UnNews:Obama Defends Iraq Position
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8 July 2008
ATLANTA, Georgia - Barack Obama defended his position on Iraq today, telling voters that his position has not changed. “Let me be clear,” Obama said forcefully, “I may or may not bring the Iraq war to a close when I am president of the United States of America.” Obama explained that his plan to withdraw troops by 1 to 2 combat brigades a month would mean that combat troops will be out of Iraq “between 16 months and 3 years or more."
“Assuming that I take office in January, and the generals on the ground agree it can be done, then that means that we would have our – we would still have our troops there for about 2 more years from now, if not longer or shorter,” he explained. Recently, Obama has come under fire for saying that he intends to “refine” his Iraq plan after he visits the country, suggesting that he may not stick to the proposed 16 month timetable. This morning, Obama’s chief strategist, David Axelrod, called the timetable a goal.
"16 months is the goal and he believes that is a reasonable goal, but obviously any president is going to listen, listen to the commanders on the ground and listen to the political conditions at the time," Axelrod said on MSNBC. Critics have also accused Obama of pandering to voters by shifting his positions towards ambiguity. However, Obama said today that he is “progressively and regressively in the Democratic camp” and blamed the criticism of him on unfounded cynicism.
“One of the things you find as you go though this campaign, is everyone has become so cynical about politics. That the assumption is you must be doing everything for political reasons,” he explained and added that voters don’t always have to agree with him. “We can agree on 90% of the things that are important 30% of the time, and on those other 10% we can agree and disagree.”
- Maria Gavrilovic "Obama Answers Criticism That He's Changing Positions". CBS News, July 8, 2008