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Some said Hillary Clinton's speech was full of fundamental contradictions—and hinted at the former secretary of state's own hawkish positions. (Screenshot)

Clinton's Foreign Policy Speech Marred by Inherent Contradictions

"Hillary Clinton's history of supporting interventionism puts her in a weird place to be portraying her opponent as trigger happy."

Deirdre Fulton

Flanked by 19 American flags, Hillary Clinton gave a wide-ranging foreign policy speech on Thursday, in which she flayed Donald Trump for his "thin skin" and "dangerously incoherent" approach to international affairs.

The speech, delivered in San Diego five days ahead of California's June 7 primary, lambasted the presumptive Republican nominee as "temperamentally unfit" to be President of the United States. The full remarks are here.

"Americans aren't just electing a president in November," Clinton said, "we're choosing our next commander-in-chief, a person we count on to answer questions of war and peace, life and death. The person the Republicans have nominated for president cannot do the job."

Clinton noted that Trump has praised leaders like Russian President Vladimir Putin and North Korea's Kim Jong Un, quipping: "I will leave it to the psychiatrists to explain his affection for tyrants."

But that was just one of several statements that raised observers' eyebrows, in a speech that some said was full of fundamental contradictions—and hinted at Clinton's own hawkish positions.

After all, as journalist Robert Parry wrote in April, "If Clinton becomes President, she will be surrounded by a neocon-dominated American foreign policy establishment that will press her to resume its 'regime change' strategies in the Middle East and escalate its new and dangerous Cold War against Russia."

Clinton did not mention her Democratic rival Bernie Sanders in Thursday's remarks.

Pew Research Center surveys have laid bare how Sanders and Clinton supporters differ on foreign policy issues. Polls conducted in March and April showed that two-thirds (66%) of Democratic and Democratic-leaning registered voters who support Clinton for the party's presidential nomination say that world problems would be even worse without U.S. involvement—just 28 percent say U.S. efforts usually make things worse.

By contrast, Sanders supporters are divided, with 49 percent saying global problems would be even worse without U.S. involvement and 45 percent saying U.S. intervention usually makes matters worse.


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