July 19th, 2008
11:00 AM ET
12 years ago

Obama begins overseas swing in Afghanistan

Sen. Barack Obama will visit several world leaders over the next few weeks.

Sen. Barack Obama will visit several world leaders over the next few weeks.

(CNN) - Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama is in Afghanistan on a multistop overseas trip for meetings with international leaders but with an eye on the U.S. presidential race back home.

Obama's trip, which includes visits to Iraq, Jordan, Israel, Germany, France and the United Kingdom, is intended to bolster his foreign policy credentials before U.S. voters.

"This is the campaign trail via satellite - pictures for the rhetoric back home," CNN's Candy Crowley said, adding that the trip was intended to demonstrate that Obama was up to the job of taking a lead role on the international stage.

"The question is, is he tough enough to stand up for America but graceful enough to improve [its] image?" Crowley said.

In a recent Washington Post/ABC News poll, 48 percent of registered voters said Obama would make a good commander in chief, compared with 72 percent for his Republican rival, John McCain.

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Filed under: Candidate Barack Obama
soundoff (225 Responses)
  1. Down with Obama

    Hope they keep him over there along with the abc, nbc and cbs anchors!! They can stay there with their buddy Osama!! Birds of a feather, flock together!!!

    July 19, 2008 11:38 am at 11:38 am |
  2. kent

    "The question is, is he tough enough to stand up for America but graceful enough to improve [its] image?"

    **************************
    Yes he is. Yes he is. The answer to both sides of the question.

    July 19, 2008 11:38 am at 11:38 am |
  3. go away mongers- Ventura ca

    This trip which is being bashed by the RNC and McCain camp as a "photo op" is one their candidate called for. Obama always does the smart thing and the best thing for this country. He will make a great President. He needs no counsel from a group that has taken this country to the edge of abyss.

    July 19, 2008 11:39 am at 11:39 am |
  4. Rebecca From Toledo, Ohio

    Does Obama think we are all stupid?? He is ONLY doing this as a
    PR stunt. He dosen't know diddley about foreign affairs. I hope he leaves his wife at home so she dosen't get up and make one of her stupid speeches.

    July 19, 2008 11:40 am at 11:40 am |
  5. RENEE

    I believe in you Obama. You are the one who can restore America again. These Republican criminals has destroyed us all over the world. We need you and every night I pray to God that he will give you to us.

    July 19, 2008 11:40 am at 11:40 am |
  6. AJ

    Perhaps we could put him out on the front lines? Lets see if he can talk them into submission; he's done a good job of doing that here in the US.

    July 19, 2008 11:40 am at 11:40 am |
  7. Don't Vote For Hate

    I bet Mr Obama won't be brave enough to accept flowers from a child and wait for the photo op while under sniper fire like his opponent did!

    July 19, 2008 11:43 am at 11:43 am |
  8. Brad

    "In a recent Washington Post/ABC News poll, 48 percent of registered voters said Obama would make a good commander in chief, compared with 72 percent for his Republican rival, John McCain."

    So... that adds up to 120%. Pretty efficient survey there.

    July 19, 2008 11:45 am at 11:45 am |
  9. Maggie Muggins From Selwyn

    Hey America I just had a dream!

    In 2008 America elected it's first Black President.

    In 2058 America elected it's first Woman President.

    In 2108 America elected it's first Gay/Lesbian President.

    In 2158 America declared the days of the Wild West were over and people no longer had to be armed to the teeth under the premise of their own self protection.

    Don't panic Mr. McCain it was only a dream so with a little luck and a lot more intolerance your party can still prevent all this from happening.

    July 19, 2008 11:45 am at 11:45 am |
  10. Franky

    "It's about politics. It's a way for Obama to try and compete on foreign policy," Jill Hazelbaker said."

    Look who's talking! LOL!! Don't even get me started with Senator McCain, LOL!!

    By the way, this is crazy guys!! He's not here in the states, he's on the international stage! This is just amazing! You do gotta admit, it is pretty cool....

    July 19, 2008 11:46 am at 11:46 am |
  11. Monica for Obama in Indiana

    Obama would have been a good Commander in Chief, even if he had not taken this trip. Because he has the decency, integrity and judgement to surround himself with experts from both sides of the aisle to do what is necessary to get America back on track and the respect of the world once again. No one wants to stay in a hole all of their lives. With the bush administration we are accessible to all terroist here and abroad.

