Joel Mowbray

In his speech announcing the selection of John Edwards as his VP pick, perhaps the most important news was what presidential wannabe John Kerry didn?t say.

Not one mention of the enemy we are fighting, or how he plans to lead us in that fight.

And not only did Kerry not mention Iraq, he didn?t even utter the words ?al Qaeda? or ?radical Islam.?  Nor did ?terror? or ?terrorism? pass through his lips.

His sole line relating to anything international suggests that Kerry would like to return to the failed foreign policy that helped create the world before 9/11.

In one of Kerry?s most-hyped and best-covered speeches of his entire political career, the Democratic challenger spelled out what would be important to a Kerry-Edwards administration. 

There were obligatory discussions of overcrowded schools, ?the great divide in America,? and about creating good-paying jobs to replace those lost to free trade.  There was an apparent call for socialized health care, and Kerry chastised what he saw as the construction of too many prisons.  And what would a speech by a Massachusetts liberal be without a plea to expand Head Start?

Kerry did talk about ?fighting? and the need to ?liberate??but he wants to fight for ?jobs? and ?common sense? and the country he felt needed liberation was the United States, from Middle East oil.

His one knowing nod to Iraq was a remarkable rip at Bush, implying that the Commander-in-Chief intentionally lied about Iraq before ?sending young America?s sons and daughters into harm?s way.? 

What Kerry neglected to add was that he was privy to the same intelligence Bush had before voting to authorize the war in 2002.  Was Kerry suggesting that Bush somehow forged or exaggerated intelligence, even though none of the myriad commissions or panels has even hinted at that?  That?s one of the few logical inferences, and he did nothing to dispel such an impression.

For a window into Kerry?s political soul, look at the following quote: ?(John Edwards) shares my unshakable commitment to ? restoring old and rebuilding new alliances that make America stronger.? 

This was not simply a dig at the ?coalition of the willing,? a favorite target of the anti-war crowd, but it was a hat tip to the so-called ?realism? embraced by career diplomats at the State Department.

For the man with self-proclaimed ?better hair,? his Tuesday speech was merely the latest in a series of declarations of support for State?s worldview.  In the Washington Post last Sunday, he wrote longingly of his desire for a foreign policy ?that finally includes a heavy dose of realism.?

Joel Mowbray

Joel Mowbray, who got his start with, is an award-winning investigative journalist, nationally-syndicated columnist and author of Dangerous Diplomacy: How the State Department Threatens America's Security.

Be the first to read Joel Mowbray's column. Sign up today and receive delivered each morning to your inbox.