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Clinton Was Already Placed In Charge Of Stabilizing Iraq And Failed Miserably

- October 19, 2016

Prior To Clinton's Tenure As Secretary Of State, There Was No ISIS And Its Precursor "Continued To Struggle To Maintain Relevance." "Through 2011, Coalition forces continued to coordinate efforts with tribal security forces, killing the majority of AQI's leadership and leaving it in general disarray. Both Masri and Baghdadi were killed in a joint U.S.-Iraqi raid on April 18, 2010. After the April raid, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi (not to be confused with the deceased, Abu Umar al-Baghdadi) assumed control of an AQI severely weakened by local backlash and coalition and local security forces. AQI continued to struggle to maintain relevance through 2011, when Coalition forces withdrew." ("The Islamic State," Stanford University's Mapping Militant Organizations, 4/4/16)

In 2011, Clinton “Strongly Defended President Obama’s Plan To Withdraw Combat Troops From Iraq.” “Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton on Sunday strongly defended President Obama’s plan to withdraw combat troops from Iraq by the end of the year and issued a pointed warning to Iran not to underestimate the United States’ commitment to stability in the region.” (Sheryl Gay Stolberg, “Clinton Defends Iraq Withdrawal Plan,” The New York Times, 10/23/11)

  • The New York Times Headline: “Clinton Defends Iraq Withdrawal Plan” (Sheryl Gay Stolberg, “Clinton Defends Iraq Withdrawal Plan,” The New York Times, 10/23/11)

Clinton On Withdrawing From Iraq: “Obama Has Shown Great Leadership In Navigating To This Point, Fulfilling His Promise, Meeting The Obligations That Were Entered Into Before He Ever Came Into Office.” DAVID GREGORY: “But Secretary Clinton, the question is whether you think this criticism is well-founded or not. Do we not endanger recent success in Iraq by not having any residual force? Is there not a legitimate prospect of civil war, which many people fear?” CLINTON: “Well, honestly, I think that they should have raised those issues when President Bush agreed to the agreement to withdraw troops by the end of this year. I feel like this is a debate that is looking backwards instead of forwards. … But President Obama has shown great leadership in navigating to this point, fulfilling his promise, meeting the obligations that were entered into before he ever came into office. We are providing a support-and-training mission. We will be there on the ground, working with the Iraqis. And I just want to add, David, that no one should miscalculate America’s resolve and commitment to helping support the Iraqi democracy. We have paid too high a price to give the Iraqis this chance, and I hope that Iran and no one else miscalculates that.” (NBC’s “Meet The Press,” 10/23/11)

  • Clinton: “We May Not Be Leaving Military Bases In Iraq, But We Have Bases Elsewhere. We Have Support And Training Assets Elsewhere.” GREGORY: “Well, and I want to just underline that. There’s a feeling that Iran could try to push Iraq around, particularly in the Shia part of the southern part of Iraq. Are you suggesting that if Iran were to try to take advantage of this moment the U.S. would still have a military commitment, the message to Iran being what?” CLINTON: Well, I think Iran should look at the region. We may not be leaving military bases in Iraq, but we have bases elsewhere. We have support and training assets elsewhere. We have a NATO ally in Turkey. The United States is very present in the region.” (NBC’s “Meet The Press,” 10/23/11)

Hillary Clinton Promised Stability Could Be Maintained In Iraq Through A Large Civilian Presence That She Would Oversee. “Over dinner at the Blair House, guest quarters for elite White House visitors since the 1940s, the dour Iraqi sipped tea while Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton spoke of how her department’s civilian experts could help Iraqis avoid a return to terrorism and sectarian bloodshed. Iraq would see a ‘robust civilian presence,’ Clinton told reporters afterward, summing up the Obama administration’s pledges to Maliki. ‘We are working to achieve that,’ she said.” (Jeff Gerth/ProPublica and Joby Warrick, “Promises Unfulfilled: How A State Department Plan To Stabilize Iraq Broke Apart,” The Washington Post, 8/15/16)

Hillary Was Put In Charge Of Security Programs Responsible For Maintaining Stability During The Troop Drawdown Which She Completely Ignored And Delegated To Her Staff

Hillary’s State Department Was Originally Charged With Controlling Over 1/3rd Of The Transition Programs In Iraq Including Key Security Programs And Missions. “State Department officials initially planned for taking control of more than a third of the 1,300 programs and missions run by the Pentagon in Iraq. That alone, as Clinton herself would acknowledge, constituted the ‘largest transition from military to civilian leadership since the Marshall Plan,’ the extensive U.S. aid effort after World War II. Contingency plans created in 2010 envisioned taking over key security missions, such as the tribal reconciliation program. Another initiative called for building new diplomatic and intelligence outposts around the country to give the United States a presence in cities that once hosted American military bases. These facilities, called ‘Enduring Presence Posts,’ or EPPs, were initially planned for five Iraqi locales: Irbil, Diyala province, Kirkuk, Basra and Mosul.” (Jeff Gerth/ProPublica and Joby Warrick, “Promises Unfulfilled: How A State Department Plan To Stabilize Iraq Broke Apart,” The Washington Post, 8/15/16)

