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A Record That Can't Be Trusted

- November 18, 2015

A Look At Clinton's Support Of Failed Policies That Have Done Anything But Make The World A Safer Place

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TOP TAKEAWAYS

  • Tomorrow, Clinton will roll out her strategy to defeat ISIS.
  • Clinton can't be trusted as commander-in-chief as she has repeatedly defended the Obama administration's failed strategy and deflected on the responsibility she carried as secretary of state.
  • Clinton's State Department fought against naming Boko Haram, now "the most deadly terrorist group in the world" as a foreign terrorist organization.
  • Clinton's failed Russia reset have led to global chaos and has given rise to new threats against the United States.

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Tomorrow, Clinton Will Unveil Her Plan For "Defeating ISIS And Eliminating The Immediate Threats It Poses." "Hillary Clinton will outline her plan for defeating ISIS on Thursday in New York City, her campaign said. The speech, which comes in the wake of the Paris terrorist attacks that took the lives of more than 130 people, will outline Clinton's 'strategy for defeating ISIS and eliminating the immediate threats it poses, as well as her plan for combating radical jihadism more broadly,' the campaign said in a statement." (Dan Merica, "Hillary Clinton To Outline Plan For Defeating ISIS," CNN, 11/17/15)

  • "Clinton Will Lay Out Her Vision For The Role American Leadership Must Play In Supporting Our Allies, Protecting Our Homeland, And Forging A Safer World." "'Clinton will lay out her vision for the role American leadership must play in supporting our allies, protecting our homeland, and forging a safer world,' the statement added." (Dan Merica, "Hillary Clinton To Outline Plan For Defeating ISIS," CNN, 11/17/15

CLINTON CANNOT BE TRUSTED AS COMMANDER-IN-CHIEF CONSIDERING SHE HAS REPEATEDLY STOOD IN SUPPORT OF THE OBAMA ADMINISTRATION'S FAILED ISIS STRATEGY

This Month, Clinton Reiterated Her "Support" For The Obama Administration's Strategy To Combat ISIS. CLINTON: "So here is where I think the United States is right now and what I support and what I would do in addition. Defense Secretary Carter said the other day that our new strategy is what he called the 'three r's:' Raqqa, Ramadi and raids. Raqqa is the city they operate out of in Northern Syria, Ramadi is the Iraqi city that they captured, which is a center of northern central Iraq, a Sunni city. And raids is what the president has decided we are going to do more of by committing special ops forces. But there is no military solution to ISIS unless we get a better coordinated effort from an Iraqi army that will fight, from the Kurds who will be able to focus on ISIS and not be constantly having to fight rear guard actions against the Turks and others who are worried about their ability to establish some territorial holds, with the Russians now with the latest information about their plane being perhaps bombed, having to decide are they really most focused on Assad's enemies or on their own because ISIS did take credit although it's not yet been totally concluded that's what happened. So we've got to do intensive diplomacy to get everyone on the same page." (Hillary Clinton, Remarks, Windham, NH, 11/9/15)

  • In February 2015, Clinton Said Obama Is Making "The Right Moves" In The Effort Against ISIS. "On the effort against ISIL, Clinton suggested during the Q&A with journalist Kara Swisher that there was little use in inserting U.S. combat troops into the fight and essentially backed the president's strategy so far. 'It's a very hard challenge, because you can't very well put American or Western troops in to fight this organism,' she said, in her clearest statement yet on the topic. 'You have to use, not only air force but also army soldiers from the region and particularly from Iraq. … A lot of the right moves are being made, but this is a really complicated and long-term problem.'" (Gabriel Debenedetti, "Hillary Clinton Tackles ISIL, Previews Economic Message," Politico, 2/25/15)
  • In June 2014, Clinton Supported Obama's Handling Of The Ongoing Crisis In Iraq, Saying, "I Would Have Advised Him To Do Exactly As I Believe He Is Now Doing." QUESTION: "If you were in the administration today, what would you have advised President Obama to do in Iraq?" CLINTON: "I would have advised him to do exactly as I believe he is now doing. To tell Maliki there will not be any American involvement whatsoever unless you take the following steps, and that we would begin, through our channels, to reach out to the Sunni tribal chiefs that we had worked with to turn back Al-Qaeda in Iraq. And I don't have the kind of access to the top-secret negotiations any longer, but that's what I believe is happening. Because when you think about how we were able to stop the spread of Al-Qaeda in Iraq, it was by partnering Shiite with Sunni with American support. I think that's the only way you're going to be able to get rid of this so-called ISIS group too. So, that's what I would be looking for and I believe that's probably what the President has put under his list of things that have to be accomplished." ( Interview With Hillary Clinton , NDTV, 6/21/14)

