mccain sad As I was flying home from NYC’s great Jewlicious pow-wow, I watched on the JetBlue screens a new aspect to this race. Conventional wisdom has given McCain an edge in Foreign policy. He has traveled abroad. He is billed as having a lot of FP experience. He speaks Vietnamese I presume.

So it was with a mix of astonishment and amusement that I absorbed the strange comments of McCain, and later his spokesman when asked by an interviewer about if he would invite Prime Minister Zapatero of Spain to the White House.

During an interview in Miami earlier this week with Spanish-language station Union Radio, a reporter asked McCain whether, if elected, he would receive Zapatero in the White House. McCain answered, “Honestly, I have to analyze our relationships, situations and priorities, but I can assure you that I will establish closer relationships with our friends, and I will stand up to those who want to harm the United States.” (

In the quote he clearly thinks that Zapatero is from a country in Latin America with potentially hostile intentions against America. Now I now that Spain and the USA were competitors in the Olympic Basketball match-up. And there may be some bad blood out there because Spain pulled out of Iraq.

However, more likely it was that McCain got confused. Again.

Then the campaign went on record as saying he was not confused:

Mr McCain’s foreign policy adviser, Randy Sheunemann, said that there was no doubt about the senator’s answers.

“The questioner asked several times about Senator McCain’s willingness to meet Zapatero, and identified him in the question, so there is no doubt Senator McCain knew exactly to whom the question referred,” he wrote in an email to the Washington Post.

“Senator McCain refused to commit to a White House meeting with President Zapatero in this interview,” he confirmed.

McCain is so tough that he will not only refuse to meet with enemy leaders, but he will also assume that all leaders have it out for America until shown otherwise.

And for the record, I thought of this title to the post BEFORE I saw Time had it.

About the author

Rabbi Yonah


  • “In the quote he clearly thinks that Zapatero is from a country in Latin America with potentially hostile intentions against America.”

    I didn’t get that at all from what you posted. Could it be that he considers the party affiliation of Secretary Zapatero to be a sign of potential hostilities towards the US?

    “He speaks Vietnamese I presume.

    I’m not certain about Vietnamese, however he does speak fluent Spanish, a skill that may aid him in speaking with Secretary Zapatero, should the need arise.

    “McCain is so tough that he will not only refuse to meet with enemy leaders, but he will also assume that all leaders have it out for America until shown otherwise.”

    Not necessarily, he doesn’t seem to preclude talks, but if they don’t like us, let them buy their own dinner.

  • He should invite Mr. Bean instead, which might be more worthwhile and the press wouldn’t notice the difference anyway. Also Mr. Bean might prove more competent than Zapatero whose comments on a range of issues are nothing but frivolous Euro-Trash.

  • I am having trouble seeing where you drew those conclusions from Senator McCain’s statement. Did McCain say somewhere that Zapatero is from Latin America?

  • Rabbi Yonah’s analysis on politics is usually so misguided and off-base, if not completely based off of misunderstandings, I wouldn’t be surprised if his interpretation of the Torah was as well. Here’s a hint: When you start an analysis off with your mind already made up, you are really no help to anyone. This whole post would be more honest if it read like this:

    McCain = Republican (though not exactly, to most Republicans) and…

    Republicans = dumb because…

    Rabbi Yonah and the Jewlicious crew = Democrats and everyone knows…

    Democrats = intelligent and openminded (because we say so!) 🙂 soooo….

    McCain = dumb, but now I need proof so….

    McCain was talking about Latin America in reference to speaking about Socialist, anti-American cock-sucker Zapatero… and duh….

    Spain != Latin America!, which proves….

    McCain = dumb!!

    See my logic guys!?! I’m sooo brainy! Now here’s some spiritual advice coming up later today for Shabbos. Take it with a grain of skepticism. I do.

