Hilary Clinton Slams Obama Over Foreign Policies
( 4UMF NEWS ) Hilary Clinton Slams Obama Over Foreign Policies:
Hillary Clinton blasts President Obama’s foreign policy in an interview published Sunday, saying her former boss’ failure to have a clear strategy for the Middle East has spawned the current ISIS crisis in Iraq.
“Great nations need organizing principles, and ‘Don’t do stupid stuff’ is not an organizing principle,” said Clinton, who was Obama’s first secretary of state and who is said to be mulling a run for the White House.
She was responding to a question about one of the administration’s infamous catchphrases — “Don’t do stupid s- -t” — which Obama staffers reportedly use privately to describe their foreign policy.
In the interview with Jeffrey Goldberg for The Atlantic, Clinton distanced herself from her former boss and that philosophy.
Clinton’s slam comes at a time when Obama’s popularity has bottomed at 40 percent and his foreign policy is under fire from members of both parties amid a proliferation of crises overseas.
In particular, she trashed the administration’s “failure” to arm Syrian rebels in the early phase of their uprising against President Bashar al-Assad — a policy she says she tried to change.
“The failure to help build up a credible fighting force of the people who were the originators of the protests against Assad — there were Islamists, there were secularists, there was everything in the middle — the failure to do that left a big vacuum, which the jihadists have now filled,” Clinton said.
The former first lady gave the interview early last week, just as the administration was mobilizing to take on the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria, which has seized a huge swath of terrain in Syria and Iraq.
During Obama’s first term, Clinton backed a more aggressive posture to help Syrian rebels. The administration held back airstrikes and avoided intervention in part out of concern that terror-linked groups might benefit.
Speaking to Goldberg in February, Obama said the idea that the US could have changed the outcome in Syria was “never true” because a trained army was battling “a farmer, a carpenter, an engineer who started out as protesters.”
Clinton also took a tough line in the interview on Iran, as the administration tries to reach an agreement to halt the nation’s nuclear program even as Iran seeks to keep enriching uranium for what it claims are peaceful purposes.
“I’ve always been in the camp that held that they did not have a right to enrichment,” Clinton said. “Contrary to their claim, there is no such thing as a right to enrich.”
“Yeah, if I were the prime minister of Israel, you’re damn right I would expect to have control over security [on the West Bank], because even if I’m dealing with [Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud] Abbas, who is 79 years old, and other members of Fatah, who are enjoying a better lifestyle and making money on all kinds of things, that does not protect Israel from the influx of Hamas or cross-border attacks from anywhere else,” Clinton said.
She also backed up Israel in its clash with Hamas, without chiding it for any of its tactics, as her replacement, Secretary of State John Kerry, has done.
“I think Israel did what it had to do to respond to the rockets,” Clinton said.
She did say Obama was “thoughtful” and “incredibly smart” and “cautious because he knows what he inherited, both the two wars and the economic front, and he has expended a lot of capital and energy trying to pull us out of the hole we’re in.”
Lawmakers from both parties vented about Iraq crisis on Sunday.
“We should take nothing off the table. We [should] start off with massive air attacks,” Rep. Peter King (R-LI) said on NBC’s “Meet the Press.”
Appearing on the same program, Sen. Richard Durbin (D-Ill.) said: “I can tell you this. Escalating it is not in the cards.”
- Hillary Clinton takes on Obama (politico.com)
- Hillary Clinton criticizes Obama's foreign policy 'failure'; strongly defends Israel (news.yahoo.com)
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