It was interesting to hear that Rand Paul declare the other day that removing Saddam Hussein from power was “a mistake”.
I must say that I am inclined to agree with the junior Senator from Kentucky. Indeed, after President Obama failed to obtain an extension to the Status of Forces agreement in October 2011, I posed the question, “Should Saddam Have Stayed in Power?”
Nevertheless, I am not very impressed with Rand Paul’s comment for two reasons.
First, in arguing that removing Saddam was a mistake he further argues, “The Sunnis didn’t like the Shiites, now Iraq is a vassal state for Iran. I’m worried (Iran) is twice as strong as it was before the Iraq War.” Of course, this is the same Rand Paul who argued in 2007 that Iran presented no threat to either Israel or the United States and accused Republicans of wanting to go to war with Iran. Now it could be the case that Paul has evolved in his thinking. But I am more inclined that he is pandering given that his audience were Orthodox Jews in Brooklyn.
Second, even if one agrees with Paul that it was a mistake to remove Saddam, remove Saddam we did. Saddam is gone and isn’t coming back. What does Rand Paul do concerning Iraq, Iran and the Middle East in the event he is elected President of the United States? If Rand Paul wants to be President then he needs to tell us his vision of the Middle East and America’s role in that vision instead of telling us he’s an opthamologist with 20-20 hindsight.
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