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

Obama begins overseas swing in Afghanistan

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2008/POLITICS/07/18/obama.trip/art.obama.thurs.gi.jpg caption="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.

Full story

Filed under: Candidate Barack Obama
soundoff (225 Responses)
  1. obama is unfit to be president of this country

    The fool had to take men with him who knew what questions to ask on the ground. What an idiot.What a show.Nothing more but an unfit empty suit.

    July 19, 2008 01:15 pm at 1:15 pm |
  2. Charlotte

    A wimp on tour. What will he give away while campaigning in Iraq, Afghanistan and the rest of Europe? How much fuel is wasted on these two candidates globe trotting? Obama is going now because he got goated into it by McCain. Wonder if he is scared to death? I'm sure our troops will protect him. He is trying to improve his image at our expense.

    July 19, 2008 01:16 pm at 1:16 pm |
  3. John Z.

    Is this Obama's first trip out of the country? It's a little late to be learning about foreign policy isn't it? Just who were the chuckleheads that decided to make Obama the Democratic nominee?

    July 19, 2008 01:18 pm at 1:18 pm |
  4. Anna, SW Missouri

    CNN you need to also report that in that same poll the voters say they will vote for Obama 50% to 42%. Your tabloid journalism is getting to be quite obvious.

    July 19, 2008 01:18 pm at 1:18 pm |
  5. Watermann

    Did voters believe in 2000 and 2004 and based on what, that President G.W. Bush had experience on foreign politics, economy, and military issues and national security. I am so sick and tired of reading this nonsens.
    A President must be clever and, up to a certain extent, honest to his people and his allies. Like a CEO of a big company he has to place the right staff on the right place and after that he has to make the right decision based on proper intelligence. What has age or any military record to do with "being ready on day one"? I can`t believe that millions of Americans and of course of other nations can be that stupid.

    I admit that I am a supporter of Senator Obama. Please tell me on which mainstream media in the US I can follow intelligent discussions without any stupid and bias arguments. Since I am German, please remember that also Adolf Hitler had no experience at all. And what has he done to the entire world?, Does anybody believe that Senator Obama is of the same nature.

    Well, after following on various news rooms the discussions in connection with the cover page of "The New Yorker" I am deeply concerned that millions of simple minded people get the wrong ideas.

    I really do hope that at the end of the day your great nation takes the right and rational decision on November 4th and forgets about "still for Hill" – " I will win this war". The rest of the world is still depending on the health of the USA.

    July 19, 2008 01:23 pm at 1:23 pm |
  6. susie

    From the amount of coverage, it looks more like he is a rock star, than a Presidential candidate. He has 300 advisors to tell him what to say on foreign affairs?!?!

    July 19, 2008 01:25 pm at 1:25 pm |
  7. buddy

    w c

    omes obama 's pictures on the Iranian web site as a brother in arms?

    July 19, 2008 01:26 pm at 1:26 pm |
  8. Dwe5050


    You guys make me sick, it's okay to report Post/ABC's poll that says that most people consider mcsame a better commander in chief than obama, but what is not okay, is that you deliberately left out that that same poll says that majority of people would vote for obama over mcsame by a margin of 50% against 42%. Have you now started playing partisan politics just like the Post and ABC that conducted the poll and have refused to emphasize that most people would vote for obama instead of mcsame while emphasizing only the aspect of the poll that is favourable to mcsame.

    That result of the poll was that if the election were to be held today, obama will defeat mcsame by a margin of 50% against 42% and I believe it's high time you started emphasizing that. May God bless America.

    July 19, 2008 01:26 pm at 1:26 pm |
  9. pa

    how comes obam is on the iranian web site as a brother?

    July 19, 2008 01:27 pm at 1:27 pm |
  10. Seyi

    Good Luck Senator,
    You know there's a lot people (Repubs) waiting on you to screw up.
    A lot at stake right now.