Clinton Has Deflected Her "Direct Involvement In Formulating" Obama's Failed Strategy

As Secretary Of State, Clinton Had "Direct Involvement In Formulating An Obama ISIL Containment Policy Stretched To The Breaking Point Now." "Instead, it puts the focus back squarely on the former secretary of state a few weeks after Clinton's much-lauded marathon Benghazi testimony while underscoring her role as not only the most hawkish candidate on the stage but the only one with direct involvement in formulating an Obama ISIL containment policy stretched to the breaking point now." (Glenn Thrush, "ISIL Crisis Snares Clinton And Obama," Politico, 11/14/15)

  • Politico Headline: "ISIL Crisis Snares Clinton And Obama" (Glenn Thrush, "ISIL Crisis Snares Clinton And Obama," Politico, 11/14/15)

In June 2014, Clinton Deflected The Responsibility She Carried As Secretary And Said, "I Could Not Have Predicted … The Extent To Which ISIS Could Be Effective In Seizing Cities In Iraq And Trying To Erase Boundaries To Create An Islamic State." HILLARY CLINTON: "So this is not just a Syrian problem anymore. I never thought it was just a Syrian problem. I thought it was a regional problem. I could not have predicted, however, the extent to which ISIS could be effective in seizing cities in Iraq and trying to erase boundaries to create an Islamic state." (Hillary Clinton, Remarks At The Council On Foreign Relations, New York, NY, 6/12/14)

Click To Watch

  • Obama's Former Ambassador To Iraq, Ryan Crocker, On ISIS: The Situation Is "Quite Frankly, Terrifying. And It Was Utterly Predictable." "The news from Iraq is, quite frankly, terrifying. And it was utterly predictable." (Ryan Crocker, Op-Ed, "It's Not Too Late To Reengage With Iraq," The Washington Post , 6/19/14)

While Claiming The Clinton-Obama Doctrine Had Put Al Qaeda "On The Run," There Were Reports Warning Of The Aims Of ISIS That Were Dismissed The Administration Because It Didn't Fit Its 2012 Campaign Narrative

In March 2011, Clinton Said Her State Department's Actions In Afghanistan "Put Al Qaeda On The Run." CLINTON: "In Iraq, almost 100,000 troops have come home and civilians are poised to keep the peace. In Afghanistan, integrated military and civilian surges have helped set the stage for our diplomatic surge to support Afghan-led reconciliation that can end the conflict and put al Qaeda on the run. We have imposed the toughest sanctions yet to rein in Iran's nuclear ambitions." (Hillary Clinton, Appropriations Subcommittee On State, Foreign Operations, And Related Hearings, U.S. Senate, Hearing, 3/2/11)

  • In June 2014, Clinton Said The Spread Of Al Qaeda In Iraq Had Been Stopped. "NDTV: "If you were in the administration today, what would you have advised President Obama to do in Iraq?" Clinton: "I would have advised him to do exactly as I believe he is now doing. To tell Maliki there will not be any American involvement whatsoever unless you take the following steps, and that we would begin, through our channels, to reach out to the Sunni tribal chiefs that we had worked with to turn back Al-Qaeda in Iraq. And I don't have the kind of access to the top-secret negotiations any longer, but that's what I believe is happening. Because when you think about how we were able to stop the spread of Al-Qaeda in Iraq, it was by partnering Shiite with Sunni with American support. I think that's the only way you're going to be able to get rid of this so-called ISIS group too. So, that's what I would be looking for and I believe that's probably what the President has put under his list of things that have to be accomplished." (Hillary Clinton, Interview With NDTV, 6/21/14)
  • In October 2014, Clinton Said That The Obama Administration Was Able To Undermine Al Qaeda's "Capacity To, As An Organization, Continue To Threaten The West." CLINTON: "But I think the evidence, at least to me, that this is a group that will try to pick up where Al Qaeda in Afghanistan left off. What we were able to do, at great cost, to ferret out and decapitate the leadership of Al Qaeda severely undermined their capacity to, as an organization, continue to threaten the West." (Hillary Clinton, Remarks At Canada 2020, Ottawa, Canada, 10/6/14)

