Obama Must Move Beyond Adlai Stevenson to Give Hillary Clinton a Race


Everyone I know who knew Adlai Stevenson loved him — but also said that he wasn’t savage enough to win the presidency — or even if he did, to “be” president.
As things look now, Barack Obama is running an Adlai Stevenson campaign. He’s smart. He’s fresh. He’s inspiring to many, including me. But he’s also a bit of a triangulator. And he has not yet developed the cold, unsentimental confidence that a leader needs in reserve — at least I haven’t seen that in him yet.
Obama says he wants to differentiate himself from Hillary Clinton now — but he’s doing it in lukewarm, safe ways. He has my whole-hearted support in his views on reframing America’s Cuba policy — but he’s still sort of squishy on Iran. He believes in vigorous, aggressive engagement — but what about doing something real to preclude a war in the next year?
And what about the real issue in the Middle East? Israel and Palestine?
November will be a big month for the Middle East with November 15th being the date of release of Mohammed ElBaradei’s next IAEI report on Iran — and the Israel/Palestine Peace Summit will take place in Annapolis in a few weeks.
Helping to call for an end to the “fake efforts” in establishing Palestine and using his political weight to make the point that the only pro-Israel strategy for this country is not one that forsakes the Arabs in the region, or the Palestinians who have legitimate grievances that must be dealt with.
We’ll see if November turns out to be a month in which Obama diverges or generally runs parallel with Hillary Clinton.
And as for Hillary Clinton — “you” have the heavyweight status in the country now to call for a real solution in the Middle East — and to move beyond the incrementalism of the Bush administration on Israel, Syria, Iran, Iraq, and the rest. If you want to really leap-frog out of the quagmire America is in today, we need to jump into a new set of bargains that re-establish a regional and global equilibrium.
I think Hillary Clinton actually has the advisors and the vision to engineer a leap-frogging effort out of Bush’s nightmarish mess into something better and different — but she must resist the urge to bandwagon Bush’s Iran delusions and must get out of the zero sum game that she has been helping to promulgate when it comes to the balance between Israel and its neighbors.
I hope Obama rises to the challenge of saying what needs to be said about Palestine — because whether or not he wins, that challenge may move the Clinton camp to realize that they too must get out of Bush’s grooves in how the opportunities and constraints in the Middle East are defined.
— Steve Clemons


4 comments on “Obama Must Move Beyond Adlai Stevenson to Give Hillary Clinton a Race

  1. Matthew Gering says:

    First, I believe it’s worth mentioning that numerous media outlets have confirmed that the Donnie McClurkin “issue” referred to above is mostly a product of the Clinton campaign. They’ve been pushing this one behind the scenes, desperately hoping that it’ll gain some traction, and it hasn’t.
    Second, Obama isn’t being squishy on Iran. He countered that pathetic letter-writing attempt by the idiots who voted for Lieberman-Kyl and wrote legislation that says, in clear terms, that the president does not have the authority of Congress to conduct any military operations inside Iran, regardless of who’s a terrorist organization and who isn’t. He’s taking real action to avert a war with Iran, and I applaud his efforts.


