According to Republican candidate Jeb Bush, we all have U.S. President Barack Obama and the former Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton, to thank for the current state of Iraq. The presidential hopeful pointed a finger at the two because he believes they shouldn’t have supported the decision to withdraw U.S. troops from Iraq.
“Rushing away from danger can be every bit as unwise as rushing into danger, and the costs have been grievous,” Bush said in his recent address on foreign policy. He went on to vow that unlike Obama and Clinton, he would be “unyielding” in his mission to eliminate the “barbarians of ISIS,” starting with a promise to work on “rebuilding the armed forces of the United States.”
While laying out his own strategy for the fight against ISIS, Bush is also calling for the enactment of no-fly areas and other “safe zones” over Syria, which would help defeat Syrian President Bashar al-Assad. “Defeating ISIS requires defeating Assad, but we have to make sure that his regime is not replaced by something as bad or worse,” explained Bush.
Other tactics in Jeb Bush’s plan include actually embedding U.S. forces into Iraqi ones (instead of just training them), using social media to counteract ISIS recruitment efforts online, and joining forces with other Arab countries to form an alliance against ISIS backed by American military power.
As CNN points out, many of Jeb Bush’s proposals (with the exception of embedding troops) aren’t too far off from the strategies that are currently in place. Bush, like all of the other presidential hopefuls, are working on crafting the perfect foreign policy, but critics have been quick to point out that many of Bush’s advisers on foreign policy include a lot of the same names that worked with his brother, former President George W. Bush, who started the war on Iraq in the first place.
Killough, A., “Jeb Bush blames Clinton, Obama for Iraq’s problems,” CNN web site, August 12, 2015; http://goo.gl/QTPkAa.