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Obama: Does Romney want ‘to start another war’ in Middle East?

Jeff King 2012/09/24 03:59:37
Mitt is GOP they always want Wars
No Mitt doesn't
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President Barack Obama hit back hard in a "60 Minutes" interview broadcast Sunday at Mitt Romney's criticisms of his handling of Syria and Iran, saying that if the Republican standard-bearer "is suggesting that we should start another war, he should say so."

Obama also brushed aside talk that Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has been pressuring him to take a harder line on Iran's suspicious nuclear program — source of some of Romney's sharpest campaign-trail criticisms.

"When it comes to our national security decisions-- any pressure that I feel is simply to do what's right for the American people. And I am going to block out any noise that's out there," the president said.

"Now I feel an obligation -- not pressure but obligation -- to make sure that we're in close consultation with the Israelis-- on these issues, because it affects them deeply," Obama said. "They're one of our closest allies in the region. And we've got an Iranian regime that has said horrible things that directly threaten Israel's existence."

Romney has accused Obama of not doing enough to curb Iran's nuclear program, which Tehran says is a civilian energy program but America and its allies say is an effort to develop the ability to build a nuclear weapon. He has also charged that the president has done too little to help rebels against Syrian strongman Bashar al-Assad topple his regime as the civil war there has left perhaps as many as 20,000 dead.

Asked about those criticisms, Obama bristled.

"Let's see what I've done since I came into office: I said I'd end the war in Iraq. I did. I said that we'd go after Al Qaeda. They've been decimated in the FATA," he said, referring to Pakistan's Federally Administered Tribal Areas, along the remote border with Afghanistan. "That we'd go after bin Laden. He's gone. So I've executed on my foreign policy. And it's one that the American people largely agree with."

"So if Governor Romney is suggesting that we should start another war, he should say so," Obama said. That remark echoed suggestions from some of the president's advisers that Romney relies on so-called "neoconservative" advisers like those who championed the war in Iraq under President George W. Bush.

The interview — and a companion question-and-answer session with Romney — ran as Obama was poised to head to New York on Monday for the annual U.N. General Assembly, a brief pirouette on the world stage before he heads back out on the campaign trail. He will address the U.N. on Tuesday — exactly six weeks before Election Day — and then head out to the pivotal battleground of Ohio a day later.

The president won't hold separate meetings with any key world leaders, citing scheduling concerns. But Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama have found time to sit down Monday with the ladies of "The View" to tape an interview.

(White House aides did not rule out that the president could have "pull-aside" discussions with world leaders. It's just what it sounds like: The president pull aside another head of state or government on the margins of a U.N. meeting for a quick chat.)

Last year, Obama used his general assembly speech to rebuke the Palestinians for trying to get the world body to essentially grant the status of a state. This year, the president is expected to blend a full-throated defense of his handling of foreign policy with a new warning to Iran. And he is expected to address the violent turmoil in the Middle East, notably in countries that saw the so-called "Arab Spring" uprisings sweep away longstanding authoritarian regimes.

"There are going to be bumps in the road," he said "There are strains of extremism, and anti-Americanism, and anti-Western sentiments." "There will probably be some times where we bump up against some of these countries and have strong disagreements, but I do think that over the long term we are more likely to get a Middle East and North Africa that is more peaceful, more prosperous and more aligned with our interests," he said. (After the interview, both the Romney campaign and the Republican National Committee mocked Obama's use of "bumps in the road" in connection to the unrest).

Obama tends to get higher marks from the American public on foreign policy than on other issues — notably, the economy, which is the dominant issue on voters' minds. But he has seen his advantage over Romney shrink somewhat.

For his part, Romney has struggled to level more than rhetorical criticisms of Obama's foreign policy — sometimes sounding like he'd rather take on the Obama of 2008, who pledged to hold talks with leaders of Iran without preconditions, than the Obama of 2012, who has sharply escalated economic sanctions on the Islamic republic and reportedly unleashed unprecedented cyberwarfare to derail its nuclear program.

Still, the incumbent faces a dismaying number of foreign policy problems.

