The Corner

October Surprise?

Over the weekend, Gabe Schoenfeld speculated about an October Surprise by one or another foreign goons to help Obama get elected, like the Spanish train bombings helped the Socialists win in 2004. I can see why Hamas or Iran or Chavez might want that, but it’s not obvious to me that circumstances are such that they’d know what specifically to do. For instance, would a series of especially spectacular attacks in Iraq help Obama and undermine McCain’s claims of progress? Maybe, but if such attacks included a significant number of deaths of American troops, it might rekindle feelings of revenge. Or if the attacks reprised the use of retarded women to blow up puppies, the revulsion at such depravity might overcome Iraq fatigue. Or, as Gordon Chang points out, maybe Iran would temporarily appear reasonable as a way of endorsing Obama’s offer to talk with them. But that could also be taken as evidence that American resolve caused the Iranians to cry uncle, a la Qaddafi after the invasion of Afghanistan. Or not. My point is that I don’t think anyone, here or abroad, really can have any idea how any of these scenarios would work out.


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