She Tries to Talk Peace, But She’s a Hawk: Hillary Clinton

Watch Iraq war Veteran challenge Hillary Clinton on the TODAY ...

Watch Iraq War veteran & IVAW member Will Hopkins challenge Hillary Clinton on the TODAY Show! Share it with your friends if you agree that we need to challenge the candidates on their stances on endless war. #DropTheMIC Will Hopkins: "I served in Iraq as an Army Infantryman in 2004 and 2005. I lost friends, a year of my life and I suspect I will be coping with the experience as long as I live...given your history and your close ties to elements within the military industrial complex, what assurances can you provide that companies and individuals who profit from war and militarism will not have undue influence in the Clinton Administration?"

Posted by Iraq Veterans Against the War on Monday, 5 October 2015

By Nancy Mancias

Leading up to the U.S. invasion of Iraq, CODEPINK was in hot pursuit of Hillary Clinton, encouraging her to change her position to go to war. Medea Benjamin, CODEPINK co-founder, writes, “We thought the easiest way to prevent harming the women, children and other living things in Iraq was to stop a war of aggression ostensibly over weapons of mass destruction that UN inspectors on the ground couldn't find and which were, in fact, never found because they didn't exist. Clinton, however, was steadfast: She said it was our responsibility to disarm Saddam Hussein and even defended George W. Bush's unilateralism, citing her husband's go-it-alone intervention in Kosovo."

"Disgusted, CODEPINK cofounder Jodie Evans tore off her pink slip and handed it to Clinton, saying that her support for Bush’s invasion would lead to the death of many innocent people. Making the bogus connection between the 9/11 attacks and Saddam Hussein, Clinton stormed out saying, “I am the Senator from New York. I will never put my people’s security at risk.” 

That was 12 years ago.

On October 5, 2015, CNN hosted a Town Hall meeting with now Democratic presidential candidate Clinton. During the meeting, a member of Iraq Veterans Against the War (IVAW), Will Hopkins, posed a challenging question to Clinton; this is what he said: "I served in Iraq as an Army Infantryman in 2004 and 2005. I lost friends, a year of my life and I suspect I will be coping with the experience as long as I live...given your history and your close ties to elements within the military industrial complex, what assurances can you provide that companies and individuals who profit from war and militarism will not have undue influence in the Clinton Administration?"

Watch the video above. What do you think of her answer? Here are responses from courageous CODEPINK activists: 
  • Oh, she'll use diplomacy. What a novel idea. Why didn't we think of that? -Susan, Oakland, CA
  • Believe in Diplomacy? Is that why she had the US bomb Libya? Is that why no diplomacy happened while she was Secretary of State? Great that a Vet asked her this question! -Jodie Evans, CODEPINK LA
  • Will Hopkins is not only an IVAW member, but the head of Peace Action New Hampshire--great fellow! -Colonel Ann Wright
  • OMG such a great question, such a b.s. answer. I know Will Hopkins and have spoken with him at UMaine Farmington, where he is an alum. Great guy. -Lisa, Solon, ME
  • I never heard her object to Obama's war policies ... Afghanistan,  Yemen, Syria, Drones,  etc. So ... It's BS. We need to hear from her who her military advisors would be and not be. Do I hear her calling for a US Department of Peace? A reduction in the military budget? A roll back in surveillance? Limiting DHS funds? -Eleanor, Oakland, CA 
  • She tries to talk the peace talk, but she's a hawk! HOLY COW, did I just coin a new slogan?? -Madeleine, Houston, TX 
  • She of course didn't answer the question (how will her presidency avoid undue influence by war profiteers?). She can't. The empire is run by and for them, and besides, they bought her, fair and square. Better to express patriotic sympathy and move straight on to reliable rhetoric. Her final, bottom-line statement was that she would "Unite people around American values and interests." In a capitalist empire, which, let's be clear, with 700+ bases around the world, NAFTA, and now the TPP fast-tracking towards Congress, is what we have, all the world's resources, labor and markets are "American interests." Have been since at least WWII, or 1898 (when the U.S. took Hawaii, Guam, and the Phillipines and, I would say, became an empire). Look out, world; more of the same has just been promised. As to American values, we can be sure that the next wars, like all of them, will be sold to us for freedom and democracy, women's rights, and national security."  That is, if they are sold to us at all. I found it ironic that neither party pointed out that the War Powers Act requires Congress to authorize U.S. war within 60 days. It was a bit of an exception that Bush even bothered to consult Congress on Iraq. How many active conflicts is the U.S. involved in now, under Obama, with "armed forces" that never went through our representatives for after-the-fact rubber stamping? Do we even know? And in an age of drone warfare presaging robot wars, what are "armed forces" anymore, anyway? And finally, "people." Which people will Hillary unite? Well, those that matter, obviously. Global elites. Coalitions of the willing.. Countries willing to front our wars for us (Saudi Arabia, Israel, Turkey... Next: India?). Those willing to finance them. Those willing to back them up rhetorically (Labor Party Britain under Blair, for example). As for the rest of us, well, we're the rabble. All we have to do is show up for Hillary once next fall and she'll take care of the rest. For now, for us, it's back to football, fear and beer. -Karen, Sonoma, CA

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