Obama’s “bayonets and horses” trends in cyberspace


The final US presidential debate saw President Barack Obama and Republican challenger Mitt Romney trade blows over foreign policy, but it was Obama’s zinger on “bayonets and horses” that got the internet singing.

The pair squared off in Boca Raton, Florida, to debate US foreign policy.

While their verbal sparring landed blows in both directions, it was Obama’s line about bayonets and horses that really inspired tweeters.

Romney set out to score a hit against Obama over the size of the US Navy. He noted that the Navy had only 283 of the 313 ships it said it needed to carry out its mission.

The Navy, Romney said, now had fewer ships than it did in 1916.

Obama returned a rather larger round, complete with dripping cynicism.

“I think Governor Romney maybe hasn’t spent enough time looking at how our military works,” Obama said.

“You mentioned the Navy, for example, and that we have fewer ships than we did in 1916.

“Well, Governor, we also have fewer horses and bayonets, because the nature of our military has changed.

“We have these things called aircraft carriers, where planes land on them. We have these ships that go underwater, nuclear submarines. And so the question is not a game of Battleship, where we’re counting ships.”

“Horse and bayonets” immediately started trending on Twitter. It became the top trend in the US and was third worldwide, up to an hour after the debate ended.

Facebook users streamed online, with more than 50 pages appearing with the name “Horses and Bayonets” within hours.

The Democratic campaign couldn’t help itself, declaring: “Obama just sank Romney’s battleship”.

The irony, of course, is that while the candidates chewed the fat over Iran, Libya, Israel and Syria, the public’s imagination was captured not by any inspired solution to any of the American foreigh-policy headaches, but by bayonets and horses.

Go figure.



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4 thoughts on “Obama’s “bayonets and horses” trends in cyberspace

  • October 25, 2012 at 3:32 am

    What is so sad regarding Obama’s comment is our Wild Horses and Burros are being pulled from their rightful lands and warehoused at tax payers expense and then when they are not adopted are sent to slaughter in Mexico or Canada.

    To bad the author of this article did not think “outside the box.”

    • October 27, 2012 at 12:58 pm

      Wellllll….you realize that Obama wasn’t really talking about literal horses and bayonets, right? That the actual use of actual horses wasn’t the point that he was making, right?

      Perhaps you absolutely do understand this and I just completely missed your point. Otherwise, you kind of lost me.

  • October 28, 2012 at 9:16 pm

    He was making a witty comeback to his opponents statement…
    He was in no way talking about actual horses.
    If you want to get all “Wild horses and burros” there are plenty of articles on this site about just that.


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