  2. Robert Morrow says:

    Speaking of Hillary, her lesbian and bisexual tendencies are WELL KNOWN to political insiders, so that begs the question:
    http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-news/1919649/posts [lots of good info on this link]
    James Carville once said about Paula Jones who wild Bill had exposed himself to “Drag a hundred dollar bill through a trailer park, you never know what you might find.” With the Clintons who are the Ultimate in White Trash, anything is possible. Bill once told Gennifer Flowers that Hillary “has probably eaten more pussy than I have.” [Flowers, Passion and Betrayal, p.42] In fact, wild Bill would often tell his buddies, when they called him on his gargantuan womanizing, that Hillary “had eaten more pussy than I have.”
    In order to understand the Clintons, you first must understand the Jerry Springer lifestyle that they have lived for 36 years. Then you will understand why Hillary uses a secret police and criminal intimidation tactics to cover up all this chaos. For example the beating up of Gary Johnson on 6-26-92 and the criminal intimidation campaigns against many of Bill’s sex victims and girlfriends. Another example is the terror campaign conducted against Kathleen Willey in 1997-98: nailgunning her tires, stealing or killing her cat Bullseye, threatening the welfare of her children.
    Hillary’s history is that of a bisexual who was screwing both of her law partners Webb Hubbell (who is probably the real dad of Chelsea) and Vince Foster who was Hillary’s lover and emotional husband.
    So is Hillary hopping in the sack with her “body person,” that lovely lollipop Huma Abedin? My guess is yes.
    Thursday, November 01, 2007
    Hillary’s Lesbian Affair with Muslim Aide?
    I saw this tease tease teaser at Ace yesterday (no not this one) and knew it was just a matter of time before the bomb dropped. A sex scandal (woo hoo) of a top presidential candidate. Sounds salacious. Well it is. Check this out. No, no not this sex scandal, this one.
    This is from Michael Musto. I used to read him religiously when he was at Paper a zillion lifetimes ago — his stuff is legit.
    Nothing has been confirmed (!) but this is as juicy as juicy gets in the sordid sex scandal department. Who’d a thunk that Hiillary could have out sex scandaled the old hound dog. Ouch!
    Looks like Obama ’08.
    Boy those Democrats sure have been busy.
    And if anyone would know, wouldn’t it be the king – er, queen – of the Village Voice:
    As I recently said on MONICA CROWLEY’s radio show, whisper campaigns are claiming that HILLARY CLINTON is GAYLE KING–ing her aide de camp, the glamorous HUMA ABEDIN , an Indian/Pakistani goddess from Kalamazoo, Michigan. In other words, Hillary may be putting Huma out there in the press and purposely making her more visible as a pre-emptive strike that amounts to her hiding in plain sight. This way, no Republican can later say, “Who is this gorgeous babe who spends so much intimate time with Hillary that the Observer called her Hill’s ‘body person’? Was GENNIFER FLOWERS’s book right about Hillary’s sexual taste?” And does either of this couple have the balls to bottom?
    Mickey Kaus writes:
    Do you sense there is some large mass of dark matter, an unseen Scandal Star, the gravitational pull of which is warping the coverage of what seems, on the surface, a pretty dull presidential race? I do. So does Ron Rosenbaum. I thought the Dark Star was the Edwards affair allegation . But Rosenbaum says “everyone in the elite Mainstream media” knows about another juicy scandal that the LAT is supposedly sitting on. I guess this is proof that I’m not in the elite, because I don’t know what he’s talking about. … My vestigial Limbaugh gland tells me it must involve a Democrat, or else the Times would have found a reason to print it. … P.S.: If it’s just Richardson, that will be very disappointing.
    I’m placing my money on the lesbian-Hillary angle (I was the first to assert this publicly, Tues. 8 pm PST, with connection to the Ron Rosenbaum report).
    Here’s a picture of Huma Abedin. Huma Abedin. Huma Abedin.
    BigHeadDC posts a picture of “Abedin trailing Clinton and gay talk show host Ellen DeGeneres during a recent “girl’s only” trip to NYC.”
    From Wikipedia: “Abedin was born in Kalamazoo, Michigan to an Indian father and Pakistani mother, both Muslims. When she was 2 years old, the family relocated to Jeddah, Saudi Arabia. Abedin returned to the United States to attend George Washington University. [1]”
    From BigHeadDC :
    We’re still a bit incredulous on this one, but a top level U.S. Department of Justice official is telling Big Head DC that Michael Musto’s rumor about Hillary Clinton fooling around with one of her top female aides Huma Abedin is based in reality!
    “I am close enough to Hillary and Huma to tell you that this ‘rumor’ is true,” the official says. “It is well known inside her campaign that Hillary and Huma are an item.
    “If you call Hillary’s residence in DC first thing in the morning, Huma answers the phone,” the official continues. “Same thing late at night and on the road. It’s a closely guarded secret that Hillary’s inner circle guards at all costs.”
    Posted by Pamela Geller on Thursday, November 01, 2007 at 02:20 AM in White House


  3. weldon berger says:

    Obama may turn out to be a decent Senator once he gets the presidential bug out of his system, but he’s an annoying candidate. He’s unoriginal, and his “unifier” shtick is offensive. I don’t want a president who reaches out to bigots at the expense of his own constituency, as Obama did with his homophobic campaign event. The comparison to Stevenson is wholly unfair to the latter, who was never the marshmallow that Obama is.


  4. PissedOffAmerican says:

    “November will be a big month for the Middle East with November 15th being the date of release of Mohammed ElBaradei’s next IAEI report on Iran”
    The IAE who? Haven’t you heard, Steve? We are ignoring the IAEA reports. Unless of course you are the AIPAC website, in which case they are twisting the IAEA reports. Failing that, we can always try for the ouster of El Baradei…oops, forgot, we already tried that.
    Oh what the hell, we can always just lie about Iran’s nuclear capabilities, after all, it worked with Iraq.


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