"There Were, In Fact, More Than Hints Of [ISIS'] Plans And Potential." "And there were, in fact, more than hints of the group's plans and potential. A 2012 report by the United States Defense Intelligence Agency was direct: The growing chaos in Syria's civil war was giving Islamic militants there and in Iraq the space to spread and flourish. The group, it said, could 'declare an Islamic state through its union with other terrorist organizations in Iraq and Syria.' 'This particular report, this was one of those nobody wanted to see,' said Lt. Gen. Michael T. Flynn, who ran the defense agency at the time. 'It was disregarded by the White House,' he said. 'It was disregarded by other elements in the intelligence community as a one-off report. Frankly, at the White House, it didn't meet the narrative.'" (Ian Fisher, "In Rise Of ISIS, No Single Missed Key But Many Strands Of Blame," The New York Times , 11/18/15)

"A 2012 Report By The United States Defense Intelligence Agency Was Direct: The Growing Chaos In Syria's Civil War Was Giving Islamic Militants There And In Iraq The Space To Spread And Flourish." "And there were, in fact, more than hints of the group's plans and potential. A 2012 report by the United States Defense Intelligence Agency was direct: The growing chaos in Syria's civil war was giving Islamic militants there and in Iraq the space to spread and flourish. The group, it said, could 'declare an Islamic state through its union with other terrorist organizations in Iraq and Syria.' 'This particular report, this was one of those nobody wanted to see,' said Lt. Gen. Michael T. Flynn, who ran the defense agency at the time. 'It was disregarded by the White House,' he said. 'It was disregarded by other elements in the intelligence community as a one-off report. Frankly, at the White House, it didn't meet the narrative.'" (Ian Fisher, "In Rise Of ISIS, No Single Missed Key But Many Strands Of Blame," The New York Times , 11/18/15)

  • "The Group, It Said, Could 'Declare An Islamic State Through Its Union With Other Terrorist Organizations In Iraq And Syria.'" (Ian Fisher, "In Rise Of ISIS, No Single Missed Key But Many Strands Of Blame," The New York Times , 11/18/15)
  • Gen. Michael Flynn, Then-Head Of The Defense Intelligence Agency, On The 2012 Report: "It Was Disregarded By The White House… Frankly, At The White House, It Didn't Meet The Narrative." "'This particular report, this was one of those nobody wanted to see,' said Lt. Gen. Michael T. Flynn, who ran the defense agency at the time. 'It was disregarded by the White House,' he said. 'It was disregarded by other elements in the intelligence community as a one-off report. Frankly, at the White House, it didn't meet the narrative.'" (Ian Fisher, "In Rise Of ISIS, No Single Missed Key But Many Strands Of Blame," The New York Times , 11/18/15)

FOREIGN POLICY EXPERTS, DEMOCRATS, AND EDITORIAL BOARDS AGREE: THE OBAMA ADMINISTRATION DOES NOT HAVE A "COMPREHENSIVE STRATEGY" TO DEFEAT ISIS