    Whether republicans are saying it through polls or not, I saw on a news report that they will be voting for Obama in November.

    Good thing voting is private.

    July 19, 2008 11:48 am at 11:48 am |
  12. baracomama

    the McCain camp is already crying about all the attention Obamas tour will be getting from the press. he knew that his hollow immature dare to have town weekly tall hall meetings would be the only way this guy can draw any kind of crowds but being a real leader not a follower Mr Obama let him see that McCain is not in charge and does not set the agenda.. I pray Oh how I pray that this guy gets what he is wishing for. MEDIA please give him the attention he is begging for. Show him as the lying, flip-flopping clown that he is.

    July 19, 2008 11:49 am at 11:49 am |
  13. Thomas, Illinois

    Good luck Senator....Obama 08

    July 19, 2008 11:49 am at 11:49 am |
  14. TiredOfMcCainsFreeRide

    Can you please report on the fact that John McCain, just "let it slip" that Barack Obama will likely be in Iraq this weekend? These are details that no one was releasing for obvious security reasons, yet John McCain somehow feels it's ok to release those details which put is opponent at risk.

    But I guess the MSM will just treat it as one of those cute "McCain gaffes" and give him yet another free ride.

    July 19, 2008 11:49 am at 11:49 am |
  15. Linda31

    Oh he is tough and graceful info! Although I am mad that McCain let info about Obama travel plans slip. For someone who is a "seasoned" Senator, I question that slip.

    July 19, 2008 11:53 am at 11:53 am |
  16. Franky

    Man guys, that's just so cool! LOL!! It got me psyched up!!

    And not to mention that the King of Jordan wants to talk policy already!! In my opinion, this is the most coolest thing by far. I know I care about the economy but this for me, I really like a lot...

    July 19, 2008 11:55 am at 11:55 am |
  17. Brad - California

    Maybe the Bush/McCain administration could learn from the experience of Barak. The things that Obama said during the earlier stages of the campaign, e.g. sitting down with the enemy and talking, that were laughed at and called niave by everyone from Hillary Clinton to John McCain, are happening now. Apparently Bush and McCain are the niave and inexperienced ones.

    Maybe too much Washington "insider" experience is what got our country into the sad position it is today.

    July 19, 2008 11:55 am at 11:55 am |
  18. Terry, Dallas, Texas

    Definitely!!!!! The mere fact that Sen Obama was tough enough to stand up to the slanted media bias during the primaries and now leading up to the general election, suggests that he can and will. Who better than Sen Obama, especially when the only other alternative is Sen McCain, to gracefully improve America's image. What a contrast of the two. If the media would spend even a third of their time slammig McCain as they do Obama, we'd see different polling numbers and opinions of the candidates. That's exactly why I watch as little coverage as done by CNN.

    July 19, 2008 11:56 am at 11:56 am |
  19. George

    It's astounding that more people think McCain would be a good commander in chief than Obama.

    McCain was WRONG about the single most important foreign policy decision of our generation. Obama was RIGHT!

    McCain spacifically said he refuses to be diplomatic with Iran and WILL start a war with them. Guaranteed.

    America is really dumb for not seeing the obvious.

    July 19, 2008 11:57 am at 11:57 am |
  20. blaising

    McCombover would make a great "Smirker-in-Chief", just like the last one!!

    July 19, 2008 11:58 am at 11:58 am |
  21. Lisa

    God Bless Senator Obama....have a safe trip.

    July 19, 2008 12:00 pm at 12:00 pm |
  22. Herman in LA

    Those leaders around Barack shaking his hand after the meeting looks so promising and happy for him to be there...

    Obama 08!!!

    July 19, 2008 12:00 pm at 12:00 pm |
  23. JoeReed

    Obama already knows what is going in Iraq and Afghanistan. He really did not need to go, just like millions of Americans do not need to go to know what is really going on.. but, he did it to shup up John McCain and his group of thughs and now...he is whining about it !!!!!!

    Obama 08

    July 19, 2008 12:02 pm at 12:02 pm |
  24. what are you thinking?

    safe trip Mr. President....a new and better face of America the world will get to see

    July 19, 2008 12:02 pm at 12:02 pm |
  25. SSG

    Lets go to Afghanistan!!!! Iraq is so boring. There is nothing going on in here.

    July 19, 2008 12:06 pm at 12:06 pm |
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