So Hillary Clinton, presidential candidate, is trying to outflank W. to the right. In her speech yesterday, Ms. Clinton lambasted the Bush administration – not for its threats against Iran, but for weakness. In particular, she hit the administration for going along with the European-led negotiations over Iran’s nuclear research, accusing Bush of “outsourcing” U.S. Iran policy.
Here’s Hillary on Iran yesterday, speaking at Princeton:
I believe that we lost critical time in dealing with Iran because the White House chose to downplay the threats and to outsource the negotiations. I don't believe you face threats like Iran or North Korea by outsourcing it to others and standing on the sidelines. But let's be clear about the threat we face now: A nuclear Iran is a danger to Israel, to its neighbors and beyond. The regime's pro-terrorist, anti-American and anti-Israel rhetoric only underscores the urgency of the threat it poses. U.S. policy must be clear and unequivocal. We cannot and should not — must not — permit Iran to build or acquire nuclear weapons. In order to prevent that from occurring, we must have more support vigorously and publicly expressed by China and Russia, and we must move as quickly as feasible for sanctions in the United Nations. And we cannot take any option off the table in sending a clear message to the current leadership of Iran — that they will not be permitted to acquire nuclear weapons.
Cynics might say it’s the latest in a long line of Hillaryspeak that positions her for her 2008 bid, protecting her right flank against charges of weakness on national defense. But I don’t think so. I think she really believes this stuff, and that her continual alliance with warmongering Sen. John McCain on issues like this (McCain also called for sanctions yesterday) is a sign that Hillary is indeed a right-leaning true believer.
Her Iraq position is virtually indistinguishable from that of Bush, and yesterday she once again railed against the idea of a Murtha-style withdrawal. “There are no quick, no easy solutions to the situation we find ourselves in today.” she said. “I do not believe that we should allow this to be an open-ended commitment without limits or end, nor do I believe that we can or should pull out of Iraq immediately.”