FRONT PAGE CONTRIBUTOR
Say What? Now Barack Obama claims he wanted to join the military in 1979, but didn’t because U.S. wasn’t at war
Asked by George Staphanopoulos this morning whether or not he had ever considered serving in the military, Democratic presidential nominee and freshman Senator from Illinois Barack Obama had the following to say:
“You know, I actually did. I had to sign up for Selective Service when I graduated from high school.
And I was growing up in Hawaii. And I have friends whose parents were in the military. There are a lot of Army, military bases there.
And I actually always thought of the military as an ennobling and, you know, honorable option. But keep in mind that I graduated in 1979. The Vietnam War had come to an end. We weren’t engaged in an active military conflict at that point. And so, it’s not an option that I ever decided to pursue.
Interestingly enough, that claim never made it into either of the two memoirs Obama penned, despite the aggregate 848 pages the presidential candidate (and his ghostwriter) spent talking about himself within those two books.
Then again, Barack Obama was not a presidential nominee at the time that those books were published. Given the radical changes Obama has attempted to make since he became a serious contender for the Democrat presidential nomination – let alone since becoming the nominee – on such issues as Iraq (and on the ‘surge‘), abortion, the DC gun ban, FISA and telecom immunity, welfare reform, the death penalty for child rapists, debating John McCain “anywhere, any time,” the financing of his campaign, and many others, I think it’s probably well beyond safe to assume that this is yet another concocted revision of history being floated by Obama in a desperate attempt to capture voters on the right side of the aisle.
Unfortunately, lying about wanting to join the military (but deciding against it because “we weren’t engaged in an active military conflict at that point” – as though the community organizer would have dived into the service had there been a chance to actually face combat) isn’t likely to win over too many pro-military voters on the right, given who the GOP nominee is.
Even if this is simply an attempt to fight Obama’s self-imposed appearance of a lack of patriotism, making a claim like this gives off the appearance of dishonest opportunism at best. The United States is at war, and Obama is the only member of either ticket to have no “skin” in the game.
Though he refuses to use him as a campaign prop (can you imagine Obama doing the same if it were his son?), John McCain, Republican presidential nominee, has one son who is an Iraq veteran with the USMC and another who is a Cadet 1st Class at the Naval Academy and prospective Marine. Sarah Palin, the GOP’s vice presidential nominee, has a son who is heading to Iraq this month as a member of an Army Infantry unit.
Even Joe Biden, the 36-year Senate incumbent whom Obama chose as his running mate on the Democratic ticket, has a son who is deploying to Iraq as a Judge Advocate General, or a military lawyer.
Obama alone is without any connection whatsoever to military service past or present (save for his maternal grandfather and maternal great uncle’s service in WWII) – a circumstance which, it appears, is beginning to make the freshman Senator feel more than a bit inadequate. Unfortunately for Obama, there is nothing within the realm of fact he can employ to address this gnawing inadequacy; so, as a result, he resorted to his usual reaction to such a situation: he made something up.
This trial balloon of Obama’s should be as short-lived as his one-event-only fake presidential seal.
However, regardless what he says about this in the future, we can be certain of one thing: he’ll claim that his stories and statements, on this like on every other flip and flop and historical revision he has engaged in, were “entirely consistent” the whole time.