Candidates Spar Over U.S. Role in Escalating Middle East Tension

Sen. Rand Paul says U.S. intervention in the Middle East has made world more dangerous; opponents say U.S. must not reduce role in world and that President Obama’s disengagement has roiled region.

  • “Iran is now stronger because Hussein is gone” and “when we complain about the Iranians it is because we made Iraq worse,” Paul says
    • “The Iraq war backfired,” and then when “many of us wanted to topple Assad, I said ’no’”
  • Jeb Bush says “when we pull back voids are created” and that is what led to the “creation of ISIS” in Syria
    • “We don’t have to be the world’s policeman, but we certainly have to be the world’s leader”
  • Sen. Marco Rubio says “what is happeneing in that region is a direct consequence of disengagement” and “the more we disengage the more you’re going to see planes flying out of Moscow and into Syria”
  • Aggression “is not needed in every circumstance,”says Ben Carson, rebutting claims that he preferred nothing be done
    • In order to solve problems we need to build intelligence as well as build up military
  • Wis. Gov. Scott Walker says Obama “needs to lift the political restrictions” on troops in Iraq, Syria