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How Can You Fix A Problem If You Can't Identify The Problem?

- June 13, 2016

Clinton Has Refused To Categorize The Terrorist Threat As "Radical Islam," Believes We Should "Empathize" With Our Enemies, And Believes The U.S. Is Not At War With ISIS

TOP TAKEAWAYS

  • Despite a long record of avoiding the term "radical Islam," Clinton flip-flopped the day after the terrorist attack in Orlando saying she was "happy" to use the term.
  • Clinton stated that she believes the United States must "empathize" with its enemies.
  • Clinton refuses to say we are not at war with ISIS, and says "this cannot be an American fight."

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For Months, Hillary Clinton Refused To Call Terrorism "Radical Islam"

In December, Clinton Refused To Categorize Terror As "Radical Islam." ABC'S GEORGE STEPHANOPOULOS: "You've also been reluctant to say we're fighting radical Islam. I wonder why not. Isn't it a mistake to not say it plain that the violence is being pushed by radical elements in that faith?" CLINTON: "Well, that's a different thing. Radical elements who use a dangerous and distorted view of Islam to promote their jihadist ambitions, I'm fine with that. I say it all the time. And I go after Islamists, too." STEPHANOPOULOS: "So what's the problem with radical Islam?" CLINTON: "Well, the problem is that that sounds like we are declaring a war against religion. And that, to me, is number one, wrong." (ABC's "This Week," 12/6/15)

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During The November 14, 2015 Democrat Debate, Clinton Refused To Say "Radical Islam" Even When Pressed By The Moderator. CBS'S JOHN DICKERSON: "Secretary Clinton, you mentioned radical jihadists. Marco Rubio, also running for president, said that this attack showed, the attack in Paris, showed that we are at war with radical Islam. Do you agree with that characterization 'radical Islam?'" CLINTON: "I don't think we're at war with Islam. I don't think we're at war with all Muslims. I think we're at war with jihadists who have-" DICKERSON: "Just to interrupt. He didn't say all Muslims. He said 'radical Islam.' Is that a phrase you-" CLINTON: "I think you can talk about Islamists who clearly are also jihadists, but I think it's not particularly helpful to make the case that senator Sanders was just making that I agree with that we've got to reach out to Muslim countries. We've got to have them be part of our coalition. If they hear people running for president who basically shortcut it to say we are somehow against Islam, that was one of the real contributions, despite all the other problems, that George W. Bush made after 9/11 when he basically said after going to a Mosque in Washington, we are not at war with Islam or Muslims. We are at war with violent extremism. We are at war with people who use their religion for purposes of power and oppression. And, yes, we are at war with those people. But I don't want us to be painting with too broad a brush." DICKERSON: "The reason I ask is you gave a speech at Georgetown University in which you said that it was important to show, 'Respect, even for one's enemies. Trying to understand and in so far as psychologically possible empathize with their perspective and point of view.' Can you explain what you mean in the context of this kind of barbarism?" CLINTON: "I think with this kind of barbarism and nihilism it's very hard to understand, other than the lust for power, the rejection of modernity, the total disregard for human rights, freedom, or any other value we know and respect. Historically, it is important to try to understand your adversary in order to figure out how they are thinking, what they will be doing, how they will react. I plead that it's very difficult when you deal with ISIS and organizations like that whose behavior is so barbaric and so vicious that it doesn't seem to have any purpose other than lust for killing and power and that's very difficult to put ourselves in the other's shoes." (CBS Democrat Primary Debate, Des Moines, IA, 11/14/15)

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Today, In The Wake Of The Attack In Orlando, Hillary Clinton Shifted, Saying She Was "Happy" To Use The Term "Radical Islam." CNN's CHRIS CUOMO: "One of the criticisms in these situations is that President Obama won't use the words 'radical Islamic terror.' That it seems to be either a fear or a protective instinct about blaming the religion. You are now coming under scrutiny about what you will call this, what this means to leadership. Do you believe that this is radical Islamism and or radical Islamic terror? Will you use those words, and if not, why?" CLINTON: "Well, first of all, from my perspective, it matters what we do more than what we say. And it mattered we got Bin Laden, not what name we called him. And I have clearly said that we face terrorist enemies who use Islam to justify slaughtering innocent people. And, you know, whether you call it radical jihadism or radical Islamism, I think they mean the same thing, I'm happy to say either." (CNN, 6/13/16)

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Clinton Believes That The U.S. Must "Empathize" With Its Enemies

Clinton Argues That We Must "Empathize" With Enemies Of The United States. CLINTON: "This is what we call smart power, using every possible tool and partner to advance peace and security, leaving no one on the sidelines, showing respect even for one's enemies. Trying to understand, and in so far as psychologically possible, empathize with their perspective and point of view. Helping to define the problems, determine the solutions. That is what we believe in the 21st century will change -- change the prospects for peace." (Hillary Clinton, Remarks at Georgetown University, Washington, D.C., 12/3/14)

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Clinton Refused To Admit The U.S. Is At War With ISIS

Clinton Refused To Say That The United States Is At War Against ISIS. ABC'S GEORGE STEPHANOPOULOS: "Is it time to declare war on ISIS?" CLINTON: "Look, we are definitely in conflict with ISIS and I think we need a new update of military authorization, the AUMF, which was passed after the attack after 9/11, should be brought up to..." STEPHANOPOULOS: "Why not declare war?" CLINTON: "Well, declare war is a very legal term as you know so well. I think what we want to do is make sure we have every tool at our disposable to, number one, destroy their would-be caliphate in Syria and in Iraq. Number two, do everything we can to dismantle this very effective virtual jihadist network that they're using on the internet. And number three, do whatever necessary to protect us here at home." STEPHANOPOULOS: "What are you concerned about in the declaration in war?" CLINTON: "Well, I think that the legal experts say, that if we, there are a lot who say that we already have the authority we need to go after ISIS or any international terrorist network, including Al Qaeda and anybody else in the AUMF. I think it is important, though, for the Congress to vote on behalf of the American people and to make sure that we are updating it to take into account the new authorities at risk." (ABC's "This Week," 12/6/15)

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Clinton Says The Struggle Against ISIS "Cannot Be An American Fight"

At The November Democrat Primary Debate, Clinton Said The Fight Against ISIS "Cannot Be An American Fight." CLINTON: "But it cannot be an American fight. And I think what the president has consistently said-- which I agree with-- is that we will support those who take the fight to ISIS. That is why we have troops in Iraq that are helping to train and build back up the Iraqi military, why we have special operators in Syria working with the Kurds and Arabs so that we can be supportive. But this cannot be an American fight, although American leadership is essential." (Hillary Clinton, Democrat Primary Debate, Des Moines, IA, 11/14/15)

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