    July 19, 2008 01:27 pm at 1:27 pm |
  11. katiec

    what good does it do to leave a comment
    you publish only what your selectiv e minds
    consider good for mccain

    July 19, 2008 01:27 pm at 1:27 pm |
  12. S. Boatman

    This Is A Good Week For The Next President!

    July 19, 2008 01:28 pm at 1:28 pm |
  13. Enough already!

    So what is being said, is that this trip is all for show.

    July 19, 2008 01:30 pm at 1:30 pm |
  14. Democrat No More/San Diego

    Obama is a rock star not a world leader.

    July 19, 2008 01:33 pm at 1:33 pm |
  15. Joseph, Los Angeles

    I think Mr. Obama has the ability to improve our standing in the world and that he will be welcomed and embraced by the foriegn leaders who will be happy to have an intellegent, smart, and dignified person who represents the United States in their midst. I wish him the best of luck. He will do just fine.

    July 19, 2008 01:38 pm at 1:38 pm |
  16. sdl

    I find it very disturbing that McCain broadcast this schedule at his last townhall meeting in PUBLIC.

    He actually said when and where he thought Obama would be on the ground there-
    information that is kept strictly secure for ALL U.S. representatives visiting in a volatile and dangerous war zone!

    Anyone else feel McCain's deliberate revealing of the schedule beforehand was dangerous to Obama personally, as well as the two other representatives and ALL the support and service personnel surrounding them, on this trip?

    I don't care WHAT party or 'values' you espouse, deliberately putting your opponent at risk seems blatantly unpatriotic, unAmerican, and the act of a coward and traitor to the values this country should espouse.

    Yes, I am VERY disturbed that someone that was actually IN a war, and even captured by the enemy, could even THINK about doing such a thing-
    but to actually DO IT is appalling.

    July 19, 2008 01:40 pm at 1:40 pm |
  17. dems be dopes

    One trip will make him an expert and "bolster" his foreign policy credentials before U.S. voters.

    Imagine if he made one trip and actually did something in the Senate to bolster his image.

    Way too much to ask of him.

    I think I'll take a trip over to IBM, shake some hands, get some photo ops, look concerned the apply for the CEO position.

    July 19, 2008 01:41 pm at 1:41 pm |
  18. Ken Pittsburgh

    This is the chanced for the world to see what a American Leader really looks like.

    July 19, 2008 01:53 pm at 1:53 pm |
  19. Keith

    Barack Obama is going to be best President we have seen for a long time. I have been convinced over the course of the last few months that he is more than capable of leading this country.

    Obama/Whoever 08

    July 19, 2008 01:54 pm at 1:54 pm |
  20. Karen

    I am kind of impressed seeing Obama and the official from Afghanistan hugging each other. They looked so comfortable with each other. McCain looked so out of touch when he was in Iraq. I feel that Iraqi and Afgani governments will trust Obama's administration more.

    And Iraqi president also told that he supports Obama's plan.

    That is good enough reason for me to believe Obama has better foreign policy credentials.

    July 19, 2008 01:56 pm at 1:56 pm |
  21. franco

    " 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 by doing this trip, Obama is following the suggestion he received from McCain..........

    July 19, 2008 01:59 pm at 1:59 pm |
  22. lany

    Wonderful! Sooner or later we will get Bin Laden!

    July 19, 2008 02:03 pm at 2:03 pm |
  23. texan

    So in other words Barack Hussein Obama is going to Europe ,Afghanistan,Iraq,Jordan and what have you. Now he will be a expert on foreign affairs??????? Is he going to get a star and become a general?
    Poor ignorant and arrogant man.

    July 19, 2008 02:04 pm at 2:04 pm |
  24. Mike

    The American Commanders will be in shock. Oh my God, a politician with a brain. And, wow he actually cares about our soldiers.

    July 19, 2008 02:08 pm at 2:08 pm |
  25. Dems

    Cotton Candy candidate. Fraud.

    July 19, 2008 02:12 pm at 2:12 pm |
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