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25 Aug, 2014 11:26

Hillary Clinton is a war hawk - Sen. Rand Paul

Hillary Clinton is a war hawk - Sen. Rand Paul

The US Senator from Kentucky has warned that if Hillary Clinton, the former US Secretary of State, becomes the next American president, she could get the United States bogged down in yet another conflict in the Middle East.

Following in the footsteps of his Libertarian father, Ron Paul, who spent much of his lengthy political career demanding a more isolationist US foreign policy, Rand Paul told NBC’s Meet the Press that the 2016 presidential election could be “transformational” if a “war hawk” like Hillary Rodham Clinton gets into the Oval Office.

Hillary Clinton bashes Obama's foreign policy for giving rise to Islamic State in Iraq

"We're worried that Hillary Clinton will get us involved in another Middle Eastern war, because she's so gung-ho," Paul added.

Indeed, Clinton has acquired a reputation for being quick to jump on the war wagon – even when it has been the neoconservative faction of the Republican Party demanding a call to arms.

In 2002, Senator Hillary Clinton from New York made a fateful decision that has haunted her political career to this day: She voted to authorize US President George W. Bush to open a military offensive against Iraq, which was suspected of harboring weapons of mass destruction. No such weapons, however, were ever discovered.

“Many senators came to wish they had voted against the resolution. I was one of them,” Clinton has written in her newly released book, "Hard Choices."

“As the war dragged on, with every letter I sent to a family in New York who had lost a son or daughter, a father or mother, my mistake (became) more painful," she adds.

"I thought I had acted in good faith and made the best decision I could with the information I had. And I wasn't alone in getting it wrong. But I still got it wrong. Plain and simple."

Rand Paul.(Reuters / Lucas Jackson)

However, many political observers think the former Secretary of State will win the Democratic nomination to participate in the 2016 presidential elections - not despite her jingoistic impulses, but precisely because of them.

“What’s her calculation here,” Nicholas Lemann asked in a recent article in The New Yorker. “It can only be a belief that she has such an overwhelming lead among Democrats that…the electorate in November, 2016, will agree with her that we need a more hawkish president than Obama.”

Meanwhile, however, Obama himself has shown a strong tendency for opening up military offensives in a number of foreign countries - for example, in Libya, where the United States commanded a NATO air campaign that ultimately led to the capture and on-the-spot execution of Muammar Gaddafi on October 20, 2011.

The two-term Democratic leader has also dramatically increased the number of drone strikes against alleged terrorist militants in comparison with his predecessor, George W. Bush.

This record of overseas military adventures by both the Democrats and Republicans may present Americans with a shortage of options when it comes to electing a politician who favors an American foreign policy that is not ‘gung-ho’ on interfering in the affairs of sovereign states.

It is on this point that Paul, a potential presidential candidate himself, may pin his hopes on a run for the presidency.

"I think that's what scares the Democrats the most, is that in a general election, were I to run, there's gonna be a lot of independents and even some Democrats who say, `You know what? We are tired of war,'" Paul concluded in the interview.