Running Against Osama bin Laden

I just found this interesting article by Howard Fineman for Newsweek called “Running Against Osama bin Laden”.

He writes:

George W. Bush’s political handlers are obsessed with a date on the calendar. It’s not Sept. 11 or Nov. 2. It is June 30 — the day of the “handover,” when America’s role in Iraq is supposed to begin winding down. Swing voters who have been withholding judgment about the war want to see if the “transition” produces stability in Iraq and a reduction in American casualties, a key Bush adviser told me. “That’s a critical time,” he said. “It could set the tone for the rest of the race.”

[…]

This is the sound of wishful thinking… They are not in control of events, and neither are our few allies on the ground in Iraq. Osama bin Laden is in charge. He’s the other “candidate” in this presidential race.
And he’s winning.

[…]

Bin Laden’s bet was, and is, that the United States is too weak-willed and economically vulnerable to last for long in a war against jihadis motivated by centuries of hatred for the West.

I think he’s overdoing it a bit and oversizing Osama Bin Laden’s actual weight, but still it’s interesting to explore this line of thought and see how much power certain people or groups can have over elections.

Leave a comment