Powell Endorses


  1. #1 by Raven on 20th October, 2008 - 4:31 pm

    Stunning news. So many angles to be explored:

    - how has such a high profile Republican come to support a Democrat?
    - why the announcement now? Was there collusion over the timing, as there often is in British Politics when a politician ‘turns’?
    - and inevitably, did race enter into it?

    I’d love to know what really happened behind the scenes.

    On balance, it can only be a good thing for Obama. It still continues to hit me what a momentous happening the election of Obama would be - it is hardly believable that it’s going to happen. Let’s hope this doesn’t turn out to be his ‘Kinnock moment’…

  2. #2 by leon on 20th October, 2008 - 7:42 pm

    Long expected but a real boon for the Obama campaign. Wonder if Powell will be the new Sec Defense?

  3. #3 by Ravi Naik on 20th October, 2008 - 10:40 pm

    I have to say that I was very impressed with Powell. Not his endorsement, but the fact that he talked about how troubled he was that “Muslim” has become an accepted slur among anti-Obama crowds, and he mentioned this young Muslim-American soldier who died in Iraq. Very impressed indeed.

  4. #4 by shariq on 20th October, 2008 - 11:38 pm

    Ravi, agreed that the response to the anti-Muslim slurs was the most powerful part of his endorsement.

    Raven, I think Powell was always a moderate Republican if not an Independent so I don’t think the turning element is as significant especially as he’s not going to be in the next govt.

    I think that the Obama campaign probably did hold this back though as Powell has said he won’t be actively campaigning.

    Leon, I think Powell doesn’t really want more of politics. Also, apparently the Obama team likes the current sec. of Defence and would possibly like him to continue.

  5. #5 by Refresh on 21st October, 2008 - 12:21 am

    It was a compelling endorsement, and his comments regarding muslims made it all the more powerful.

    I would be interested to see Powell in the Obama cabinet, if and only if Obama supports criminal proceedings against the outgoing cabal. Powell would be in a position to map out where the skeletons are likely to be.

  6. #6 by Nyrone on 21st October, 2008 - 4:42 am

    He makes perfect sense in this interview, even if I have disagreed with him 100% of times in the past.

    It’s insightful, thoughtful and poignant, especially the emotion-laden point about discrimination against Muslims and how it now being legitimized and normalized as a slur.

    My question is: Why has it taken him to say this? and why so long? He’s right…that is the correct answer for the ‘Obama-Muslim’ crap circulating, but why has nobody else dared to say this loudly and publicly? Why hasn’t McCain ever stated the basic point?

    Note: However, I still can’t forgive Colin Powell for his cartoon presentation to the U.N in 2003. He should have been laughed out of the room that day. Boy did Journalists fail on that one…

  7. #7 by Ravi Naik on 21st October, 2008 - 3:03 pm

    I would be interested to see Powell in the Obama cabinet, if and only if Obama supports criminal proceedings against the outgoing cabal. Powell would be in a position to map out where the skeletons are likely to be.

    I don’t think Powell would accept a post in an Obama administration. To be honest, I think his presentation in the UN damaged him, and I believe what we saw in this video is really his revenge, or closure to his political career that I am sure he wants to forget.

    I also think Obama will not push for a criminal investigation of the Bush administration. It would deeply polarise the country, would take the focus out of the problems that the US faces, and also his vision for America. What I hope he does, though, is have an independent investigation on EVERYTHING this administration has done and publish the report for everyone to see, and also enforce tough rules so that it will be harder for the President to break the rules.

    Will he do it? I don’t know. But he knows very well how the system works.

  8. #8 by Leon on 21st October, 2008 - 6:02 pm

    I’m yet to be convinced Powell won’t be playing a significant part in the coming Obama administration…;)

  9. #9 by Refresh on 21st October, 2008 - 6:29 pm

    ‘My question is: Why has it taken him to say this? and why so long? He’s right…that is the correct answer for the ‘Obama-Muslim’ crap circulating, but why has nobody else dared to say this loudly and publicly? Why hasn’t McCain ever stated the basic point?’

    You could argue politics is all about timing. If it had been done much sooner it would have had less of an impact and given the opponent time to re-form and smear again, taking Powell with it.

    Politics at its finest.

    Ravi, I agree. A detailed report which might encourage a special prosecutor to take the stage a la Starr. It would be a smart move, as there would be no Bush to offer pardons. Perhaps it might also allow time for the public to realise the criminal damage they have done to the US - which in turn might just stop them being resurrected as they were after the Iran-Contra affair.

  10. #10 by Refresh on 21st October, 2008 - 6:37 pm

    I know it sounds odd but the only window McCain has for challenging anti-muslim rhetoric would be AFTER the election if he wins.

    If he wanted to do it before his window would have been months ago.

    But he is not smart enough.

  11. #11 by Sid on 21st October, 2008 - 6:56 pm

    Politics at its finest.

    It really is. I think when a man with his gravitas makes the statement “So what if were a Muslim?”, it stops people dead in their tracks. It is the one question that neither side (GOPs or Dems) have managed to verbalise, let alone get their heads around.

  12. #12 by Refresh on 21st October, 2008 - 7:03 pm

    Its interesting that the blogworld sees that to be the most crucial comment Powell could have made - but none of the mainstream news media has carried it here in the UK. Or have I missed it?

  13. #13 by Sid on 21st October, 2008 - 7:08 pm

    Because the other Powell has endorsed McCain. Enoch that is.

  14. #14 by Don on 21st October, 2008 - 7:20 pm

    I’m sure someone else has pointed this out, but in the clip where McCain seems to reign in his more rabid supporters and identifies Obama as a decent man we have this dialogue,

    Stooge: He’s an Arab

    McCain: No, ma’am. He’s a decent family man…

  15. #15 by halima on 21st October, 2008 - 7:28 pm

    “but none of the mainstream news media has carried it here in the UK. Or have I missed it?”

