Sunday, November 05, 2006

Wesley Clark Rallies for Dan Maffei in Syracuse

[New York Congressional District 25] This afternoon in Syracuse, about 200 Democrats came out to the Dan Maffei for Congress campaign office in North Syracuse for a rally at which General Wesley Clark attended and spoke. He arrived at about 1:45 pm and worked his way from the street through the crowd in the parking lot, smiling and greeting Maffei supporters as he and the Maffei team approached the microphones awaiting them near the front of the building.

Dan Maffei began the rally by saying that he is the alternative candidate who will, if elected, be sure that we change course - and not just in Iraq, but in Central New York as well. He promised that he would bring our young people back to Central New York and provide them with new and attractive opportunities. Young people will be exporting products and services from Central New York instead of us exporting young people from our area.

Chuck Harding, chair of the Salina town Democratic committee, came up to introduce General Clark. Having fought in the Vietnam war, Mr. Harding expressed his desire to see America changed for the better instread of the worse.

General Clark spoke for about twenty minutes, beginning by talking about America's reckless foreign policy in Iraq. He described the Bush administration's strategy as a failing mission with no end in sight, pointing out the fact that there is clear strategy for success.

In no uncertain terms, he said that Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld should resign his position at once. With the war in Afghanistan sliding into failure, we have seen the effect of the economy of force. Secretary of Defense Rumsfeld thought, when it came to the wars to which the Bush administration had committed our troops, that he could "do it on the cheap" - and he was wrong. Now we see Iran slipping away from our control - getting closer with each passing day to possessing nuclear weapons. Over five years after 9/11, Osama bin Laden is still on the loose. There are many more terrorists today than there were on 9/11.

"We are not winning," said General Clark "We are making more enemies than friends."

He said that there are some in Washington D.C. today who have their sights on "just another air campaign" - this time against Iran. When General Clark led the Supreme Allied Forces in Europe [the Balkans/Serbia/Kosovo] in the late 90s, he was able to win not only by air power, but also with Clinton administration diplomacy. The Bush administration has not used diplomacy for America's best interests and we cannot win any war by air campaigns alone. Without diplomacy., we stand to fail. General Clark warned that a change must come. "We cannot wait for 2008," said General Clark, "It must come now."

He explained that, when he was a General, he kept a troubleshooting list of his "top 40" reasons why he'd little or no success in certain battles. Below that list of 40 would be another list of 40. The secret, he found, was that Generals and top brass could plan and guide and command all they could, but in the end, it is the soldiers and only the soldiers who win the battles. He told those in the audience that Dan Maffei was a superior candidate, and he is capable of being a great leader, but it is only the supporters who will be able to win the battle on the ground in the next 48 hours.

On that encouraging note, he joined hands with Dan Maffei and raised them high in the air to a hearty round of cheers and applause.

[R to L] Dan Maffei and fiancee Abby; Brady the canine Maffei supporter waits for Gen Clark to arrive; General Clark signs his name for a supporter.

[R to L] A crowd of Maffei supporters; "Honk For Maffei" cheerleaders; Walking with Dan Maffei, General Clark is shaking hands as he arrives.

[R to L] Dan and General Clark greet supporters as they approach the podium; Greet supporters; Have their photo taken together.

[R to L] Walking through the crowd; Dan Maffei begins the rally; Speaking to the enthuisiastic audience.

[R to L] General Clark smiles at the supporters as Dan speaks; Dan finishes his speech; General Clark is brought to the mike.

General Clark tells the audience why they can't wait until 2008 for a change. Change must come now.

The crowd cheered as General Clark, Dan Maffei, Abby, and Charles (Chuck) Harding raised their joined hands.

Together, Dan Maffei and General Clark greeted more supporters after the rally.

Thanks to Lisa, I had my own photo taken with General Clark.

* * Crunchy Frog has this great video at YouTube!

*Update: Former president Bill Clinton appeared at a rally in Rochester on Monday morning to support congressional candidates Dan Maffei and Eric Massa. He said, "These races are still pretty close and we've got to get our votes out. And there are still people who will go to the polls tomorrow, not entirely sure of who they're going to vote for because, frankly, a lot of these people never voted for us before." [Photo credit: WROC TV Rochester].


benny06 said...

Hey Jude,
So you have gotten to see quite a few Dems in the past few weeks. How did General Clark stack up compared to the ones you saw in NY and NC?

I like your new place and on my little lilly pad I noted your new address. Cheers, Benny

Iddybud said...


General Clark did an excellent job of revving up the Democrats faithful up here in Central NY. I've seen former President Bill Clinton [the rock star], Senator John Edwards [our future - a great, heartful, and hopeful communicator], and General Clark [a down to earth and confident energizer] rally for 2006 candidates in the past few weeks. I think that each of them are unique and inspiring. I think it's wonderful that they give their time out here for our candidates. I have found that their message is, for all intents and purposes, the same - a unified effort to throw the rubber-stamp bums out of our House and Senate. What I appreciated about General Clark's message is that he included General-like advice and inspiration, as only a General can do, on how to be all we can be as foot soldiers for our respective candidates. He told us that only we, like soldiers, can win the battles for our candidates. I'm putting my helmet on as we speak.... ;)

Glad you like the new site - my old one was so slow to load. I tried fixing it, but I think it was FUBAR.

OTTMANN said...

LOL, Clinton and Clark (Rally?) only means doom for the left. The small group of supporters shown in the pics tells me all I need to know about outcome of this election.

Thanks for posting them!

Iddybud said...

For me, it's generally not interesting to see anonymous posters leaving snarky comments, but if you get off on it, then I hope it's made you feel warm and fuzzy, dear.

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