Iraqi ethnic cleansing, a "positive thing"? That's what Barack Obama seemed to say on this morning's "Today." The Dem presidential contender spoke with substitute co-anchor David Gregory on the heels of Meredith Vieira's ill-tempered interview of Condoleezza Rice.
View video here.
DAVID GREGORY: You heard Secretary Rice say there is progress in Iraq that cannot be ignored. She spoke about when, not if, the United States prevails in Iraq. Do you see it that way?
BARACK OBAMA: I think it's important to understand that after two days of testimony [by Gen. Petraeus and Amb. Crocker], here's the bottom line: that having put an additional 30,000 troops in, and continued the same course we were on, we are now back to the horrendous levels of violence that we were back in June of 2006.
So there's no doubt that we've seen some measured progress in Anbar province, primarily because the Sunni tribal leaders made a political decision there that they would work with the coalition forces. We've seen a very modest reduction of violence in Baghdad, partly because entire neighborhoods have essentially been ethnically cleansed. Those are all positive things, but we are now back at the levels of violence we were 18 months ago.
Do I think Obama believes that ethnic cleansing is a "positive thing"? No. But he said it, and made the "positive thing" comment immediately after speaking of the ethnic cleansing. This is yet another Obama gaffe, further proof he's a not-ready-for-prime-time player.
I expect the Hillary campaign to pick up on this. Will the MSM? Can you imagine the woe that would betide a Republican who came within a million miles of suggesting that ethnic cleansing is a "positive thing"?