Q: What's the most significant -- let me ask it this way: what's the most gut wrenching decision you've ever had to make and how did you process that, come to that decision?
Barack Obama: Well, you know, I think the opposition to the war in Iraq was as tough a decision that I’ve had to make not only because there were political consequences but also because Saddam Hussein was a bad person and there was no doubt that he met America ill, but I was firmly convinced at the time that we did not have strong evidence of weapons of mass destruction and there were a lot of questions that as I spoke to experts kept on coming up, do we know how the Shiites and the Sunnis and the Kurds are going to get along in a post Saddam situation, what's our assessment as to how this will affect the battle against terrorist like al-Qaeda, have we finished the job in Afghanistan so I agonized over that and I think questions of war and peace generally are so profound you know when you meet the troops, they are 19, 20, 21-year old kids and you are putting them into harm's way there is a solemn obligation that you do everything you can to get that decision right. And now as the war went forward, very difficult about how long do you keep funding the war if you strongly believe that it's not America’s national interest at the same time you don't want to have troops who are out there without the equipment they need. So that all those questions surrounding the war have been very difficult for me.
John McCain: it was long ago and far away in a prison camp in north Vietnam. My father was a high ranking admiral. The Vietnamese came and said that I could leave prison early. And we had a code of conduct that said you only leave by order of capture. I also had a dear and beloved friend who was from California by the name Ed Alvarez who had been shot down and captured a couple years before me but I wasn't in good physical shape. In fact I was in rather bad physical shape.
So I said no. Now, in it of full disclosure, I’m very happy I didn't know the war was going to last for another three years or so. But I said no and I’ll never forget sitting in my last answer and the high ranking officer who offered it slammed the door and the interrogator said go back to your cell it's going to be very tough on you now. And it was. But not only the toughest decision I ever made but I’m most happy about that decision than any decision I’ve ever made in my life. I did finally say it took a lot of prayer, it took a lot of prayer.
17 August 2008
People Might Hate George Bush,
but this is a problem for the Democrats:
Posted by David at 10:44 AM