Ten years after the September 11th terrorist strikes, Republican presidential candidate Ron Paul says that we haven’t changed a thing when it comes to understanding and fighting the causes of terrorism.
“We’ve made things much worse, Paul said on NPR’s Talk of the Nation on Wednesday.
Paul, R-Tex., was asked to reflect on his 2008 clash with Republican presidential primary opponent Rudy Giuliani over the cause of 9/11. Paul has repeatedly said that America’s policy of preemptive strikes encourages terrorism such as what occurred on 9/11. Paul pointed to America’s invasion of Iraq as another catalyst for terrorist acts.
“Before we invaded Iraq, the Iraqis had never committed any acts of suicide terrorism. By 2007, they were committing over 300 acts of terrorism against Americans or allies of Americans,” Paul said. “So suicide terrorism, our greatest threat, is directly related to our presence in Arab countries and propping up puppet governments in that region. And there’s been total denial of this.”
Opposition to the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan and more generally to U.S. military activity abroad has been a cornerstone of Paul’s candidacy and sets him apart from the rest of the Republican field and President Obama. He has a long record of voting against international intervention. He voted against both Iraq wars. He voted against the war in Kosovo and the Iraq Liberation Act of 1998 which he called a “declaration of virtual war.” Although he did vote for the use of force and emergency appropriations in Afghanistan after September 11 – he now says he regrets the votes and says the money was misused.