Friday, September 12, 2008

Obama on the O'Reilly Factor, Final

In the final part of o'Reilly's interview with Obama the two men discuss energy independence. Watch as O'Reilly gives Obama a hard time because of his reluctance to build nuclear plants and to drill on American soil. They then move on to foreign policy. O'Reilly brings up his favourite topic of NATO in Afghanistan and the refusal of the "cowardly" Europeans to fight. This of course is not true. In fact the most volatile part of Afghanistan, Helmand Province, is under British occupation. Obama rightly reminds the Cavan man that the French lost ten soldiers in an ambush last week and that part of the reason the Germans don't fight is because of the relationship that Bush carelessly soured with Berlin. For all those Conservatives that like to mock Obama's ability to communicate and persuade they should take note of this. They then discussed the thorny issue of the missile defence shield in Poland and the Czech Republic. O'Reilly got Obama on record to say that he would keep the shield if elected. Personally I am disappointed to hear this. As I have said before on GUBU, if the shield is to protect Europe why does Washington have to pay the Poles to allow American to protect them. It will achieve nothing except anger the Russians unnecessarily. Furthermore, O'Reilly talks about the Russian threat and then asks "are you going to keep the shield". I thought the shield was aimed at protecting Europe from rogue states, not Russia. This is vital because if the shield is aimed at Russia, as O'Reilly implied, then it would be raising the stakes in the arms race forcing Moscow to respond. They finish off by discussing Putin and how best to deal with Russian aggression. Enjoy !

Over all I think Obama handled himself well in front of O'Reilly. Some say it wont make much of a difference because only McCain supporters watch the O'Reilly factor. I disagree. I think more independents watch O'Reilly than most appreciate, even if just for entertainment value. I think he definitely helps his campaign at a time when McCain Palin have been enjoying a serious increase in their popularity.

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