Then came a strange one: “John McCain likes to say that he’ll follow bin Laden to the gates of Hell — but he won’t even go to the cave where he lives.” What’s that supposed to mean — that McCain is a coward, unwilling to lead a charge into the hills of Pakistan?
Wow, that's so confusing. How can I figure out what that possibly means? Perhaps I'll go to the Barack Obama article on Wikipedia and Ctrl+f 'find' any reference to Pakistan. Serendipity!
Obama said "it was a terrible mistake to fail to act" against a 2005 meeting of al-Qaeda leaders that U.S. intelligence had confirmed to be taking place in Pakistan's Federally Administered Tribal Areas. He said that as president he would not miss a similar opportunity, even without the support of the Pakistani government.
Whew, that research was really hard! John McCain opposes strikes without the permission of the Pakistani government. Hmmm... Maybe Safire did do his research, and is just counting on you not knowing? In that case, he wouldn't have to tell you that Barack Obama is to John McCain's RIGHT on going after bin Laden.
Coincidentally, the U.S. struck into Pakistan today without getting permission first. So, once again, we see Barack Obama propose a policy, get laughed at for six months, then Bush finally follows the policy, and John McCain (eventually) praises Bush. Makes you feel sorry for John McCain. Where's he gonna get all 'his' great ideas from once Barack stops running?