  • No, sorry, in my rant I was going to add:

    “Rabbi Yonah and the Jewlicious crew (with the exception of Froylein)” but forgot, sorry! I’m all ears about any other blogger here who isn’t a lifelong Democrat. Seriously. 🙂

    I can image Jokes at a Jewlicious party:

    “George Bush is so dumb….”
    “McCain is so old…”
    “Palin is such a redneck…”

    Jews have historically been known as gifted comics, but recently, it’s sad at how boring most Jewish comedians have become, like Stewart, Bernhard, etc. And people who still think Bush = Idiot jokes are funny need to seriously check their filter.

  • Rebbe

    “Yes Moisheleh”

    “Is there a proper prayer for Lobster Newburg>”



  • Sashka, then again, I’m an observer from abroad that will not get to vote in the upcoming elections, and I hope that whoever becomes President will be a good one. Yet, applying my Central European standards, I cannot fail to notice the void of content, changes of attitude (particularly after “the ticket” was secured), and hypocrisy Obama supporters so willingly put up with.
    My parents used to be surprised at my being critical of Obama, so, even though they were on vacation, they watched his Berlin speech. My parents both were highly politically involved when they were younger; my father managed my (maternal) grandfather’s campaign when my grandfather ran for mayor (got 69% of votes), both are seriously used to profound as well as empty political blabber, and both my parents said after the Berlin speech, “He didn’t say anything at all. There just were catchphrases.” Initially, Obama supporters cherished him as “handsome”; now those very supporters snicker over Palin’s beauty. Sounds pretty sexist to me, but I’m only just a progressive / conservative / independent European, what would I know? Over here we say that you can tell a person’s personality by the people who befriend them. Doubleplusungood.

    But in all fairness, particularly Middle’s been critical of Obama. Also, if I’m not mistaken, Palin is his politician crush.

    Are there Jewlicious parties?

  • I am not a left winger and i am not a right winger

  • So Middle’s been critical of him just to make himself feel better about voting for him. Seriously, the odds that CK, Yonah, Middle, Mufti, Beth or any of the ladies here would actually consider McCain has got to be less than 99-1. That’s my main gripe, not who they will actually vote for, but the allusion that liberals are more “open-minded” than conservatives, when in fact, they’re perspective never changes and is more knee-jerk than Michael Moore’s appetite at an all you can eat buffet.

    Note to American Jew Democrats. Times have changed. You mean nothing to the party you once did, and just do their bidding. You have become useful, so to speak and I’ll leave it at that.

  • Alex, if that means any solace to you, all my Jewish friends in the US that run businesses are going to vote Republican. I don’t know how the other bloggers will vote; ck and Muffti are Canadian, so they might bear secret sympathies for people with moose experience on their CV. 😉

  • Yup, all of my Jewish friends that actually produce things, as in the business sector are voting against Barack because at minimum, they think his economic policies are as they put “insane”. However, all of the my Jewish trustafarian friends and those in acedemia, are voting for Barack, only because they think Republicans are evil of course. And these are the people teaching future American leaders. We’re fukt!

  • Thank goodness democratic Jewish liberals are intermarrying themselves out of existance. They would vote for a pro-abortion Hitler and screw Jewish Jews just like they did during the Holocaust. Let the goyim have them!

