Virtual Town Hall on Iraq

Join MoveOn.org's Virtual Town Hall: Iraq

Click on the above banner to check out YouTube video clips from the forum on Iraq hosted by MoveOn.org. They invited seven potential democratic candidates for the next presidential election (Joe Biden, Dennis Kucinich, Bill Richardson, Barack Obama, John Edwards, Hillary Clinton, and Chris Dodd, listed in the order I found their responses interesting and enlightening, although I recommend watching them all) to answer three questions each about the war in Iraq.

I was very appreciative of the chance to get to know some of the potential candidates, and hear them speak on their positions on the Iraq war. I'll outline some of my opinions in response to watching all the clips, but I strongly recommend you check them out yourself and form your own opinions. I believe very strongly in the importance of being informed about our options, because I have come to be somewhat shocked and horrified by the power the American President has in the world, and it is my sincere hope that the next person we give that power to will be one who intends to use it for healing, diplomacy, reconciliation, and improving the state of the world, rather than out of selfishness, economic interests, power, and diplomatic ignorance.

Here are my thoughts. I don't know a ton about any of the candidates outside of this forum (to my shame), so this is just a response to ten minutes each of responses, and should be taken with an according dose of salt. But I was particularly impressed with Kucinich's general approach to things, and he struck me as the person most interested in doing truly positive things with the presidency. Biden seemed to be the most knowledgeable about the actual political/religious situation in Iraq, and the best way of moving away from civil war and chaos in the wake of our invasion in the context of that situation. I thought Richardson, Obama, and Edwards all had interesting things to say. Clinton worried me with her self-focused mode of speech, which I hoped would not translate into her failing to see herself as part of a wider collection in her political actions. It didn't seem to be the kind of humble, diplomatic approach I hope our next president employs.

Anyway, I really do encourage you to take the 70 minutes to watch these clips, or you can read the transcripts if you prefer that, to get a better picture of what the candidates are saying and doing in response to the Iraq war. Thanks, and enjoy!


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