Kamikaze Campaigning

Towards the end of World War II, the Japanese were growing desperate. They had lost the best of their pilots in the first year or two of the war against the United States, and had never instituted a first-rate program to replace them and fully train new ones. As a last-ditch effort to get some use out of half-trained young men who were most likely going to die anyway, they convinced them to pilot planes converted into “flying bombs” and deliberately crash into American and British ships. They were called “kamikaze,” or “Divine Wind,” after the storms that twice wrecked Mongol invasion fleets in the 13th century.

I’m starting to wonder if there is a similar mentality going on in the Hillary Clinton campaign.

A few weeks ago, an unpaid volunteer was caught forwarding on the “Barack Obama might be a secret Muslim” canard. She was let go.

Then another, more high-ranking campaign staffer did the same thing. They, too, were tossed aside.

Then Bill Shaheen, one of Hillary’s national co-chairmen (as well as one of her New Hampshire co-chairman) talked about how Obama’s admitted drug use as a youth might open him up to Republican questions of actual drug-dealing. That got him the axe.

Then former Senator Bob Kerrey, a strong Hillary backer, commented that Obama might be a “Muslim Manchurian candidate.” He had no official position with the campaign to lose, but he’s lost a lot of his former luster — I know I used to have quite a bit of respect for a man who not only earned the Congressional Medal of Honor, but dated Debra Winger.

In a matter of a couple weeks, four increasingly-prominent Hillary backers have gone down in flames while lashing out at Barack Obama.

I’m reminded of one of my favorite Jim Steinman/Meat Loaf lyrics:

“There’s desperation in the air/it leaves a stain on all your clothes/and no detergent gets it out.”

A little over sixty years ago, the Kamikaze corps inflicted a terrible toll on the American and British fleets — but, in the end, had a negligible effect on the outcome of the war. I suspect that Hillary’s Divine Winds will have even less of an effect.

But gosh darn it, they’re proving remarkably entertaining.

The American Imperative
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