The ever insightful Jim Lobe injects some perspective into the vacuous Beltway debate about Obama's alleged naivete in being committed to talking rather than shooting first in the Middle East.
Senators John McCain and Joseph Lieberman have been traveling around the country together repeatedly charging that Sen. Barack Obama’s foreign-policy ideas are “naive” and even “reckless.” But what they hope their audiences will forget is that both of them were taken in by the most-successful foreign-policy con man — and apparently a close friend of Iranian intelligence — of his generation, Ahmad Chalabi.
it seems frankly unseemly for the two of them to now charge Obama with being dangerously naive about foreign policy and what it takes to deal with crafty and malevolent Middle Eastern leaders, like Iran and its friends and allies. Not only were they completely taken in by Chalabi and the INC, but they were also, as Paul Wolfowitz now admits, completely “clueless” about what U.S. troops would face once they got to Iraq. And they obviously either failed to consult or disbelieved the Iraq experts in the State Department and the U.S. intelligence community, not to mention former Centcom commander Gen. Anthony Zinni, who had long before concluded that Chalabi was a con artist who could not be trusted.
With sophistication like that — in contrast to Obama’s naivete — a McCain administration would seem ripe for the picking by would-be Chalabis, if not by the master himself.