At Least He Didn't Promise To Invade Norway...
As for Dion's actual comments, here they are:
"We are going to have to discuss that very actively if they [the Pakistanis] are not able to deal with it on their own. We could consider that option with the NATO forces in order to help Pakistan help us pacify Afghanistan."
Wow! That's a totally...non-controversial opinion. What Dion was getting at is a perfectly valid argument - the At Issue Panel on CBC said as much last night. You won’t get stability in Afghanistan and the region unless Pakistan does something about its border and stops harbouring terrorists.
But the problem, as is so often the case, isn’t one of content but of communication. I don’t think there’s any doubt what the Tory message is going to be next campaign and the ambiguity in these comments plays right into that. The National had a clip of Mansbridge interviewing Dion last night and, when asked what his solution was, Dion started to answer “I don’t have any solutions” before quickly correcting himself to “I don’t have a magical solution” - if he hadn’t caught himself when he did, the Tories would be making their next attack ad buy right now (they still might).
Foreign policy seems to get everyone into hot water no matter how much of an expert they are. We know the Tories will distort every word come campaign time, so Dion is going to have to get his talking points down cold to make sure he doesn’t fall victim to another “Obama moment”.