From NBC's Mark Murray
We referred to it in First Thoughts, but we didn't post it last night (since we had left the office when it came out), but here is the entire Clinton memo responding to the earlier Obama missive.
To: Interested Parties
From: The Clinton Campaign
RE: Obama vs. Obama: The Real Differences on Iran
Who said this?
"Such a reduced but active presence will also send a clear message to hostile countries like Iran and Syria that we intend to remain a key player in this region." Later in the same speech, he said: "Make no mistake, if the Iranians and Syrians think they can use Iraq as another Afghanistan or a staging area from which to attack Israel or other countries, they are badly mistaken. It is in our national interest to prevent this from happening."
George Bush? Nope.
The latest from Dick Cheney? Guess again.
Language from Kyl-Lieberman? Sorry.
That was Senator Obama in late 2006 making the case for why maintaining a military force in Iraq is necessary to constrain Iran's ambitions. But that was then.
This is now: Stagnant in the polls and struggling to revive his once-buoyant campaign, Senator Obama has abandoned the politics of hope and embarked on a journey in search of a campaign issue to use against Senator Clinton. Nevermind that he made the very argument he is now criticizing back in November 2006. Nevermind that he co-sponsored a bill designating the Iranian Revolutionary Guard a global terrorist group back in April. Nevermind that his colleague from Illinois – Dick Durbin – voted the same way as Senator Clinton on Kyl-Lieberman and said "If I thought there was any way it could be used as a pretense to launch an invasion of Iran I would have voted no."
Today, in order to justify his opposition to Kyl-Lieberman, Senator Obama says that such language is bellicose and gives the President a blank check to take the country to war.
But if Senator Obama really believed this measure gave the President a blank check for war, shouldn't he have been in the Senate on the day of the vote, speaking out, and fighting against it? Instead he did nothing, remained totally silent, skipped the vote and spoke out only after the vote to engage in false attacks against Senator Clinton. A Washington Post editorial summed it up best: "Now, trailing in the polls and sensing a political opportunity, Mr. Obama is trying to portray Ms. Clinton as a reckless saber-rattler. That is irresponsible and -- given the ease with which the charge can be rebutted -- probably naive, as well."
That's not the kind of and strength and leadership Americans are looking for in their next President.
Hillary has been clear and consistent in saying that diplomacy backed by economic pressure is the best way to check Iran's efforts to acquire a nuclear weapons program and stop its support of terrorism, and the best way to avert a war. That's why she took to the Senate floor last February and warned the President not to take military action against Iran without going to Congress first and it's why she's co-sponsored Senator Webb's legislation to make that the law of the land.
That's the kind of strength and experience that will lead to the changes Americans want in our nation's foreign policy.