Unfortunately for the safety of the United States, the fence between humorously gaffable and dangerous isn’t electrified, which might explain how easily Herman Cain crossed it on Bill O’Reilly’s show.
Cain, the former lobbyist, who is becoming better known for gaffes than pizza, told O’Reilly that if elected President, he would go to war with Iran. That’s right. On national, or should I say international, TV, Cain threatened one of the world’s arguably most dangerous leaders. Transcript and emphasis from NewsHounds.
Cain: “I would double the number of ballistic-missile defense capable ships that are (unintelligible) warships and strategically place them in the world. Iran understands only two things: economic pressure and our military might.”
O’Reilly: You’re gonna put the warships in the Persian Gulf? Because they’ll attack ‘em. You know they’re gonna try to do something if you do that with them there.
Cain: That would be perfectly alright because I believe that we have a superior capability.
O’Reilly: Then you’re in a shooting war with Iran. Do you really want that?
Cain: I don’t want that Bill, but if they fire first, we are going to defend ourselves…
O’Reilly: But isn’t that a provocation?…
Cain: No. They’ve already announced that they’re going to put their ships off our coast in international waters. That’s not a provocation. We’re trying to protect ourselves.
In another interview, he threatened China, the world’s second largest superpower, over a nuclear program he thinks doesn’t yet exist.
Yesterday, I was enjoying Cain’s candidacy. Today, I believe that even as a candidate, his rhetoric is potentially dangerous to national security.