Longest War In US History Not Long Enough For Clinton?

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Clinton open to staying in Afghanistan past 2016

Hillary Clinton on Thursday said she would be open to keeping U.S. military forces in Afghanistan past 2016, President Obama’s deadline for withdrawal.

At an event at the Council on Foreign Relations, the think tank’s president Richard Haass asked Clinton whether she would be open to keeping a residual force after 2016.

“I would. It depends upon conditions on the ground,” said Clinton, who is considered the Democratic front-runner for president in 2016 and is touring the country to promote her new book, Hard Choices.

If the next elected president of Afghanistan “were to come up with a well thought-through plan of what is needed, I believe that would be very seriously considered,” Clinton added.

“The leadership in Afghanistan is watching.”

Clinton’s comments come just a few weeks after Obama announced his new timeline for leaving Afghanistan. A majority of U.S. forces will pull out by the end of the year, with a force of 9,800 remaining at the start of 2015.

Iraq, meanwhile, is on the brink of a civil war as al Qaeda factions seize major cities.

Many Republicans on Capitol Hill have criticized the Obama administration for pulling out of Iraq too soon, but Clinton said that was a different situation.

The Bush administration set the deadline to pull troops out of Iraq, Clinton noted, and the Obama administration tried to work with Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki to determine the status of residual forces after 2011.

“Maliki would not agree,” Clinton said, adding that she was surprised outgoing Afghan President Hamid Karzai wasn’t willing to sign a bilateral security agreement with the U.S.

With a new Afghan president, who will likely be determined by the runoff election on Saturday, Clinton says there might be “legal support” for America to stay in Afghanistan.

  • History301

    No surprise Clinton would remain in Afghanistan. She is a hawk after all who as senator, had no problem voting for more military spending, or authorizing the Bush administration whatever monies it asked for, so it still would appear her solutions to problems that use force are OK in her book.
    By now, I believe those folks who gather information from this site know all to well that perpetual war is one of the most important planks in the unofficial platforms of both parties, no matter how little sense that makes to informed voters. It makes perfect sense to those turning huge profits from the many facets of warfare and there are many making huge profits believe you me.
    Most rational people find such policies sickening of course and what to do about it is the major sticking point that prevents a change in such policies as constant war, worldwide military bases, weapons systems even the pentagon doesn’t want or need and many others ranging from fracking, to Citizens United most all people agree upon a sea change in policy is desperately needed. The divide and conquer strategy however is alive and well I’m sorry to say, but each day brings a few more people into the camp that would support a new Populist Party and chuck the corrupt two party system that has damaged so much and so many for so long. A hard row to hoe as I grew up hearing, however in simple acts of daily life that place me in contact with my neighbors in the local market for example, when discussing the failure of both major parties on most every issue we find here, people are certainly looking for an alternative to this system. If that means they would actually vote for a Populist candidate is a question that will be left unanswered until such a party and candidates appear. Naturally, as politics as usual will dictate, the hurdle we must find a way to overcome is getting the candidate and message out there. The mainstream media propaganda machine will certainly not allow such candidates any airtime using the debate format, and the money required to compete on ads would require a unity among people, the likes of which would make history. Using the internet and social media simply is not enough for say, Dr. Flowers to successfully run for president and while I feel strongly she is the best person for the job, how to get that idea in front of the American people, even as a possibility remains our largest hurdle. Ralph Nader was able to make a little noise when he ran, but how to do more than make a little noise is still the thing I feel must happen if we’re to bring democracy to the United States.
    I wish I had the answer. A quick and simple one too, but I do not. It breaks my heart I don’t for many reasons. Unless we fix this mess of corruption, discredit a propaganda machine so huge and in place for so long, it’s our children who will pay the price, along with generations that come later. Due to policies that can cause the extinction of human kind, it may be possible to enlist the resources of enough of the super wealthy to compete on the national stage and that may be our best course of action at this point. Surely there are enough people who dwell among the class of people often called, the owners, who could make the playing field level if they so choose. Maybe a little hope and food for thought on this beautiful morning.

  • cruisersailor

    Another good reason to vote for the Green Party candidate in 2016.

  • Alex Sawyer

    Absolutely. If anything comes out of Hillary’s inevitable nomination, I hope it’s the realization that continuing to play the lesser-evil game is not going to get us anywhere. Obama’s myriad failures should be proof enough of that.

  • MontanaGreen

    One more reason why I will not be voting for Hillary Clinton. All one has to do is look at the record of disaster she left behind as Secretary of State in the Middle East to clearly see she has no idea how to lead this nation in the 21st century. And that says nothing about the disastrous legacy she and Bill left us with TAFTA, the loss of Glass-Steagall that led to the bank meltdowns, etc., etc., etc. We’ve had enough Clintons and Bushes in the White House for a couple more centuries at least.

  • kimsarah

    I like Hillary’s new face-lift. By the way, be careful what you say about her or Bill. Remember, they keep a thick black list.

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