Friday, June 1, 2007

The candidates on foreign policy

Note: This page is a work in progress.

Dr. Ron Paul

"Interventionism is done with a pretense of wisdom believing we always know the good guys from the bad guys, and that we will ignore the corporate and political special interests always agitating for influence.
Nothing could be further from the truth."
Dr. Ron Paul, US Foreign Policy and NATO's Involvement in Yugoslavia and Kosovo, April 21, 1999

"When weaker nations are intimidated by more powerful ones, striking back very often can be done only through terrorism, a problem that will continue to threaten all Americans as our leaders incite those who oppose our aggressive stands throughout the world. But when a foreign war comes to our shores in the form of terrorism, we can be sure that our government will explain the need for further sacrifice of personal liberties to win this war against terrorism as well."
Dr. Ron Paul, US Foreign Policy and NATO's Involvement in Yugoslavia and Kosovo, April 21, 1999

"The basic moral principle underpinning a non-interventionist foreign policy is that of rejecting the initiation of force against others. It is based on non-violence and friendship unless attacked, self-determination, and self-defense while avoiding confrontation, even when we disagree with the way other countries run their affairs. It simply means that we should mind our own business and not be influenced by special interests that have an ax to grind or benefits to gain by controlling our foreign policy. Manipulating our country into conflicts that are none of our business and unrelated to national security provides no benefit to us, while exposing us to great risks financially and militarily."
Dr. Ron Paul, A Foreign Policy for Peace, Prosperity, and Liberty, September 9, 2002

"I have heard all the arguments on why we must immediately invade and occupy Iraq and have observed that there are only a few hardy souls left in the Congress who are trying to stop this needless, senseless, and dangerous war."
Dr. Ron Paul, War is a Political Mistake, September 18, 2002

"Already, the coordinating propaganda has galvanized the American people against Iran for the supposed threat it poses to us with weapons of mass destruction that are no more present than those Saddam Hussein was alleged to have had."
Dr. Ron Paul, Iran: The Next Neo-Con Target, April 7, 2006

"(K)eeping our troops out of harm's way, especially when war is unnecessary, is never unpatriotic. There's no better way to support the troops ... It's disconcerting that those of us who never believed the justifications given for our
invasion, and who now want the war ended, are still accused of not supporting the troops!"
Dr. Ron Paul, Support the Troops by Ending the War, February 1, 2007

"I have been one of the strongest opponents of military action against Iraq. I voted against the initial authorization in 2002, and I have voted against every supplemental appropriations bill to fund the war. I even voted against the initial 'Iraq regime change' legislation back in 1998. I believe our troops should be brought back to the United States without delay."
Dr. Ron Paul, Bring Our Troops Home Now, July 12, 2007

See also Ron Paul on foreign policy during the Clinton years.

Barack Obama

"Never has it been more important for America to lead wisely, to shrewdly project power and wield influence ... In every region of the globe, our foreign policy should promote traditional American ideals."
Barack Obama, speech to the Council on Foreign Relations, July 4, 2004
(see Barack Obama on Foreign Policy)

"There's not that much difference between my position and George Bush's position at this stage.
The difference, in my mind, is who's in a position to execute."
Barack Obama, July 27, 2004 (see Meet Barack Obama by Eric Ruder)

"(T)he US should not rule out military strikes to destroy nuclear production sites in Iran."
Barack Obama, September 25, 2004 (see Barack Obama and the Clash of Civilizations by David Peterson)

"After the December 15 elections and during the course of next year, we need to focus our attention on how to reduce the US military footprint in Iraq. Notice that I say 'reduce,' and not 'fully withdraw.'"
Barack Obama, November 22, 2005 (see O-Bomb-A and the War Party by Justin Raimondo)

"When I am President, we will wage the war that has to be won, with a comprehensive strategy with five elements: getting out of Iraq and on to the right battlefield in Afghanistan and Pakistan ..."
Barack Obama, August 1, 2007 (see Obama as the New Kennedy: And Not in a Good Way …, by Justin Raimondo)

"(Obama's foreign policy) delights neoconservative guru Robert Kagan, who summed up Obama's message succinctly: 'His critique is not that we've meddled too much but that we haven't meddled enough.… To Obama, everything and everyone everywhere is of strategic concern to the United States.'"
Ira Chernus, Democratic Double-Speak on Iraq, July 22, 2007

Hillary Clinton

"In the four years since the inspectors left, intelligence reports show that Saddam Hussein has worked to rebuild his chemical and biological weapons stock, his missile delivery capability, and his nuclear program. He has also given aid, comfort, and sanctuary to terrorists, including Al Qaeda members ... It is clear, however, that if left unchecked, Saddam Hussein will continue to increase his capacity to wage biological and chemical warfare, and will keep trying to develop nuclear weapons. Should he succeed in that endeavor, he could alter the political and
security landscape of the Middle East, which as we know all too well, affects American security."
Hillary Clinton, Floor speech on S.J. Res 45, October 10, 2002

"We must widen the scope of our strength by leading strong alliances which can apply military force when required and promote our values."
Hillary Clinton, January 22, 2007 (see Democratic Double-Speak on Iraq by Ira Chernus)

"As I have long said and will continue to say, U.S. policy must be clear and unequivocal: We cannot, we should not, we must not permit Iran to build or acquire nuclear weapons. And in dealing with this threat, as I've also said for a long time, no option can be taken off the table."
Hillary Clinton, February 14, 2007 (see MoveOn Whitewashes Hillary’s Iran Belligerence by Norman Solomon)

John Edwards

"(Congress) should clearly endorse the use of all necessary means to eliminate the threat posed
by Saddam Hussein's weapons of mass destruction."
John Edwards, Senator Edwards says Congress must be clear on Iraq, September 19, 2002

"Saddam needed to be confronted. John Kerry and I have consistently said that. That's why we voted for the resolution."
John Edwards, Vice-Presidential Debate Transcript, October 5, 2004

"To ensure that Iran never gets nuclear weapons, we need to keep all options on the table.
Let me reiterate – ALL options must remain on the table."
John Edwards, January 22, 2007 (see The Words None Dare Say: Nuclear War by George LaKoff)