Bombings regularly rock Iraq, where the war isn't over — America is just not as involved. And it seems like each week brings a new report of Afghan security forces killing their NATO and American counterparts. Iran defies international pressure to halt its suspect nuclear program, while civil war rages in Syria. Russia has moved to expel American aid workers. Violent protests have struck U.S. diplomatic posts in the Muslim world, and extremists who have yet to be formally identified stormed the consulate in Benghazi and killed the American ambassador — marking the anniversary of 9-11 with a terrorist attack. China's territorial disputes with some of its neighbors have escalated.

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  • Woof 2012/09/29 06:41:29
    No Mitt doesn't
    Woof
    No Mitt wants to create jobs, he would like four years to do SOMETHING other than the debt that Obama has created. The debt that more than doubled what he inherited. Obama has been a drunken sailor, buying drinks for people and asking china for money today that he will repay tomorrow! Obama bucks to buy Obama Votes in his Obamamation. No wonder he wanted to redesign the American flag. He's ashamed of it, I'm ashamed of him.
  • wcake 2012/09/26 02:56:58
    No Mitt doesn't
    wcake
    +1
    Obama has lots of Gaffes which liberal media won't report on or give the coverage. Obama ditches World leaders for "The View".
    More recently,Obama does not care about how insult Iran's President's remark in his speech about Isreal at U.N. He is Pro-Palenstine Authority. Gave away of tax payer money 7 billions a year to muslim countries since took the office.
  • Golden Panther 2012/09/24 17:12:31
    No Mitt doesn't
    Golden Panther
    +1
    I do not believe Mitt is a war monger. However, no president should ever take us into a war against an enemy we do not intend to nuke from the planet. We are not the worlds policeman and if countries such as Libya, Syria, and Iran want to commit genocide, so be it, as long as our citizens and interests are not in peril. In the case of odumbo, we have another situation,and that is we have been duped into electing a communist, Muslim, racist and our only recourse is to vote him and his Jack-boot thugs in the Senate and House out of office...if not, we will become cannon fodder to all the evil isms in the world.
  • CUDDLY BUT STILL CRABBY 2012/09/24 14:20:15
    No Mitt doesn't
    CUDDLY BUT STILL CRABBY
  • Sport_Geoff 2012/09/24 14:14:08
    No Mitt doesn't
    Sport_Geoff
    +2
    Who has been in charge for the past 3 1/2 years? When has the middle east as a whole ever been in such a turmoil and rioting against the U.S. prior to the past 3 1/2 years? Your are delusional liberal that can't accept the fact that:

    Obama is the one that installed the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt

    Obama is the one that has funded all of the radicals in Lybia, Syria, Yemin, etc.

    Obama is the one that is driving the turmoil in the middle east....Not Romney......Not Bush...OBAMA.......FACT
  • Jeff King Sport_G... 2012/09/24 14:31:09
  • Sport_G... Jeff King 2012/09/24 14:32:56 (edited)
    Sport_Geoff
    Did they riot then like they are now?.....NO.......nowhere near on the same level and scale.
  • Jeff King Sport_G... 2012/09/24 14:34:27
  • HOMBRE 2012/09/24 14:13:52
    No Mitt doesn't
    HOMBRE
    +2
    Mitt dont want to start a war but Mitt isnt a pussy like Obama is;-)
  • TheTruth1313 2012/09/24 06:35:01
    No Mitt doesn't
    TheTruth1313
    +2
    I do not think anyone actually WANTS to start a war. This is yet another left biased media supported obama comment to steer voters away from obama's horrific failure of a record during this term.
  • Jeff King TheTrut... 2012/09/24 13:55:11
  • TheTrut... Jeff King 2012/09/25 06:58:18
    TheTruth1313
    Jeff, I do not intend to insult here, but, could you perhaps clarify your previous comment?
  • FAWKES' NOOSE ~ ΔTX 2012/09/24 04:07:50
    Mitt is GOP they always want Wars
    FAWKES' NOOSE ~ ΔTX
    +2
    Of course he does. Wars are BIG business. Just ask Cheney.
  • aj FAWKES'... 2012/09/25 02:06:11 (edited)
    aj
    +1
    Or Obama. Don't confuse democrat party rhetoric with lack of warmongering. It was a democratic congress that allowed Bush's abuses while pretending to be against it. Kerry was just as much a warmonger. Obama plays the media double spin with Iran very well, always ignoring very real Israeli illegal nuclear weapons they refuse to allow inspections of, while talking up the possibility Iran would ever do the same thing as reason to threaten them. Obama's security advisor that guided him through the last election was none other than Brzezinski, Kissinger's tea buddy who also helped create the Mujahadeen in the first place...
    GOP and DNC, two sides of the corrupt two party Trilateral, CFR sponsored stranglehold system preventing any real democracy.
  • Onyx 2012/09/24 04:04:47
    No Mitt doesn't
    Onyx
    +3
    Obama foreign policy sucks

