July 18th, 2008
01:48 PM ET
14 years ago

McCain predicts 'spectacular' terror attempts in Iraq

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2008/images/07/18/art.mccainterror.ap.jpg caption="McCain said he expects terror attempts to increase in Iraq."](CNN) - John McCain said Friday he expects the presidential election this fall will increase the occurrence of "spectacular" terror attempts in Iraq.

Speaking at a General Motors facility in Warren, Michigan, the presumptive Republican presidential candidate touted the decrease of violence in Iraq, but said Al Qaeda is not yet defeated there.

"I predict that they will make an attempt as we get in to the election season to make more of these spectacular kinds of attacks which they're still capable of doing," he said. "The suicide bombers, et cetera, would not surprise me and we've already found out that they're going to try and step up their attacks and try and do things in a more spectacular fashion so that they can erode the support of the Maliki government."

Watch: McCain predicts terrorist attempt during election season

The comments come a day after the Arizona senator appeared to make a rhetorical shift in how he described conditions the war-torn country, telling reporters aboard his campaign bus that "we have succeeded in Iraq."

"I repeat my statement that we have succeeded in Iraq. Not 'We are succeeding.' We have succeeded in Iraq," he said Thursday.

Last month, senior McCain advisor Charlie Black stirred controversy in an interview with Fortune Magazine, when he touted the Republican presidential candidate's national security credentials and said another terrorist attack on the United States would likely boost his White House chances.

McCain repudiated those comments, and Black later apologized.

Filed under: John McCain
soundoff (337 Responses)

    fear mongering again.
    shut up mccain.

    July 18, 2008 02:27 pm at 2:27 pm |
  2. selected not elected

    If the democrats had not pushed the unqualified leftist Obama and installed him as nominee- with no experience, track record or accomplishments... WE WOULD NOT BE IN THIS JAM NOW.

    We would be way ahead in the polls with a VALID, respected, trusted, tested, loved, experienced, qualified, accomplished CANDIDATE- Hillary R, Clinton.

    To fix a primary is to lose your way and is sure to lose the election.

    The democrats blew this one BIG time. I want to throw up to think of the sleazy dirty divisive politics that Obama played just to make his premature grab for the white house.

    July 18, 2008 02:27 pm at 2:27 pm |
  3. be gone redneck republic

    We "have succeeded" in Iraq Johnny Boy? So, mission accomplished, right?

    July 18, 2008 02:27 pm at 2:27 pm |
  4. Michele Hussein, Oregon

    The hallmark of a terrorist is persuasion by fear.

    Sometimes we become more similar to what we are against if we lack self-knowledge. If we continue to live in denial and pride about our own culpability, we become perpetrators ourselves and compound the problem. When will it end?

    July 18, 2008 02:28 pm at 2:28 pm |
  5. GERRY

    McCain, Why don't you just go to bed and sleep off the hangover you are experiencing or are you just having a bad nightmare? Just what in the hell are you trying to put over on the people. You are trying the same old Bush tatics – SCARE – SCARE – SCARE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    You don't have a chance in November why waste any more money just give what you have to the poor and needy in our country who really need it.

    July 18, 2008 02:28 pm at 2:28 pm |
  6. Janet Singley

    Of course there will be a terrorist attack. Unfortunately, it will be this administration that will 'allow' it.
    Anyone betting that it will be sometime around November,

    July 18, 2008 02:28 pm at 2:28 pm |
  7. Say What?!

    John McFear ought to be ashamed of himself! What will he say next.?In 2000, I felt sorry for him because of how he was treated by George W. Bush . I wonder who is whispering sweet little nothings in McCain's ears. Is it Charlie Black or is it Karl Rove? Maybe both of them?

    July 18, 2008 02:29 pm at 2:29 pm |
  8. Christopher in TN

    If we have succeeded why can't we now have a schedule of troop withdrawals so that our soldiers can come home? McBush is a pandering fool.

    July 18, 2008 02:29 pm at 2:29 pm |
  9. maria

    Yeah if you and your fear mongongering, warmongering ,profit making buddiesmake it happen.

    Impeach Bush now!

    July 18, 2008 02:29 pm at 2:29 pm |
  10. Renee

    Geez,and I thought Bush was a dolt.

    July 18, 2008 02:29 pm at 2:29 pm |
  11. Becky


    Americans are SICK of it.

    Obama '08

    July 18, 2008 02:29 pm at 2:29 pm |
  12. AT

    Iraq is not an American state or territory much less protectorate? Last time I check, McCain and Bush started this WAR. So what if there is any terrorist attack, there are happening every day. Is this another tactic of telling us VOTE for Bush because you will be attack? There are terrorism everyday in IRAQ, Afghanistan and other places around the World. In the case of Iraq this is the 8 time there seem to be a morf into another reason why we should be there. WMD, Saddam, Stability in the region, Surge, and many more. It is amazing, if Americans believe this madness we deserve nothing better. FEAR is all the Republicans have at the end of the day. You cannot elect any leader base on fear, McCain has not track record of doing good for anyone except campaign finance for himself, which really didn't amount to much either.


