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Hillary Clinton speaking at an event in Ottawa on Monday. (Photo: Canada 2020/flickr/cc)

Hillary Clinton Embraces 'Endless War Doctrine'

At event in Ottawa, former secretary of state says war against ISIS will be "long-term committment"

Andrea Germanos

Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has said that the war being waged against militant fighters in Iraq and Syria is "critical" and will be a prolonged part of U.S. foreign policy.

She made the remarks Monday in a keynote address at an event taking place in Ottawa hosted by Canada2020, which describes itself as "Canada's leading independent progressive think-tank."

As for the war against ISIS fighters in Iraq and Syria, the Democrat said that it was "essential" and a "long-term commitment."

"Whether you call them ISIS or ISIL, I refuse to call them the Islamic State, because they are neither Islamic or a state," Clinton said. "Whatever you call them, I think we can agree that the threat is real."

"I think military action is critical. In fact, I would say essential to try to prevent their further advance and their holding of more territory," the likely Democratic presidential candidate said.

She added that "military action alone" wasn't enough because there is also an "information war" to be fought.

Clinton's comments, along with those of ex-CIA and Pentagon head Leon Panetta—"I think we're looking at kind of a 30-year war"—show that "any doubts about whether Endless War – literally – is official American doctrine should be permanently erased," Glenn Greenwald writes at The Intercept

"At this point, it is literally inconceivable to imagine the U.S. not at war," Greenwald continued. "It would be shocking if that happened in our lifetime. U.S. officials are now all but openly saying this. 'Endless War' is not dramatic rhetorical license but a precise description of America’s foreign policy."

As author and co-director of Foreign Policy In Focus at the Institute for Policy Studies John Feffer has noted, Clinton's support of hawkish policies is not new:

Though she has centrist instincts on domestic issues, Clinton ran to the right of Obama on foreign policy during the 2008 presidential primary. She portrayed herself as the resolute hawk to his indecisive dove. As secretary of state, she continued to take more hawkish positions within the administration. In [her new book] Hard Choices, she emphasizes that not only can she make the hard (not easy) decisions but she’s willing to adopt the hard (not soft) positions on security issues.

She is not about to “feminize” the White House. She truly wants to play hardball with the big boys.


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