CINCINNATI (TDB) -- The fantasy notion that Democratic Sen. Barack Hussein Obama would be some kind of radical Muslim mole in the White House might crumble if more people knew about retired four-star Gen. Merrill A. McPeak. McPeak was the Air Force chief of staff in the first Gulf War, when Saddam Hussein's military was pretty much pulverized during a bombing campaign. The general is now supporting Obama, and appears in a political ad for the Illinois senator which is available here.
The Obama campaign does not appear to have used the ad in Ohio. McPeak, a combat fighter pilot who served in Vietnam, retired in 1994. He stumped for Obama in Iowa and says the Illinois senator should become the next president. McPeak does not question Obama's patriotism; in fact, he see the senator as having superior judgment than "the old Washington hands (who) let us down." The general's endorsement seems to shoot down the fantasy that Obama's middle name, Hussein, should carry negative weight in the presidential contest. After all, he sent waves of jets to destroy Saddam Hussein's forces.
McPeak's official biography on the U.S. Air Force Web site is here. He had more than 6,000 flight hours in jet fighters that include the F-4, F-15, F-16, F-100, F-104 and F-111. The air war against Saddam Hussein led by McPeak help clear the way for the liberation of Kuwait. McPeak, however, did not support the invasion of Iraq under President George W. Bush. He said Obama had the foresight to oppose it from the start.