    I heard it on the BBC World Service which I hear no-one in Britain listens to. But I didn’t hear all - just the bit where he comes out to support Obama’s credential and I did think I was half dreaming being a sleep. I missed the reference to the anti-Muslim sentiment but sounds really heartening to know this came from a mainstream US politician. Very powerful.

  16. #16 by halima on 21st October, 2008 - 7:30 pm

    “Stooge: He’s an Arab

    McCain: No, ma’am. He’s a decent family man…”

    Excellent!

  17. #17 by Refresh on 21st October, 2008 - 7:34 pm

    Halima, the endorsement story has been carried but not the reference to muslims. Do you think you missed it on the World Service, or did they not carry it either?

  18. #18 by halima on 21st October, 2008 - 7:48 pm

    Oh.. Hard to say , it was genuinely in the early hours of the morning when I was waking up…

    But I was going to say , if it wasn’t carried, it might mean the mainstream media simply don’t understand how significant or powerful this type of message is. It was very powerful - because it means we are presenting a united front as black, white and other groups on countering terrorism but not joining in the constant vilifying of Muslims. It’s more powerful to me personally because it’s coming form a prominent non-white US politician who served at the highest possible rank to counter terrorism.

  19. #19 by Leon on 21st October, 2008 - 8:48 pm

    Stooge: He’s an Arab

    McCain: No, ma’am. He’s a decent family man…

    Yeah because you know you can’t be both…

  20. #20 by Ravi Naik on 21st October, 2008 - 10:17 pm

    To me, the most priceless moment in his pathetic rallies, is when he started making the case that Obama had close relations with Ayers - a domestic terrorist. Then he asked the crowd: “Who is the real Obama?”… and the crowd shouted: “A terrorist!”, and McCain looks visible surprised at the reaction, since he obviously was making a rhetoric question. A truly pythonesque moment, no? :)

  21. #21 by Ravi Naik on 21st October, 2008 - 10:24 pm

    By the way, here is a picture of Obama and his grandfather.

    It’s striking that he looks very much like him.

  22. #22 by Refresh on 21st October, 2008 - 10:32 pm

    And just behind him seems to be a very young McCain supporter.

  23. #23 by Refresh on 21st October, 2008 - 10:36 pm

    ‘Stooge: He’s an Arab

    McCain: No, ma’am. He’s a decent family man…’

    This really is political correctness gone mad.

  24. #24 by Leon on 21st October, 2008 - 10:49 pm

    By the way, here is a picture of Obama and his grandfather.

    It’s striking that he looks very much like him.

    Yep was just looking at that photo and thinking much the same…

  25. #25 by El Cid on 5th November, 2008 - 4:56 pm

    Stooge: He’s an Arab

    McCain: No, ma’am. He’s a decent family man…

    Yeah because you know you can’t be both…

    C’mon Refresh and Leon! You know you can give McCain the benefit of the doubt. What good does it serve to assume that what he meant was anything but benign — i.e. that he didn’t want to entertain the stooge’s xenophobic leanings. He just got his words wrong. Maybe I am being naive on this one, but I suspect you both know that I am right.
    Question for Leon: define ‘cheap shot’

  26. #26 by Refresh on 5th November, 2008 - 5:44 pm

    El Cid, today he deserves the benefit of the doubt!

    If you hear anyone call someone a ‘decent family man’ you can be sure they are arab.

  27. #27 by shariq on 5th November, 2008 - 6:11 pm

    Agree with El Cid. I think when McCain heard the booing during his speech he was thinking what type of monster has the republican party created. Also, worth noting that even Colin Powell said that he was one of the most non-discriminatory people that he has known.

  28. #28 by Leon on 5th November, 2008 - 6:18 pm

    McCain could have easily did what Powell did and said so what if he was? Fact is he consented to stir up that ugly monster with Palin and his negative attack ads.

    Compare and contrast; the campaign is the measure of the man.

  29. #29 by El Cid on 5th November, 2008 - 6:20 pm

    Leon, agreed, Co-lin’s response was superior, but we can’t get it right all of the time — not least when put on the spot. He was clearly embarassed and shocked. I think you are just being mean-spirited and — like others I could mention — out of synch with Obama’s consensual and bridge-building ways. McCain deserves respect even if we’re glad he lost.

  30. #30 by El Cid on 5th November, 2008 - 6:44 pm

    “the campaign is the measure of the man.”

    Hmmm. I’m pondering this turn of phrase. So political debate should have an ethical dimension? If so I agree with you Leon. But remember it works both ways.

  31. #31 by Ravi Naik on 5th November, 2008 - 7:01 pm

    He was clearly embarassed and shocked. I think you are just being mean-spirited and — like others I could mention — out of synch with Obama’s consensual and bridge-building ways. McCain deserves respect even if we’re glad he lost.

    He deserves nothing of the sort. I agree that the “arab-decent man” thing came out wrong - he didn’t mean to imply that arabs are not decent, but it is undeniable that he created a vicious campaign that fuelled up his crowd with hatred and fear. Sarah Palin’s “Obama’s paling with terrorists who want to destroy America” happened until the very end, even after McCain being “shocked”. Did you see his latest ad where he put middle-eastern music and accused Obama with paling with a “PLO terrorist”?

    Sorry, McCain sold out his principles long ago, and became a spineless, unprincipled, incompetent man, dishonest man who had the gull and the arrogance to choose a complete unqualified, ignorant, running mate with a good chance to take his place should he die or be incapacitated. A gamble to overtake Obama, and I am so relieved that he failed miserably.

    McCain? Good riddance. Hopefully he will be booted out of the senate in two years.

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