    July 18, 2008 02:29 pm at 2:29 pm |
  13. Serviceman

    If we get bombed again can we blame it on GB like you did the first one on Clinton, isn't that how it works?

    July 18, 2008 02:29 pm at 2:29 pm |
  14. Ok

    bla bla bla is he still talking

    July 18, 2008 02:29 pm at 2:29 pm |
  15. Barbara

    McCain has officially lost it. He can't say anything good about himself or his party so he makes up stories of fear and makes up lies against Obama to scare ignorant people around this country into voting for him. This is the same way that the miserable failure that is George W. Bush won. Be smarter America...don't let this type of politics fool you into voting for McBush.

    Obama is the smart and visionary leader that our country needs.

    McCain is a hypocrite and fear monger that will do and say anything to get the ignorant vote.

    Vote Obama!

    July 18, 2008 02:29 pm at 2:29 pm |
  16. socialist-whiner

    oh no !the surge hasnt worked?oh ,it has. but,it wont last,because mccain still needs one issue to keep troops in iraq to protect republican oil profits.

    July 18, 2008 02:29 pm at 2:29 pm |
  17. E. Scott

    Are you people really going to vote for a junior Senator with limited experience and radical/racist connections. Give me a break.

    July 18, 2008 02:29 pm at 2:29 pm |
  18. selected not elected

    My terror comes from watching how my democratic party devolved into a party of name-calling, vitriolic, insulting pawns for Obama.

    The hatred hurled at fellow democrats and at the far better candidate of the party- created a wound that nothing will heal.

    Only a return to democratic ideals of fair campaigns, counting the votes, equality and justice for all will heal this divide.

    Only Hillary Clinton can put us back together again.

    Give us Lady Liberty and take away your socialist puppet.

    July 18, 2008 02:30 pm at 2:30 pm |
  19. Brandon

    I get a strange feeling that some of the comments from "former hillary supporters for mccain" are professionally written. Look at the quality of the other comments, then look at them. Hmmm, copy and paste from your retardlican resource site?

    If your republican and you can't tell McCain is firing up the fear mongering then your even dumber then the president you elected...twice...

    July 18, 2008 02:30 pm at 2:30 pm |
  20. Caycee

    Is this a self-fulfilling prophecy?

    July 18, 2008 02:30 pm at 2:30 pm |
  21. Ian

    Run for your lives, the terror alert status has been elevated from neon orange to hot pink!!!

    July 18, 2008 02:30 pm at 2:30 pm |
  22. S.M

    Well, thanks to you and the Bush administration there would be could be another terror attack. Just because McCain has "so called "predicted this attack or served in the military; doesn't mean that he is qualified to be Commander and Chief. When he went along with President Bush on attacking Iraq who had no connection to 911, this should tell the American people that he can't make good, moral, sound decisions on his own. He is President Bush's lap dog!

    July 18, 2008 02:30 pm at 2:30 pm |
  23. John Wilson

    The fact is, the republicans keep using this tactic, because it keeps working. For some reason, republicans go for the same thing every 4 years. Call an American born citizen, anti-American, and they buy it. Call a christian, a muslim, they buy it. Wow, They can make anyone one look bad. They seem to be using a two pronged attack. They are attacking Obama and the Democratic House of Reps.

    July 18, 2008 02:30 pm at 2:30 pm |
  24. Randy

    People....would you please use your tiny itsy bitsy little brains and read tha article and the quote.

    I don't blame you entirely since CNN as usual has shown their bias in the way they reported this story.

    He is not trying to use "fear" to scare you for the November Elections in this country. He is talking about Iraq and the Iraqi elections that are upcoming. That is why he said it would "attempt to weaken support for the Malaki government"

    He is not suggesting the terrorists are going to try to attack and you should fear them because of the November election.

    He is making a foreing policy statement that although things have improved by 500% in Iraq since the surge of troops he requested were actually sent in (I figured I would let you know things are much much better in Iraq as well since CNN refuses to report any of that as well) and he is stating that there is still work to be done to maintain a civil environment over there and that the terrorists will try to SCARE THE IRAQI people into changing their governments.

    It would have been nice if CNN could have written an articulate article about this rather than misleading you easily misguided obamabots.

    July 18, 2008 02:30 pm at 2:30 pm |
  25. white trash

    Remember back before 911, European newspapers were calling USA, the bully nation and Bush, the bully president. This horrible tragedy happened, and many innocent people suffered because of this nation's flawed foreign policy, bullying tactics and awry worldview.

    Our worldview regarding the rest of the world is, do it our way and our way is the best, or we are going to blow you to smithereens.

    How many Americans have talked with people around the world regarding their opinions of this nation? They despise Americans and abhor Bush. History proves repeatedly, that warring begets wars.

    We need to re-examine our thinking in regards to the rest of the world and our place in it. Gobally, we are also viewed as the planet's pigs as we consume more than our share of resources and this builds resentments.

    July 18, 2008 02:31 pm at 2:31 pm |
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