Hillary Clinton Completely Ignored The Transition Process Leaving The Task Of Stabilizing Iraq To Her Staffers. “A team led by State Department Deputy Secretary Thomas R. Nides was put in charge of reviewing and implementing the reductions, with support from State Department officials in Washington and Baghdad. Clinton, having lost the argument for a larger force, was briefed about the developments but left it to her subordinates to decide how the cuts would be implemented, several former and current administration officials said.” (Jeff Gerth/ProPublica and Joby Warrick, “Promises Unfulfilled: How A State Department Plan To Stabilize Iraq Broke Apart,” The Washington Post, 8/15/16)

During The Crucial Transition Period Of U.S. Troop Withdrawal, Clinton Oversaw A Period Categorized By One Department Official As A “Strategic Vacuum.” “‘There was a period of time after the transition from the military-led mission to a civilian-led mission when strategic decisions were not made, with one official calling the period ‘a strategic vacuum,’ the inspector general’s office said in its 2013 report, citing interviews with department officials in Washington and Iraq.” (Jeff Gerth/ProPublica and Joby Warrick, “Promises Unfulfilled: How A State Department Plan To Stabilize Iraq Broke Apart,” The Washington Post, 8/15/16)

Hillary’s State Department Made Careless Cuts To Programs Necessary For Iraq’s Security

Hillary Clinton’s State Department Made “Sweeping, Across-The-Board Cuts That Extended To Security And Counterterrorism Initiatives Once Considered Crucial For Iraq’s Stability After The Withdrawal Of U.S. Troops.” “Senior State Department leaders were at fault as well, according to documents and interviews with officials who helped manage Iraqi aid programs after the withdrawal. By early 2012, pressed by the White House to reduce the U.S. civilian footprint in Iraq, the department had begun implementing sweeping, across-the-board cuts that extended to security and counterterrorism initiatives once considered crucial for Iraq’s stability after the withdrawal of U.S. troops, a joint investigation by ProPublica and The Washington Post found.” (Jeff Gerth/ProPublica and Joby Warrick, “Promises Unfulfilled: How A State Department Plan To Stabilize Iraq Broke Apart,” The Washington Post, 8/15/16)

Internal Audits Show That Clinton’s State Department “Did Not Fully Consider U.S. Foreign Policy Priorities In Iraq” When Making Cuts To Programs In The Country. “But, in scaling back civilian assistance to Iraq, Clinton’s aides cut aggressively and sometimes unwisely, internal auditors later concluded. The reductions met cost-cutting goals but did not ‘fully consider U.S. foreign policy priorities in Iraq,’ an internal review by the State Department’s inspector general said. Some of the cuts were not fully implemented until after Clinton’s departure in early 2013, though the plans were largely in place, former aides said.” (Jeff Gerth/ProPublica and Joby Warrick, “Promises Unfulfilled: How A State Department Plan To Stabilize Iraq Broke Apart,” The Washington Post, 8/15/16)

Hillary’s State Department Left Iraqi Security Forces Weakened And Vulnerable To ISIS. “But an intensive review of the record during Clinton’s tenure presents a broader picture of missteps and miscalculations by multiple actors — including her State Department as well as the Maliki government, the White House and Congress — that left Iraqi security forces weakened and vulnerable to the Islamic State’s 2014 surge.” (Jeff Gerth/ProPublica and Joby Warrick, “Promises Unfulfilled: How A State Department Plan To Stabilize Iraq Broke Apart,” The Washington Post, 8/15/16)

Hillary’s State Department Ignored Military Commanders When Overseeing Parts Of The Troop Drawdown 

Cuts Made By Hillary’s State Department Were Objected To By U.S. Military Commanders On The Ground. “The downscaling was done over the objections of U.S. military leaders on the ground, who said the slashing of key assistance programs — in a few cases, by more than 90 percent — left the U.S. government increasingly in the dark about developments outside the Iraqi capital. Some former officers who managed Iraqi aid programs say the cuts were a factor in the slow deterioration of Iraq’s security forces in the months before the Islamic State’s 2014 assault.” (Jeff Gerth/ProPublica and Joby Warrick, “Promises Unfulfilled: How A State Department Plan To Stabilize Iraq Broke Apart,” The Washington Post, 8/15/16)

Retired Army Colonel Rick Welch Who Was In Charge Of A Program Cut By The State Department That Was Focused On Maintaining Stability Was Never Contacted By Hillary’s State Department. “In any event, the result was ‘lost trust with the Sunni community’ and the abandoning of an important window into what was really happening inside Iraq, said retired Army Col. Rick Welch, who oversaw the program before the military withdrawal, ‘No one from the State Department ever contacted me,’ Welch said in an interview. Eventually the Baghdad-based reconciliation effort was scaled back ‘to a trickle,’ he said, ‘and then nothing else happened.’” (Jeff Gerth/ProPublica and Joby Warrick, “Promises Unfulfilled: How A State Department Plan To Stabilize Iraq Broke Apart,” The Washington Post, 8/15/16)

  • Winters Said The Cuts Took Away The Ability To Stabilize Iraq’s Security Forces. “‘Our job was to prevent this from happening,’ said retired Rear Adm. Edward Winters, a former Navy SEAL and deputy director of the Office of Security Cooperation in Iraq, a Pentagon organization overseen by the State Department that managed the bilateral security relationship. ‘We felt the capability to do that was being taken away.’” (Jeff Gerth/ProPublica and Joby Warrick, “Promises Unfulfilled: How A State Department Plan To Stabilize Iraq Broke Apart,” The Washington Post, 8/15/16)

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