  • Yael, I don’t know. Her appointment seems to be mocking Obama in several regards. It’s almost as if the Republicans were saying, “You want a young, good-looking, social / political minority person with extreme religious views? We can offer you that, too! And, ooops, the political experience of our VP candidate is even less unimpressive than that of your Presdential candidate.”
    McCain rather seems to be on the same level as Biden, so tongue-in-cheek one could say that everything’s in balance.
    From my overseas point-of-view, I cannot help but wonder what kind of stuff one needs to smoke, drink, or eat to equal twenty years of befriending a rabid anti-Semite to a one-time attendance of a speech held by the head of J4J. Neither is “good”, but I know what’s worse. It’s problematic that US Jews on average appear to know little about Christian denominations’ various views on Judaism and Israel. Bashing of the Roman Catholic church is pretty common while, unbeknownst to many US Jews, theologically Roman Catholicism is most supportive of Jewish religious integrity (cf. Nostra Aetate, 4). Mainstream European Protestantism (mostly of the Lutheran variety) in practice has adopted a similar attitude, so neither actively seeks to missionize Jews. The more common varieties in the US (Puritanism, Methodism, Menonites, Baptists, Anabaptists, Latter-Day-Saints, Evangelicals etc.) are more extreme in their views as in that Jews have failed in maintaining the Covenant. Evangelical support of Israel, for instance, is based on the reasoning that this will be the land where Jesus will return to, so there needs to be “free access”. Accordingly, there not only is the explicit hope that Jews will convert to Christianity, but US Evangelical groups actively do missionary work in Israel. I once spoke to someone from Brooklyn who said he’s getting trained at a “Bible Institute” in there; his mission is to try to “submerge” in Israel, posing as a BT who’s recently discovered his Jewish roots and preaching the gospels to “the Jews of Jerusalem”. He had no qualms about abusing the logistical and financial help of aliyah organizations. Not every Evangelical is that extreme, mind you, but theologically speaking, there still needs a lot of learning to be done beyond one’s scope until someone may eventually understand the religious implications that come with the various political candidates. The situation doesn’t compare at all to European secularism in that regard. BTW, on an odd note, I asked a member of Neturei Karta who he’d be voting for; he reasoned that the economy was more important to America, so he’d likely vote Republican; he claimed that if he were to vote on “foreign policy” (= Israel), he’d want the candidate who’s worse for Israel: Obama.

  • “Does anyone here actually believe Palin would make a good VP?”

    I’m sure that she would be a great PR person for the conservative base. I think that she can handle being president of the senate. If she is a heartbeat away from the presidency, that is one heartbeat more than the equally thin-resumed Obama is.

    McCain crosses party lines, for better or worse. Obama doesn’t. I don’t see McCain dying any time soon. Look at his mother. I also see Palin buildinga resume, win or lose, and being the basis of the republican ticket in the next 4-8 years.

    With the exception of Cheney, who has been in the middle of the oval office since day one, I think that people are suddenly giving the VP role way too much credit for the day to day running of the country.

    That being said, I’m sure that the Naval Observatory is a nice place to spend 4-8 years.

  • First off, Mr. Z. is a foreign head of state, not a secretary. Secondly, he will be president of the EU in 2009-2010. McCain had better get his facts straight if he doesn’t want to sound like a liar. Not talk to the president of the EU at the WH? How lame is that? Oh, and let’s not forget that Spain is also providing troops for Afghanistan, but that is a fact the Republicans seem to forget. They need some piece Old Europe to replace France as the punching bag, now that Big Brother says we are friends with France again.

  • In fact, the more I think about it, the more that it seems like this is nothing more than sour grapes on McCain’s part. Mr. Z. made a campaign promise as a central part of his party’s bid. He followed through on that promise. I see no reason to punish an honest politician.

  • I understand that you hate America and want to see it destroyed and therefore you are butting into something that isn’t your business by telling us who WE should vote for, but every time we hear a foreigner support Obama he loses support.

    But ultimately yeah, just like the second (as the movies were made) Star Wars movie was The Empire Strikes Back, Obama will win and do great harm to America. You are going to have a great time for the next few years.

    But after that you will have the Return of the Palin, and America will emerge from the Obama years strong in our will and determination. Think Carter. After Carter came Reagan.

    So, yeah, you will have a great time seeing all the destruction in America with Obama, but in the end it will be all worth it for a President like Palin or Jindal.

    And quick honestly while I feel pretty confident that America will survive all of this, I can’t say the same for Israel. Obama will us his position to try to destroy Israel and I think he might succeed. But the good thing about this is that the backlash to this will be part of what brings Palin and/or Jindal to power.

  • Why would we want to talk to the EU? When looking back on the 21st century the EU will be seen as a bigger threat to humanity than the Islamic terrorists.

