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John Kerry Owes Voters a Clear Foreign Policy Vision, Prof. Ken Bode Writes

September 10, 2004

September 10, 2004, Greencastle, Ind. - "For the 30-plus years since George McGovern lost to Richard Nixon, Democrats have been saddled with the perception of not being sufficiently strong on national security," writes Ken Bode in today's Indianapolis Star. "Some of his colleagues now are urging [John] Kerry to drop Iraq and move the campaign to domestic issues," adds DePauw's Eugene S. Pulliam Distinguished Visiting Professor of Journalism, who argues Kerry instead needs to better articulate where he stands on foreign policy issues.

Dr. Bode's weekly op-ed column continues, "For weeks, Kerry has been playing rope-a-dope, being hammered by the Swift Boat Veterans for Truth on television and by Bush and Cheney on the campaign trail. The Republican strategy has been to transform al-Qaida, 9/11, Iraq, Saddam and Osama into one ominous and continuing threat of terror and depict John Kerry as the son of McGovern, irresolute and indecisive on national security." 

However, the former CNN senior political analyst notes, "When Cheney took the terror alert to Code Red, saying the Kerry-Edwards ticket would make America more vulnerable to being hit again, he seems to have gotten Kerry's attention. Finally the Democratic nominee is putting together a full case against a pre-emptive war sold to the Congress and the public with bad intelligence and hollow threats ... But Kerry owes the country more. He has sufficient history of vacillating, nuancing and changing his mind that we ought to see at least a first draft of a Kerry Doctrine on foreign policy. Would he endorse pre-emptive wars in an age of terror? How would he deter potential threats? If Bush was wrong, how would Kerry do it right?"

Read the complete text at College News.org.

Access other recent columns by Ken Bode here, here, here, here, here, here, here and here.

Source: Indianapolis Star

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