Tags: Iraq in Crisis | Rand Paul | perry | rand | paul | isolationism | wrong

Perry: Rand Paul's 'Curiously Blind' to ISIS Threat

By    |   Saturday, 12 July 2014 11:03 AM

Americans have grown tired of war, but turning to isolationism and ignoring what's happening overseas will endanger the United States' national security even more, says Texas Gov. Rick Perry.

"Many people are tired of war, and the urge to pull back is a natural, human reaction," writes the onetime Republican presidential candidate in an opinion piece for The Washington Post Saturday.

Perry, who is being mentioned for a possible 2016 presidential run, took offense with fellow Republicans like Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul, another possible candidate, who "suggest that our nation should ignore what’s happening in Iraq."

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Ignoring Iraq means blocking out the threat posed by the militant Islamic State group, which could pose danger for not only the United States but for the world, said Perry.

"In the Islamic State, which came to prominence in Syria and now controls ample territory, weapons and cash in both that country and Iraq, the world is confronting an even more radicalized version of Islamic extremism than al-Qaida," said Perry. "This group is well-trained, technologically sophisticated and adept at recruitment, with thousands of people with European passports fighting on its side, as well as some Americans."

Paul, Perry complained, seems "curiously blind" to the threats posed by Islamic State (ISIS).

"Any of these passport carriers can simply buy a plane ticket and show up in the United States without even a visa," said Perry. "It’s particularly chilling when you consider that one American has already carried out a suicide bombing and a terrorist-trained European allegedly killed four at the Jewish Museum in Brussels."

Last month, Paul wrote an op-ed for The Wall Street Journal to make the case for not intervening, saying that former President Ronald Reagan's administration had doctrines that argued against war except under very certain circumstances.

"But his analysis is wrong," Perry complained. "Paul conveniently omitted Reagan’s long internationalist record of leading the world with moral and strategic clarity."

Reagan believed that the nation's security and prosperity requires engagement and leadership abroad, said Perry.

"Reagan identified Soviet communism as an existential threat to our national security and Western values, and he confronted this threat in every theater," said Perry. "Today, we count his many actions as critical to the ultimate defeat of the Soviet Union and the freeing of hundreds of millions from tyranny."

However, there were voices for inaction that feared Reagan's policies would lead to war with the then-Soviet Union, said Perry.

"This, sadly, is the same policy of inaction that Paul advocates today," he said.

Perry wrote that he doesn't believe in a "wait-and-see foreign policy" and Reagan wouldn't have either.

"When he drew a 'red line,' the world knew exactly what that meant," Perry said of the late president.

Instead, Paul and others are drawing their own red lines and "creating a giant moat where superpowers can retire from the world," Perry said.

President Barack Obama is also drawing red lines, which the world sees as a negotiating ploy rather than a plan for action, said Perry.

"This kind of confused leadership and passivity enabled groups such as the Islamic State to grow and play major roles in terror’s resurgence," he wrote. "It has also enabled al-Qaida to regroup."

Meanwhile, said Perry, the window to shape events in Iraq and Syria passed years ago and there are no good options.

"Nonetheless, the president can and must do more with our military and intelligence communities to help cripple the Islamic State," said Perry. "Meaningful assistance can include intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance sharing and ­airstrikes."

ISIS may be an even more sophisticated enemy than Osama bin Laden, claimed Perry.

"Who can doubt that other bin Ladens are lurking in the labs and training grounds of this group’s newly gained territory?" he wrote.

And while Obama's policies "led us to this dangerous point, Paul's isolationism "would compound the threat of terrorism even further."

Instead, he said, Paul would be wise to heed Reagan's warning that the nation "cannot take blind shelter across the sea, rushing to respond only after freedom is lost."

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Americans have grown tired of war, but turning to isolationism and ignoring what's happening overseas will endanger the United States' national security even more, says Texas Gov. Rick Perry...
perry, rand, paul, isolationism, wrong
Saturday, 12 July 2014 11:03 AM
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