Carson: ‘Not Sure We Attack Every Government That Declares War On Us’

Republican presidential candidate Dr. Ben Carson argued, “I’m not sure that we attack every government that declares war on us” on Thursday’s broadcast of the Fox News Channel’s “O’Reilly Factor.”

Carson discussed his opposition to the Afghanistan and Iraq wars by stating, [relevant exchange begins around 1:30] “I thought there were better ways to accomplish our goals.”

Carson continued, “Afghanistan does not have a central government. It has 300 tribal leaders. The only successes that we have, which were limited, were through our association with the northern alliance of tribal leaders, and that helped for a while, that’s sort of dissolved now, and what have we really accomplished? Every nation that has gone into Afghanistan to quote ‘tame it,’ has failed. So, that doesn’t mean that we couldn’t take Osama bin Laden out. It doesn’t mean that we couldn’t take out the terrorist camps. But I don’t see how we could possibly expect that we were going to do what no one else has been able to.”

After host Bill O’Reilly asked whether the Taliban government declaring war on the US necessitated an attack on them, Carson said, “I’m not sure that we attack every government that declares war on us,” and cited the Iranians chanting “Death to America.”

The discussion then turned to ISIS, Carson stated, “Well, first of all, make it very clear that we do want to defeat them. And I would use everything available to us, that includes the economic possibilities available to us. It involves all of our covert activities and special forces. And I believe that it would probably require that we actually put some men on the ground, because we’ve called for the development of this coalition, for all the nations in that area who have an interest, but we’re not providing any leadership for them. So, of course they’re not going to form spontaneously.”

He added, “I wouldn’t go into Syria. What I would do, is i would drive ISIS out of Iraq. I think we [are] capable of doing that. … you push them up into Syria, and you regain control of Iraq. That’s a big part of the victory, because that’s part of their caliphate. And that’s the majority of the caliphate, is in Iraq. We could push them out of there. That will make them look like losers. It’ll make it much more difficult for them to recruit people when they look like losers.”

Follow Ian Hanchett on Twitter @IanHanchett


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