Friday, October 01, 2004

Some salient points from yesterday's Bush-Kerry debate:

PRESIDENT BUSH: That's totally absurd. Of course, the U.N. was invited in.
And we support the U.N. efforts there. They pulled out after Sergio de Mello
got killed, but they're now back in helping with elections. My opponent says
we didn't have any allies in this war? What's he say to Tony Blair? What's he
say to Alexander Kwasniewski, of Poland. You can't expect to build alliance
when you denigrate the contributions of those who are serving side-by-side
with American troops in Iraq.

PRESIDENT BUSH: My opponent just said something amazing. He said,
Osama bin Laden uses the invasion of Iraq as an excuse to spread hatred for
America. Osama bin Laden isn't going to determine how we defend ourselves.
Osama bin Laden doesn't get to decide. The American people decide. I
decided. The right action was in Iraq.

PRESIDENT BUSH: The only thing consistent about my opponent's position
is that he's been inconsistent. He changes positions. And you cannot change
positions in this war on terror if you expect to win.

SENATOR KERRY: Jim, the President just said something extraordinarily
revealing and, frankly, very important in this debate. In answer to your
question about Iraq and sending people into Iraq, he just said, the enemy
attacked us. Saddam Hussein didn't attack us. Osama bin Laden attacked us.
Al Qaeda attacked us.

SENATOR KERRY:With respect to North Korea, the real story, we had inspectors and television
cameras in the nuclear reactor in North Korea. Secretary Bill Perry negotiated
that under President Clinton. And we knew where the fuel rods were, and we
knew the limits on their nuclear power. Colin Powell, our Secretary of State,
announced one day that we were going to continue the dialogue and work
with the North Koreans. The President reversed him publicly, while the
President of South Korea was here. And the President of South Korea went
back to South Korea bewildered and embarrassed because it went against his
policy. And for two years, this administration didn't talk at all to North Korea.
While they didn't talk at all, the fuel rods came out. The inspectors were
kicked out. The television cameras were kicked out. And, today, there are four
to seven nuclear weapons in the hands of North Korea. That happened on
this President's watch. Now, that, I think, is one of the most serious sort of
reversals or mixed messages that you could possibly send.

Now, with respect to Darfur, yes it is a genocide. And months ago, many of us
were pressing for action. I think the reason that we're not saying send
American troops in at this point is several-fold. Number one, we can do this
through the African Union, providing we give them the logistical support. Right
now, all the President is providing is humanitarian support. We need to do
more than that. They've got to have the logistical capacity to go in and stop
the killing, and that's going to require more than is on the table today.

Oh, yes! And Bush REALLY can't pronounce 'nuclear': he pronounces it as 'newkiller'. Interestingly, Harvard Professor, child prodigy and Nobel Prize winning physicist Julian Schwinger (Schwinger won the Nobel Prize with Richard Feynman) also used to say it the same way. Any connections?


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