Larry Elder

Q: Before your trip to Iraq, you said that you intend to give the military a "new mission" -- all of the combat troops withdrawn within 16 months. Why bother traveling to Iraq and consulting with commanders on the ground, if you've already decided on a new mission?

Q: In 2004, you called it unwise to announce a timetable. By 2008, however, you announce a 16-month timetable. Only a few days ago, your top campaign strategist stated that you were "not wedded" to that timetable. The next day, you reiterated your 16-month timetable, but added it's important not to "undo" our gains. Isn't this confusing?

Q: On Iran, you criticized Bush for leaving all options on the table up to and including a "military option." And during the campaign season, you criticized Sen. Clinton for voting to call the Iranian Revolutionary Guard a terror organization. But you later said that, as to Iran, all military options are on the table, and said that you consider the Revolutionary Guard a terror organization. Did the facts change or the politics change?

Q: You announced support for a two-state solution between the Israelis and the Palestinians, with Jerusalem as the undivided capital of Israel. The next day, you reversed course, leaving the disposition of Jerusalem a matter to be negotiated between the Israelis and the Palestinians. Can you clarify?

Q: You said you would sit down, without preconditions, with leaders like Mahmoud Ahmadinejad of Iran and Kim Jong Il of North Korea. You later agreed to hold such talks only under prearranged conditions. You further stated that such talks would occur only when and if you choose to hold them. Again, please clarify.

Q: You point to Kennedy's 1961 summit with Khrushchev, held without preconditions. But Kennedy's secretary of State, Dean Rusk, advised against the meeting, and Kennedy later declared the talks a disaster. Many historians say that Khrushchev sized up Kennedy as a novice, which emboldened Khrushchev in building the Berlin Wall and in putting missiles in Cuba. Is it wise to hold up the Kennedy/Khrushchev summit as a model?

Q: The Canadians recently agreed to accept 550 tons of yellowcake from Iraq. The Associated Press called it the remaining portion of Saddam Hussein's "nuclear program." David Kay, the weapons hunter, found no stockpiles of WMD, but maintained that Saddam Hussein possessed the intent and capacity to restart his chemical and biological program following the lifting of sanctions. Was President Bush, therefore, correct in saying that Saddam posed a "grave and gathering threat"?


Larry Elder

Larry Elder is a best-selling author and radio talk-show host. To find out more about Larry Elder, or become an "Elderado," visit www.LarryElder.com.