In February 2008, military leaders reacted to Senator Obama's presidential campaign, warning that he did not understand the threat of radical Islam or the larger picture of national security.
In fact, they asserted that if Obama were to win the presidency, it would mean "the Arab street" had been beaten the US: "They win, we lose."
With smoke rising around US embassies throughout the Middle East, the warnings of these military minds ring prophetic. Almost to a man, they said Obama had no knowledge of how national security works. To substantiate this claim, they pointed to Obama's promises to pull our troops out of Iraq if elected, as well as his continued, ongoing push for drone strikes in Pakistan without that nation's permission.
Retired Military officers warned that such an approach with Pakistan was a surefire way to lose an ally.
At the same time, Sen. Hillary Clinton was still in the race for the Democrat nomination and her campaign's tact also involved highlighting Obama's inexperience in foreign affairs.
Senator Obama's supporters, in response, cited the fact that he had visited Iraq once while a member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee.