Tuesday, June 17, 2008

A Little Of The Old In And Out

(image via msnbc)

In: Patty Solis Doyle. Inquiring Chattering Class minds want to know: Did Obama hire her as a "deliberate" snub of Hillary? Did Obama hire her to pave the way for Hillary as his running mate? Did Obama hire Doyle because she has strong experience at building an Hispanic-and-Women coalition (like she did, successfully, in California?) From Marc Ambinder in The Atlantic:

"I suspect that the truth here is either

"(a) that folks in the Obama campaign did not anticipate the reaction of some major Clinton donors and aides. After all, Hillaryland right now is beset by a case of recriminitus; After all, blaming Solis Doyle for the campaign's missteps is very much in right now; even neutral observers concede that her mistakes were major, and she has few defenders left. (Although: question: who made PSD her campaign manager?) Or..

"(b) maybe that the Obama campaign did anticipate the reaction and yet could not be bothered to care what a few Clinton donors and former aides think. There are lots of Obama aides and advisers who don't think that the feelings of Hillary Clinton's inner circle are terribly important right now."

(image via canada)

Out: Hamid Karzai, In The Hour Of The Wolf. The Taliban is on the rise, scoring strategic victories at will. This is, for the West, an embarassing, if brief, loss. And the fashionable President of Afghanistan, in the process, looks more like the Mayor of Kabul after a daring jailhouse rescue revealed the weakness of his regime. From the Foreign Policy Blog:

"On Friday and on into the weekend, I was amazed by just how little television coverage there was of the Taliban's audacious raid on a Kandahar prison. I've got nothing against Tim Russert, but it's a big story that the Taliban can operate so brazenly in Afghanistan's capital.

"..I doubt that a couple hundred Taliban could long resist a concerted counterattack from combined NATO and Afghan forces, which are flying in reinforcements from Kabul. But the Taliban's commanders sure seem to be advertising their operations in the press. As one told the AP, 'We've occupied most of the area and it's a good place for fighting. Now we are waiting for the NATO and Afghan forces.' What kind of operational security is that?

"My guess is that the intent here is not to win on the battlefield, but rather to score a propaganda victory and undermine support for the government of President Hamid Karzai. If Afghans start to believe that Karzai can't even control Kandahar, his supposed stronghold, they might start shading their loyalties in the Taliban's direction. That could have enormous benefits for the bad guys across the country, making it all the more urgent that the good guys win a decisive victory as quickly as possible."

The full post here.

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