Colin Powell: All is forgiven
I used to be an ardent admirer of Colin Powell, and always followed his career closely. One reason for my unusual interest in Powell may have been that we shared some common elements in our personal backgrounds. We were both born in Harlem, both had foreign-born parents, and both were raised in the South Bronx. And then, of course, we both also served in the Army. But that's an even bigger stretch.
I lost my respect for Powell, however, when he failed to quit as Secretary of State in the Bush Administration after objecting to the invasion of Iraq. He recently said he spent 2-1/2 hours trying to persuade President George W. Bush not to invade. It was particularly disappointing that he allowed himself to be disgraced when he appeared before the United Nations to defend the invasion.
All is forgiven now that Powell has endorsed Barack Obama to be President. He declared his support for Obama in the eloquent style that I had always associated with Powell. His critique of the Bush Administration was so penetrating and his assault on John McCain's Presidential campaign tactics so devastating that it erased whatever hard feeling I had harbored about the former Secretary of State.
I am amused by Pat Buchanan's denunciation of Powell's Obama endorsement. Buchanan made a big deal of the fact that Powell's career was largely promoted during Republican Administrations, starting as an Army major on the White House staff when Richard Nixon was in office. Powell was subsequently named National Security Adviser and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff during the administrations of Ronald Reagan and George H.W.Bush and then was appointed Secretary of State by George W. Bush.
Buchanan complained that Powell was therefore disloyal to the Republican Party because he has failed to show his appreciation to the party for his meteoric career success.
By endorsing Obama, Powell has actually shown a greater loyalty to his country for he recognizes that Obama is a better choice for the Presidency than John McCain.