Blowing off the Iraq disaster

Published September 22, 2004 9:02PM (EDT)

Even as a grim collage of mounting insurgent attacks, civilian beheadings by terrorists, and the general spread of chaos continues to darken the long shadow that's fallen over Iraq, the Bush campaign is launching a new TV ad focused on some other really, really important stuff. It seems they have a problem with their opponent's choice of leisure sport, and what it might say about his integrity. In the new spot, titled "Windsurfing", BC '04 cleverly flogs its Kerry flip-flopper theme, this time by showing Kerry tacking back and forth across the water, and announcing "John Kerry: whichever way the wind blows."

While the Kerry camp has taken much criticism for being too slow to respond to the Bush camp's cheap-shot tactics, they're wasting no time in fighting back now. Taking to the airwaves with a new ad of their own, the Kerry camp today is condemning President Bush for ignoring "the Iraq quagmire," while running the juvenile and tasteless attack ad. Their response, titled "Juvenile", will air in the same markets as the new Bush spot.

Campaigning in Florida today, John Edwards further expressed his dismay at Bush's flippancy.

"Today George Bush is laughing again," he told reporters in Miami. "Over a thousand Americans have lost their lives, Americans are being beheaded. Iraq is a mess and they think this is a joke."

By Mark Follman

Mark Follman is Salon's deputy news editor. Read his other articles here.

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