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NYT's Mark Landler: Sid Blumenthal Urged Hillary to Take Credit For Gadhafi Overthrow

 

By    |   Monday, 02 May 2016 06:40 PM

Hillary Clinton pal Sidney Blumenthal was "very" influential in shaping her responses as secretary of state to the overthrow of Libyan strongman Muammar Gadhafi. New York Times White House correspondent Mark Landler tells Newsmax TV.

"I believe that Sidney Blumenthal was very important in influencing her, in particular, in the aftermath of it in making sure that she positioned herself correctly in taking credit for it," Landler said Monday on "The Steve Malzberg Show."

"He was one of the people who said, 'Look, when they finally get Gadhafi, you should go into the driveway of your home and give a press conference. You need to be established in this historical moment.' As with a lot of her other advisers, they thought this was going to be a big victory for her."

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Blumenthal, a former adviser to President Bill Clinton and journalist who has written for The Times and the Washington Post, is one of the many characters in Landler's new book, "Alter Egos: Hillary Clinton, Barack Obama, and the Twilight Struggle Over American Power," published by Random House.

In the book, he discusses one of the criticisms of Clinton's run for president: that her policies will mirror those of President Barack Obama.

"Even as you started to see the election take shape, a lot of people, critics and opponents of her were saying 'if you elect her, you're just getting Obama's third term.' I kind of thought why not try to set out and answer that question," Landler said.

"I think my answer is there will be these important differences and the differences go toward the openness to considering military force, the optimism that American intervention can end well instead of ending badly. She's more of a hawk. That's it.

"I sort of wanted to look at the big peace debates of the first term and try to figure out what role did she play, what was she arguing for, was she successful and hence what kind of a president might she be."

And how will Clinton combat what some see as the foreign policy failures of the Obama administration?

"What I predict will happen, and I think you're already seeing it, is she will come down somewhat to the right of the president," Landler told Malzberg.

"[She'll] say 'Look, in the case of Ukraine, I would've been comfortable if we did more to push back on [Russian President Vladimir] Putin. In the case of Syria, I would've been open to arming the moderate rebels way back in 2012 when the president wasn't.’

"In the case of Libya, that's obviously a difficult one for her because she's very identified with that intervention. It was really her that persuaded the president to do it. I think you can already see the outlines of how she'll defend herself. She'll say, 'Look, it's a work in progress, it may still work out, these things take a long time, don't judge it right now.'"

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Hillary Clinton pal Sidney Blumenthal was "very" influential in shaping her responses as secretary of state to the overthrow of Libyan strongman Muammar Gadhafi. New York Times White House correspondent Mark Landler tells Newsmax TV.
mark landler, hillary clinton, sidney blumenthal, muammar gadhafi
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Monday, 02 May 2016 06:40 PM
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