Appearing on Fox News Thursday, Breitbart News National Security Editor Dr. Sebastian Gorka, author of Defeating Jihad: The Winnable War, addressed Donald Trump’s comments that President Obama is the “founder of ISIS,” and the response from Democrats.
“I’m not his spokesman, I’m not part of his campaign, so let him talk for himself,” Gorka said of Trump. “But if he means that the Obama Administration and Hillary Clinton facilitated the growth of ISIS into the most powerful jihadi insurgency the world has ever seen, he is absolutely right.”
“Let’s just look at the facts,” he continued. “In 2008, when this Senator from Illinois became the President, and afterwards appointed Hillary as his Secretary of State, at that moment in time, ISIS didn’t exist. Al Qaeda in Iraq, the forerunner of ISIS, was one regional franchise inside Iraq. When we withdrew our troops – when we started to cook the books on intelligence, as you hear from the CENTCOM analysts – then we facilitated the rise of ISIS. With these false red lines in Syria that meant nothing, all the things were put in place by this Administration to help this former al Qaeda franchise become a trans-regional insurgency with more than 80,000 fighters today. That’s facts.”
Fellow guest Larry Korb, a senior fellow at the Center for American Progress and former Assistant Secretary of Defense, disagreed that the facts Gorka laid out justified the words Trump used.
“I think if you take a look at what he said, and compare it to his own statements, Dr. Gorka seemed to indicate that by us leaving Iraq in 2011, under the agreement that was signed before Obama came into office, that Maliki, the prime minister, refused to modify – Trump said we should leave in 2007,” Korb argued. “He also said we should leave in 2008. He said it again in 2011.”
“If you go back to how did ISIS start, Zarqawi, who was really the founder of ISIS, was a nobody until Colin Powell went before the United Nations and glorified them, and said he was associated with Saddam,” Korb continued.
Asked to compare Trump’s rhetoric to such Democratic outbursts as Hillary Clinton claiming Trump was the Islamic State’s “best recruiter,” Korb evaded by replying, “I think if you take a look at what he said yesterday, basically it’s the same thing that Mr. Putin and the Ayatollah are saying, and in fact the Ayatollah says we created ISIS so you’d have Sunnis killing Shias, and that’s why we have to do that things that we do.”
Korb stressed that Trump’s current criticism of Obama and Clinton on ISIS “contradicts things he himself has said, never mind what the Democrats are saying. I can show you, in 2007 he said, we ought to get out. Said it again in 2008, said it again in 2011. So if that’s the problem, he is responsible for it.”
Gorka came back to the falsified CENTCOM intelligence that Obama used to mislead the American people about progress in the war on ISIS, calling it “outrageous.”
“We didn’t even have that during the Vietnam war,” he pointed out. “And I find it just as stunning that Mr. Korb, who engineered our withdrawal from Beirut, who sent the wrong message to the jihadis in the Eighties, worked in the Reagan Administration, and is now attacking Colin Powell? Really? Where’s the integrity in Washington? How about talking about the facts on the ground, please, Mr. Korb?”
“I’m happy to talk about the facts on the ground,” Korb replied. “Zarqawi was nobody. Read what Colin Powell said before the U.N. He claimed he was in league with Saddam, which he was not. Saddam was trying to kill him.”