Iraq slapfight: McCain plays the chickenhawk card on Obama, sort of

The “sort of” is there because Obama’s not a hawk, of course, but the basic chickenhawk faux logic abides: only a battle-tested veteran has the military acumen to know what the best course is in Iraq. And since there’s only one battle-tested veteran among all six of the major candidates (or seven if you count Fred!), we know who that must mean.

I told you yesterday that the chickenhawk thing was starting to boomerang on the left. And here we are:

“While Senator Obama’s two years in the U.S. Senate certainly entitle him to vote against funding our troops, my service and experience combined with conversations with military leaders on the ground in Iraq lead me to believe that we must give this new strategy a chance to succeed because the consequences of failure would be catastrophic to our nation’s security.

“By the way, Senator Obama, it’s a ‘flak’ jacket, not a ‘flack’ jacket.”

Obama must be kicking whichever moron aide of his misspelled “flak.” It’s a perfect opening to needle him particularly for his youth and lack of experience and the Dems generally for their perceived ignorance of and antipathy to military culture.

Mind you, this is but one of three hard shots he’s taken at Obama in the past 16 hours or so. Drudge is leading right now with the crack from his staffer that Barry O “wouldn’t know the difference between an RPG and a bong,” an obvious reference to his youthful drug use. But check out J-Mac’s original statement from last night that prompted Obama’s “flack jacket” response:

“This vote may win favor with MoveOn and liberal primary voters, but it’s the equivalent of waving a white flag to al Qaeda.”

Expect the next round to involve Obama reminding McCain that he had enough military acumen to oppose this “disastrous war” before it began, with McCain reminding him in return that he’s repeatedly criticized Bush’s conduct of the war and sniping that it’s easy to say how one would have voted in 2002 when one didn’t have to actually vote.

Mitt’s getting in his shots too. Attacking the Democrats is an easy way for him and McCain to gin up publicity and appeal to a base that’s suspicious of their conservative bona fides. I’m only surprised Rudy hasn’t come out swinging too. I guess the frontrunner doesn’t need to.

Update: The media scrambles quickly to Obama’s side.

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