Clinton’s Bad Foreign Policy Record
Hillary Clinton is having fun at Iowa voters’ expense:
Hillary Clinton would like Iowa Democratic caucus-goers to consider her entire foreign policy record, not just her vote to go to war in Iraq, which she admits was a mistake.
I’m not sure why Clinton thinks that considering her entire record would eliminate voters’ doubts about her foreign policy judgment. She seems to think that it will work if she recites the phrase “smart power” often enough and skips over the details of the policies she supported. If Democratic voters actually did take her entire record into account, they would find that she is frequently inclined to commit the U.S. to unnecessary interventions and to take sides in foreign conflicts where the U.S. has little or nothing at stake. The Libyan war is the most obvious and telling example of this from her time as Secretary of State, but she was also an advocate of escalation in Afghanistan, she was an early supporter of sending arms to the Syrian opposition, and during her last presidential campaign she was generally more hawkish than Obama on all issues. Since he has taken the U.S. into at least two wars of choice and nearly started a third, we should expect something even worse from another Clinton administration. Clinton talks up the importance of the “slow, hard, boring work of diplomacy,” but during her own time at State she wasn’t involved in much of that. Contrary to what she’s saying now, she opted for the quick and easy option of backing military action for regime change with no plan for what would come next in Libya.
If we judge Clinton by her record at State, we find that the policies that she backed were some of the worst blunders that Obama made, and the intervention in Libya that she is most responsible for was an outright disaster. The Iraq war vote was just one in a series of poor decisions Clinton has made. She keeps ending up on the wrong side of these issues because she typically takes the more hawkish position in any given debate. That’s what her record shows, which is why I suspect that she doesn’t really want voters to pay attention to it.