I just heard Fred Thompson berate Huckabee for his complaint that the Pakistanis misappropriate our aid money to their military for purposes other than combating Al Qaeda. Of course, what Huckabee was actually referring to, unless I am very much mistaken, was the problem that Pakistan has been using military aid funding to bolster their military strength on the border with India. Contra Quin Hillyer, Thompson came off sounding like a buffoon. Remind me again why we’re supposed to think Huckabee is weak on foreign policy and Thompson is not? Because he’s advised by the Vice President’s daughter? Not much of a recommendation.
P.S. I think I have been a bit too hard on Huckabee’s foreign policy views because of his NIE blunder. He has been improving in this area over the last couple of months. As I said before, his Foreign Affairs essay did show some decent understanding of Pakistan, and tonight’s performance confirms that. As for Fred, anyone advised by Liz Cheney is going to make foolish statements.
Update: Thompson really is desperate to go after Huckabee tonight. He knows that he has to tear the man down to survive in South Carolina, but it’s just not working.
Second Update: Via Ambinder, Joe Scarborough makes it clear that he doesn’t like Fred Thompson’s debate performance. I think that invite to Chuck Norris’ ranch won him over to Huck’s side.