Council On Foreign Relations' Richard Haass: "We Simply Don't Have" An ISIS Strategy Right Now And Obama's Rhetoric Isn't "Right." HAASS: "On the basic strategy, I think it would be very helpful if the President or the White House essentially articulated what they think is a reasonable, doable strategy of victory right now. … Then they could talk about what kind of a plan do we think we need to do to bring that about, how many forces, what the United States would be prepared to do in conjunction, in part of a coalition of the willing, so to speak, with other parties, the French, the British, several Arab elements. Then we can begin to have a strategy, we simply don't have one, and I don't understand, what is our definition of near term victory or success here? And unless you have that, it's very hard to conduct any sort of an operation. And that is what is missing, the President was complaining the other day that he wasn't getting credit for the strategy he'd put out there, claiming his critics were really offering nothing new. And I just don't think that's right, we don't have a fully developed strategy out there, and people are suggesting we should be doing more to bring about a different strategy." (MSNBC's "Morning Joe," 11/18/15)

  • Haass: "I Don't Understand" What Our Definition Of "Success" Is Here. HAASS: "Then we can begin to have a strategy, we simply don't have one, and I don't understand, what is our definition of near term victory or success here? And unless you have that, it's very hard to conduct any sort of an operation. And that is what is missing, the President was complaining the other day that he wasn't getting credit for the strategy he'd put out there, claiming his critics were really offering nothing new. And I just don't think that's right, we don't have a fully developed strategy out there, and people are suggesting we should be doing more to bring about a different strategy." (MSNBC's "Morning Joe," 11/18/15)

Click To Watch

General Jack Keane On The Obama Administration's ISIS Strategy: "I Can Say With Certainty" That The Current Strategy "Will Fail." KEANE: "ISIS' fundamentally evil, brutal, barbaric killing every day, systematically enslaving and raping women, destroying many of the monuments to civilization. It is indisputable that ISIS is succeeding and executing a global strategy from their caliphate in the Islamic State. As part of that strategy, they are planning to kill Americans. They have repeatedly said so, and they have proven they do what they say. Having the best security, defensive system in America is not sufficient. We must have as good an offense to stop and defeat ISIS, we do not, we are not even close. I can say with certainty that the current U.S. driven coalition strategy with its modest improvements will fail." (Homeland Security Committee, U.S. House Of Representatives, Hearing, 11/18/15)

Click To Watch

Democrat Sen. Tim Kaine (D-VA) On The Obama Administration's Approach To ISIS: "The Problem Is, We Don't Have A Comprehensive Strategy." (MSNBC's "Morning Joe," 11/10/15)

Click To Watch

The Washington Post : "It Has Been Apparent For Some Time That The United States Lacks A Strategy To Fulfill President Obama's Pledge To 'Degrade And Ultimately Destroy' The Islamic State…" "It has been apparent for some time that the United States lacks a strategy to fulfill President Obama's pledge to 'degrade and ultimately destroy' the Islamic State since it has no plan to root out the terrorists' base in Syria. There was hope, though, that Mr. Obama's half-measures might be enough to blunt the Islamic State's advances in Iraq, leaving the Syria problem for the next U.S. president. With the stunning fall of Ramadi on Sunday, even that modest optimism is questionable." (Editorial, "The Fall Of Ramadi Exposes Obama's Weak Islamic State Strategy," The Washington Post , 5/18/15)

  • The Associated Press Headline: "Despite Bombing, Islamic State Is No Weaker Than A Year Ago" (Ken Dilanian, Zeina Karam, and Bassem Mroue, "Despite Bombing, Islamic State Is No Weaker Than A Year Ago," The Associated Press , 7/31/15)
  • "The Islamic State's Staying Power Also Raises Questions About The Administration's Approach To The Threat That The Group Poses To The U.S. And Its Allies." (Ken Dilanian, Zeina Karam, and Bassem Mroue, "Despite Bombing, Islamic State Is No Weaker Than A Year Ago," The Associated Press , 7/31/15)

CLINTON'S STATE DEPARTMENT FOUGHT AGAINST NAMING BOKO HARAM, NOW "THE MOST DEADLY TERRORIST GROUP IN THE WORLD," A FOREIGN TERRORIST ORGANIZATION

2015 Global Terrorism Index: "Boko Haram Overtakes ISIL To Become The Most Deadly Terrorist Group In The World." (Global Terrorism Index 2015, Accessed 11/18/15, p. 4)

  • Report: "Boko Haram And ISIL Were Jointly Responsible For 51% Of All Claimed Global Fatalities In 2014." ("Key Facts," 2015 Global Terrorism Index, 11/17/15)

