U.S. Sen. Rand Paul sees "confusion and choas" in Iraq

06/22/2014 09:20 AM

On two Sunday morning national news shows U.S. Sen. Rand Paul, R-Kentucky, said terrorist groups should be prevented from exporting terror to the United States, but that he did not want to see American troops on the ground in Iraq.

“I know they’re bad terrorists and yes we should prevent them from exporting terror, but I’m not so sure where the clear cut American interests are,” Paul told David Gregory on NBC’s ‘Meet the Press.

Paul said he personally believes that the militant group, the Islamic State in Syria and Iraq, or ISIS, would not be in Iraq if the American government had been supporting their allies in other conflicts.

“I see mostly confusion and chaos and I think some of the chaos is created from getting involved in the Syrian civil war. You have to realize that some of the Islamic rebels that we have been supporting are actually allies of the group that is now in Iraq causing all of this trouble,” Paul told Gregory.

On CNN’s ‘State of the Union’ host Candy Crowley pushed Paul on his belief that ISIS is not a national security threat to the United States, but Paul again brought the discussion back to the multiple allegiances at play between Syria and Iraq.

And Paul said he doesn’t blame Obama for the situation in Iraq.

“What’s going on now I really don’t blame on President Obama. Has he really got the solution? Maybe there is no solution. But I do blame the Iraq War on the chaos that is in the Middle East,” Paul said on Meet the Press.

Paul said he does not want to see ground troops in Iraq, but did not “nit-pick” Obama for sending 300 military advisers to the country to protect the United States embassy and other outposts.

He said the decision to send military troops overseas is one that he takes on a family footing.

“I look at it on a personal basis I ask do I want to send one of my sons or your son to fight to regain Mosul, and I think well yeah these are nasty terrorists should we want to kill them? But I think who should want to stop them more? Maybe the people who live there,” Paul said on NBC.

“Should not the Shiites the Maliki government, should they not stand up and if they’re ripping their uniforms off and fleeing how am I going to convince my son or your son to die for Mosul.”

Paul’s comments illustrate a divide with other Republicans on the need for military intervention in Iraq including U.S. Sen. Mitch McConnell of Kentucky, who seemed to indicate Thursday that he wants a larger military presence in Iraq.


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