouldn't that be horrible! To actually have a government that told us the truth.

    October 6, 2008 09:19 am at 9:19 am |
  25. Just a Mom

    This ad will win more votes for Sen. Obama.

    October 6, 2008 09:19 am at 9:19 am |
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