"The State Department Under Hillary Clinton Fought Hard Against Placing The Al Qaeda-Linked Militant Group Boko Haram On Its Official List Of Foreign Terrorist Organizations For Two Years." (Josh Rogin, "Hillary's State Department Refused To Brand Boko Haram As Terrorists," The Daily Beast , 5/7/14)

  • In 2012, Clinton's State Department Officials Lobbied Congress To Stop Legislation That Would Force The Obama Administration To Act On Boko Haram Or Explain Why No Action Had Been Taken. "A Congressional source said that in the last few days, State Department representatives have lobbied Congress to try to stop legislation which would force the administration to act against the group or explain why they had not done so." (Mark Hosenball And John Shiffman, "U.S. Justice Dept Urges Terror Label For Nigerian Militants," Reuters, 5/17/12)

Clinton's Refusal To Place Boko Haram On The Terrorist Organization List "Came Despite The Urging Of The Justice Department, The FBI, The CIA, And Over A Dozen Senators And Congressmen." "What Clinton didn't mention was that her own State Department refused to place Boko Haram on the list of foreign terrorist organizations in 2011, after the group bombed the U.N. headquarters in Abuja. The refusal came despite the urging of the Justice Department, the FBI, the CIA, and over a dozen senators and congressmen." (Josh Rogin, "Hillary's State Department Refused To Brand Boko Haram As Terrorists," The Daily Beast , 5/7/14)

  • Former U.S. Senior Official: "The One Thing [Clinton] Could Have Done, The One Tool She Had At Her Disposal, She Didn't Use. And Nobody Can Say She Wasn't Urged To Do It. It's Gross Hypocrisy." "'The one thing she could have done, the one tool she had at her disposal, she didn't use. And nobody can say she wasn't urged to do it. It's gross hypocrisy,' said a former senior U.S. official who was involved in the debate. 'The FBI, the CIA, and the Justice Department really wanted Boko Haram designated, they wanted the authorities that would provide to go after them, and they voiced that repeatedly to elected officials.'" (Josh Rogin, "Hillary's State Department Refused To Brand Boko Haram As Terrorists," The Daily Beast , 5/7/14)

In March, Boko Haram "Pledged Allegiance To The Islamic State." "Boko Haram's leader has pledged allegiance to the Islamic State in a new audio message, a group that monitors extremist activity said Saturday. In the recording, a man claiming to be Abubakar Shekau, leader of the Nigerian terrorist group that has killed thousands, vowed to follow Islamic State leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, according to SITE Intel Group, a U.S.-based organization." (Katharine Lackey, "Boko Haram Pledges Allegiance To The Islamic State," USA Today, 3/8/15)

AS RUSSIA EMERGES AS "THE GREATEST THREAT" TO THE U.S., NEW DEVELOPMENTS FURTHER HIGHLIGHT FAILURE OF CLINTON'S RUSSIA "RESET"

This Month, Putin Announced That "Russia Will Counter NATO's U.S.-Led Missile Defense Program By Deploying New Strike Weapons Capable Of Piercing The Shield." "Russia will counter NATO's U.S.-led missile defense program by deploying new strike weapons capable of piercing the shield, President Vladimir Putin said Tuesday. Putin told defense officials that by developing defenses against ballistic missiles Washington aims to 'neutralize' Russia's strategic nuclear deterrent and gain a 'decisive military superiority.'" (Vladimir Isachenkov, "Russia To Deploy New Weapons To Counter US Missile Shield," The Associated Press, 11/10/15)

Also This Month, Russia Signed A Contract To Sell Iran S-300 Surface To Air Missiles Systems. "Russia and Iran have signed a contract for Moscow to supply Tehran with S-300 surface-to-air missile systems, Sergei Chemezov, the chief executive of Russian state-owned defense conglomerate Rostec, was quoted by the RIA news agency as saying on Monday." ("Russia, Iran Have Signed Contract For Missile System Delivery: RIA," Reuters, 11/9/15)