    If we are using Star Wars analogies here, the EU is the “Phantom menace”

    It doesn’t make all the other threats that Anakin and Obiwan fought less of threats just like it doesn’t make the Islamofascists less of a threat than they are and just like Anakin and Obiwan needed to fight the groups they fought we at this point of our history need to fight the Islamoterrorists.

    But it does mean that looking back on the 21st century it will be the EU not the Islamoterrorists who will be the Big Bad that we faced that century. They are a new Third Reich in the making.

  • Obama says he is “the One” we have been waiting for.

    Well, I don’t think he is “the One” but he sure foreshadows “the One”.

    But if you think Obama is popular “the One” will be all the more so.

    And he will come from the EU but I have his arrival still being a generation or so off.

  • Actually from what I hear Mr Z could actually be “The One”. I find that hard to believe because I have never heard of Mr Z and “The One” is supposed to have one thousand times the charisma of Obama and at least up to this point I haven’t seen that of Mr. Z. But then again “the One” is supposed to come out of nowhere and that would be the case if Mr Z. becomes very popular in the next few years.

    I still think “the One” is at least 20 years off but I will keep my eyes on Mr Z. just in case he is indeed “the phantom menace”.

  • I have been looking over some information regarding Zapatero and the following might indeed be true.

    Obama might indeed be an head fake.

    And Zapatero might indeed be “the One”.

    If Obama wins the election which indeed I think he will the fact that early in Zapateros rise there was Obama reminds me so much of another analogy beyond the so apt Phantom Menace one.

    Well since Obama isn’t “the One” I do believe he will not be re-elected. So that means that as Obama leaves the picture, the world scene Zapatero will still be rising.

    It makes me only half satirically wonder that when Obama does meet with Zapeteros in the White House he will say afterwards to his aides “He must become greater; I must become less. “

  • Perhaps Obama and Zapeteros work together at the early stages. Together they craft a “peace agreement” but before it is all signed and agreed upon 2012 comes along and the Americans due to all the bad things that are happening in America while he is off on his Middle east peace thing do not re-elect him. Leaving it to now this hyper popular Zapatero to finish up the peace process and get all the credit alone. Which of course is well deserved because it would be Zapatero all the way who was really crafting this thing.

    That would make it so America would not be on his side at the end which I had hoped, but wasn’t assured would be the case when it all comes down.

    I don’t think Obama is the anti-Christ but he could quite likely be the anti-John the Baptist.

  • I don’t know if I buy into this whole “antichrist” thing.

    But what I do find interesting is how Obama’s supporters keep saying that Obama is “the One”. And Obama himself says that he is “the One we have been waiting for”.

    Well the only “the One” I know people have been waiting for is indeed this “anti-christ”.

    So here is Obama and his supporters basically saying to the world that he is the Anti-Christ. What is the benefit of doing that? Does he think that he would then get votes because people who believe in the anti-christ would want to speed up the rapture or something like that.

    Again I don’t necessarily buy into this antichrist stuff, but if there was such a thing, Obama sure is acting like he is it.

    Another interesting thing which I hope is just a strange coincidence but the Mayan Calendar is supposed to end on or about 21 December 2012 and then some kind of cataclysm is supposed to take place.

    Well what I find so interesting about that date is that if Obama is elected 21 December 2012 is at the end of his first term. It is also after the 2012 elections. So say he loses in 2012. He would still be President until January 20th of the next year, but by 21 December 2012 he will certainly be in a panic about the pending lost of his power.

    We all know what has happened when other cult leaders felt the end was near. Jim Jones telling his followers to drink poisoned kool-aid, the whole thing with David Koresh, and the whole Comet cult. In ALL these cases the end of the cult ended with great destruction, and these cult leaders didn’t have the power that an US President has. Just think how destructive they could have been had they had such power. It is a frightening prospect indeed.

    I just find it odd how all these pieces seem to be coming into place. Coincidence? Well I sure hope so, but still these some to be some odd coincidences indeed.