Obama Rebukes MoveOn In Patriotism Speech

07/08/2008 05:12 am ET | Updated May 25, 2011

Barack Obama used a speech on patriotism to rebuke MoveOn.org's "General Betray Us" ad last year:

Caricatures of left and right . . . most evident during our recent debates about the war in Iraq, when those who opposed administration policy were tagged by some as unpatriotic, and a general providing his best counsel on how to move forward in Iraq was accused of betrayal.

The line was a reference to the MoveOn.org ad in advance of General Petraeus' testimony last fall.

Obama also voiced his opposition to any attacks on John McCain's patriotism:

For those like John McCain who have endured physical torment in service to our country -- no further proof of such sacrifice is necessary. And let me also add that no one should ever devalue that service, especially for the sake of a political campaign, and that goes for supporters on both sides.

Some have read the line as an implicit criticism of Obama supporter Wesley Clark's comment, in reference to John McCain's commander-in-chief credentials, that "I don't think riding in a fighter plane and getting shot down is a qualification to be president." Obama later sent out a statement saying he "rejects" Clark's comment.

Suggest a correction