  • "Israel And The US Fear The Missiles Could Be Used To Protect Iranian Nuclear Sites From Air Strikes." ("Russia To Provide Iran With S-300 Air Defence Missiles," BBC, 11/9/15)

In September, The Russian Military Launched A Bombing Attack In Syria Against Opposition Fighters, Not ISIS Targets. "Russian aircraft carried out a bombing attack against Syrian opposition fighters on Wednesday, including at least one group trained by the C.I.A., eliciting angry protests from American officials and plunging the complex sectarian war there into dangerous new territory." (Helene Cooper, Michael R. Gordon and Neil MacFarquhar, "Russians Strike Targets In Syria, But Not ISIS Areas," The New York Times, 9/30/15)

  • "Blindsided By The Unexpected Swiftness Of Russia's Air Attacks In Syria, The Obama Administration Scrambled…To Retake The Diplomatic And Military Initiatives..." "Blindsided by the unexpected swiftness of Russia's air attacks in Syria, the Obama administration scrambled Wednesday to retake the diplomatic and military initiatives, saying that it would not be bullied into supporting President Bashar al-Assad and that it was about to significantly expand its own Syrian air operations." (Karen DeYoung, "Obama Administration Scrambles As Russia Attempts To Seize Initiative In Syria," The Washington Post , 9/30/15)
  • "Russia's Sudden Moves To Seize The Initiative In The Syria And Iraq Crises In Recent Weeks Have Stunned U.S. Officials And Laid Bare The Erosion Of Washington's Influence In The Region." (Matt Spetalnick and Phil Stewart, "Across Arc Of Conflict, 'Obama Doctrine' Shows Sign Of Failure," Reuters, 9/30/15)

Clinton's Russia Reset Policy "Now Lies In Tatters." "But most experts agree that the policy now lies in tatters, with Russian President Vladimir Putin openly fueling anti-American sentiment at home and pursuing confrontational policies abroad, such as the invasion of Ukraine and the annexation of its Crimea region." (Olivier Knox, "Russia 'Reset' Architect To Next President: Don't Try That Again," Yahoo, 5/27/15)

  • Marine Corps Chief Lt. Gen. Robert Neller Pointed To Russia As Posing "The Greatest Threat" To The United States. JOE MANCHIN: "Sir, with that being said, I've asked this question to everyone who's come to this committee for their approval, and that would be, what do you assess as the greatest risk or threat the United States of America faces from another country? LT. GEN. ROBERT NELLER: "If you are asking me about a country, Senator, who poses the greatest threat, I would say another nation-state, I would agree with General Dunford that Russia has the most increasing capable force, and their actions and the fact that they have strategic forces make them the greatest potential threat, although I don't think they want to fight us. Right now I don't think they want to kill Americans. I think violent extremists want to kill us. And their capability is not that great but their intent is high." (Committee On Armed Services, U.S. Senate, Hearing, 7/23/15)
  • Army Chief Of Staff Gen. Mark Milley: Russia Is The Greatest National Security Threat To The United States. JOE MANCHIN: "What do you consider the greatest threat the United States of America faces, national security, as far as the country?" GENERAL MARK MILLEY: "As a soldier, as a military officer, I'd have to say that it's Russia." (Committee On Armed Services, U.S. Senate, Hearing, 7/21/15)
  • Vice Chairman Of The Joint Chiefs Of Staff Gen. Paul Selva: Russia Presents The Top Threat To The United States. GENERAL PAUL SELVA: "I would put the threats to this nation in the following order: Russia, China, Iran, and North Korea, and all of the organization that have grown around the ideology that was articulated by al Qaeda early in the turn of the century." (Committee On Armed Services, U.S. Senate, Hearing, 7/14/15)
  • Chairman Of The Joint Chiefs Of Staff Gen. Joseph Dunford: "Russia Presents The Greatest Threat To Our National Security." JOE MANCHIN: "And sir, I'm sure you've had the opportunity to form opinions on what our threats have been and what our threats are today. What would you consider the greatest threat to our national security?" GENERAL JOSEPH DUNFORD: "My assessment today is that Russia presents the greatest threat to our national security." (Committee On Armed Services, U.S. Senate, Hearing, 7/9/15)

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