Tags: Trump Administration | Donald Trump | GOP2016 | ISIS/Islamic State | Ted Cruz | War on Terrorism | leon panetta

Leon Panetta: Trump, Cruz Anti-Terror Plans 'Dangerous' and 'Irresponsible'

Image: Leon Panetta: Trump, Cruz Anti-Terror Plans 'Dangerous' and 'Irresponsible'
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By    |   Friday, 25 Mar 2016 10:58 PM

Former Defense Secretary Leon Panetta blasts the anti-terror strategies of GOP presidential candidates Donald Trump and Sen. Ted Cruz as "dangerous" and "irresponsible," saying they put America's national security at risk.

In a conference call Friday organized by Democrat Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign, Panetta, who also served as director of the CIA during President Barack Obama's first term, said foreign leaders he's spoken with are disturbed by the "deeply reckless" rhetoric of the candidates, Yahoo News reports. 

"I know that sometimes these candidates think that they’re just talking to their voters in this country," Panetta said. "That’s the worst mistake they can make, because the rhetoric they’re using is damaging the United States abroad and creating real concerns about where this country is going in the future."

He didn't say which foreign leaders he was speaking about.

Panetta aimed his criticism of the top two GOP candidates' responses in the wake of Tuesday's deadly attacks in Belgium in particular.

"Both Trump and Cruz's approaches are the kind of shoot from the hip slogans that demonstrate what I fear is stunning lack of knowledge about national security and about fundamental values," Panetta said, ABC News reports.

"What we’re hearing from the Republican candidates on the other side are very irresponsible and dangerous proposals that I think will put our national security at risk and further divide us from very allies that we need in order to win this war against ISIS."

After the ISIS bombings at the airport and a subway in Brussels, Trump reiterated his proposal to ban Muslims from entering the country, to reinstate torture and called for less involvement with NATO.

Cruz proposed law enforcement patrol Muslim neighborhoods. 

Panetta also dismissed criticism that Obama or Clinton, during her stint as secretary of state, played a role in the rise of ISIS.

"You can’t lay the blame for these kinds of threats on the president or Secretary Clinton," he said. "The fact is terrorism has developed in those countries because of the conditions that are present in those countries and that kind of terrorism is something we just need to confront."

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Former Defense Secretary Leon Panetta blasts the anti-terror strategies of GOP presidential candidates Donald Trump and Sen. Ted Cruz as "dangerous" and "irresponsible," saying they put America's national security at risk.
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Friday, 25 Mar 2016 10:58 PM
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