    Under Obama the Middle East is on fire! Now he is going to blame Romney too....WTF
  • aj Onyx 2012/09/25 03:32:01 (edited)
    aj
    +1
    I think they both do, but you can bet Obama's PR will spin it as the next guy's fault just like he spins everything he did as Bush's, even though democrats controlled Congress long before they got republicans in they could finally blame again.
    The signs of who they were both for were with SOPA and PIPA. Congress couldn't agree on anything, not even a budget and went home early for the holidays. After millions of dollars lobbying, out the gate both parties and both houses stumble over each other with Hollywood sponsored SOPA and PIPA acts and it took the Internet community combined to stumble it, and Obama pushed "treaties" instead, that International lobbyists had more say on than American citizens did.
    Obama supported the Patriot Act rebranding, mercenaries torturing the Middle East and about every evil thing we blamed Bush for doing. He plays mind game rhetoric with Iran, ignoring the very real illegal Israeli Nuclear weapons pointing at them, while threatening Iran against even legal options. If he was half a man he'd treat people equal, but instead he toes the warmongering AIPAC line like the rest. Only difference is Obama has more sides out his mouth to talk, and can sound convincing from each one. One minute preaching hope and fairness to Palestine the next assur...
    I think they both do, but you can bet Obama's PR will spin it as the next guy's fault just like he spins everything he did as Bush's, even though democrats controlled Congress long before they got republicans in they could finally blame again.
    The signs of who they were both for were with SOPA and PIPA. Congress couldn't agree on anything, not even a budget and went home early for the holidays. After millions of dollars lobbying, out the gate both parties and both houses stumble over each other with Hollywood sponsored SOPA and PIPA acts and it took the Internet community combined to stumble it, and Obama pushed "treaties" instead, that International lobbyists had more say on than American citizens did.
    Obama supported the Patriot Act rebranding, mercenaries torturing the Middle East and about every evil thing we blamed Bush for doing. He plays mind game rhetoric with Iran, ignoring the very real illegal Israeli Nuclear weapons pointing at them, while threatening Iran against even legal options. If he was half a man he'd treat people equal, but instead he toes the warmongering AIPAC line like the rest. Only difference is Obama has more sides out his mouth to talk, and can sound convincing from each one. One minute preaching hope and fairness to Palestine the next assuring Israel he gots their back, meanwhile opaque government and erosion of the constitution steams ahead. Who knows what the CFR sponsored hell the two parties really want as they shadow box us against each other, but it isn't good for the rest of us.
    (more)
  • Jeff King aj 2012/09/25 03:54:29
  • aj Jeff King 2012/09/25 12:32:33 (edited)
    aj
    Well, if you want food for thought that Anthrax that went around to people in the media and Democrats that were questioning Bush was US Military, by genetic type and by refinement process (almost pure silica, no bentonyte). The "suspect" killed himself claiming he was being set up so they were able to drop the investigation after it led to Fort Detrick, MD, and the media dropped the matter. The notes were created Western style dating and sounding out of words, but had phrases to implicate Muslims.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/...

    http://www.liveleak.com/view?...

    It just almost seems odd to me, that US military Anthrax would somehow be sent to Democrats and anyone in the media questioning the military response and subversion of the constitution after 911, and once it led to a US Army base, the suspect would kill himself, after claiming he was being set up and the whole matter would be dropped just like that. It alllmost seems like there was more to US military Anthrax being blamed on Iraq, sent to people here questioning things publicly (why would Saddam use US Military anthrax researchers to shut people up questioning invading pre-proof and shredding our constitution)? Democrats and the media dropped the matter too so I guess maybe there's nothing there...
  • Jeff King aj 2012/09/25 13:11:49

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