Cain's excruciating answer on Libya

Herman Cain's evident confusion in response to a complete softball on Libya from the editorial board of the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel may be even more painful to watch than Rick Perry's recent debate gaffe:

Here's Adam Serwer's summary:

"President Obama supported the uprising correct? President Obama called for the removal of Gaddafi? Just want to make sure we're talking about the same thing before I say yes, I did agree or no, I didn't agree." Cain then added, "I do not agree with the way he handled it for the following reasons...Nope that's a different one...Got all this stuff twirling around in my head..." Finally Cain asks for a more detailed question. "Specifically what are you asking me did I disagree or not agree with Obama?"

As I've said, I could care less whether a candidate can rattle off the names of world leaders. But if a question that basically boils down to, "Libya, what do you think about that?" throws you for a loop, that's a problem. 

Passport

Armenian-American groups blast Condoleezza Rice as 'genocide denier'

Eurasianet reports that Armenian-American groups have not responded well to Condoleezza Rice's new memoir, in which she discusses her efforts to quash a Congressional resolution labeling the post-World War I killing of ethnic Armenians by Turkey a genocide:

While acknowledging the brutality and the scale of the bloodshed, Rice writes that US recognition of the act as genocide would have antagonized Turkey, a key strategic ally for the US. She argues that she was guided by the raison d’état that labels are best left to historians.  

Not in the view of American-Armenian Diaspora groups or many Armenian-language news services, who have republished a letter from Harut Sassounian, the publisher of Los Angeles'  The California Courier, a weekly catering to the city's sizable Diaspora Armenian community, that advises Stanford University (where Rice now works as a political science professor, a political economy professor at Stanford's business school and, lastly, a public policy fellow) to inform the 57-year-old foreign policy veteran that "genocide deniers are not welcome at one of America’s most distinguished institutions of higher learning."

Warming to his task, Sassounian charged that Rice had behaved as “a spineless official of a banana republic” by allegedly caving in to Turkish interests.

These groups seems particularly incensed by Rice's characterization of the "powerful Armenian-American lobby." The chairman of the Armenian National Committee of America has called on his members to “Help us bring about the day when someone in Rice’s position would never dare compromise America’s standing by so wretchedly playing the genocide card as a political commodity.”

The Obama administration has also studiously avoided using the G-word when talking about the Meds Yeghern, though the president did use it repeatedly as a Senator and candidate. It will be interesting to see whether GOP candidates try to call the president out on this in a bid for Armenian money and votes, or hold back knowing that if they're elected, they're basically guaranteed to flip-flop on it. 

UMIT BEKTAS/AFP/Getty Images