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Dissecting Washington with Political Analyst Earl Ofari Hutchinson

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Earl Ofari Hutchinson is a political analyst as well as the author of ten books and hundreds of articles, many of which can be found at OpEdNews. Over his long career, he has frequently spoken on radio and television and appeared in the national press. Welcome to OpEdNews, Earl. In a speech at West Point on December 1, President Obama announced a 30,000 troop increase for the war in Afghanistan. Was this response ever in doubt?


Earl Ofari Hutchinson

In speeches, interviews, and off the cuff talks dating back to August 2007 before he was the Democratic presidential candidate, Obama repeatedly called Afghanistan the war that had to be fought and the war that had to be won. He made it crystal clear that, if president, he would not only fight it, but fight it to win no matter what the time, cost, and military effort required. He's simply done exactly what he long promised. Why anyone, especially anyone on the left, would be shocked at this and rail at the president as a back flipper, betrayer and sell out shows that they've had their head in the sand or, more likely, and more fatally continuing to try to makeover Obama into something he isn't and never was, namely, a progressive, peace candidate. An added note never in the century plus history of the Nobel Peace Prize has it been awarded to a person with no track record for peace, and worse, one who is waging not one but two wars.

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I know you're not a mind reader. But, feel free to speculate here. Why do you think the Committee took the unprecedented step of awarding the Peace Prize to someone "with no track record for peace"? Surely there were plenty of people out there working for peace. Was it wishful thinking on their part? A terrible misstep?

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The Nobel Committee did not award Obama the prize based on A. A long, personal track record working for international peace and reconciliation; B. A long history of working with governments and NGO organizations for peace and reconciliation; and C. Because of any tangible accomplishment of his to end wars, conflicts, brush fires, strengthen peace diplomacy. They awarded him the award for 1. He is a history-making first; 2. They mistook his rhetoric about peace for real action; 3. They were media and celebrity star-struck with him.

The Committee should be embarrassed by their choice and Obama should have had the good graces to turn it down with the statement that "I don't deserve it, but I will work hard in the next three years to make global peace a reality, and then when I accomplish my end, I humbly hope to be considered for the award."

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If we put aside Obama's foreign policy, for a moment, how's he doing a year in? Has he shown signs of moving decisively to clean up the mess left behind by the last administration?

Not only has he not cleaned up Bush's mess, he's dumped more mess on the nation's pile. Double digit unemployment (double double digit underemployment), home foreclosures at record highs, no real controls on Wall Street trading, swaps, and lending, no requirements for banks to lend, a sham of a consumer protection law, no real cost containment provisions in health care reform, a record debt, and a stimulus plan that was weak, underfunded, and created no new jobs, worst of all, surrounding himself with the same economic crew -- Geithner, Summers, Rubin, and Bernacke -- responsible for the economic/financial debacle.

Beyond the historic significance of having the first person of color in the White House, was Obama the right man for the job? Or, do you think this is a mess no mere mortal could have wrestled into submission?

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Joan Brunwasser is a co-founder of Citizens for Election Reform (CER) which since 2005 existed for the sole purpose of raising the public awareness of the critical need for election reform. Our goal: to restore fair, accurate, transparent, secure elections where votes are cast in private and counted in public. Because the problems with electronic (computerized) voting systems include a lack of (more...)
 

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