McCain screws up basic Middle East facts again
Now he shows he's got a warped temporal representation of events in Iraq as well. In an interview with CBS, McCain claimed that "The Surge" enabled the "Sunni Awakening" or "Anbar Awakening" (where Iraqi Sunnis awoke to the fact Al Qaeda and other insurgents weren't really doing them any favors by blowing people up in their areas):
McCain: I don't know how you respond to something that is such a false depiction of what actually happened. Colonel McFarlane (phonetic) was contacted by one of the major Sunni sheiks. Because of the surge we were able to go out and protect that sheik and others. And it began the Anbar awakening. I mean, that's just a matter of history.The only problem is that "The Surge" came after the Sunni tribal leaders had already decided that the insurgency wasn't really to their liking. The surge was announced in January of 2007, and the troops didn't arrive for a couple months after that. The Sunni tribal leaders had already decided they didn't like Al Qaeda by then. Certainly the two phenomena overlapped, but to claim The Surge "began the Anbar awakening" is totally wrong. Next McCain will be claiming that The Surge lowered gas prices, reduced our budget deficit, and proved Fermat's last theorem.
Here's a big post on how CBS edited out McCain's error for the evening news broadcast.