by Jeffrey Steinberg
Within 24 hours of Hillary Clinton’s formal nomination as the Democratic Party’s 2016 presidential candidate, some of Clinton’s top foreign policy and national security campaign advisers came out with blood-curdling attacks against Russia and against Syrian President Bashar Assad.
Even as the Democratic Convention was underway, former CIA Director and Defense Secretary under Barack Obama, Leon Panetta, told the convention on July 27 that the key to ending the Syrian war is to overthrow President Assad. Two days later, Jeremy Bash, Panetta’s former chief of staff at CIA and the Pentagon and now a top adviser to Clinton, told the Daily Telegraph that one of Clinton’s first actions as President would be to order a top down review of the Syria policy, with a goal of putting the ouster of Assad at the top of the priorities. He argued that there is no prospect of defeating the Islamic State and Jabhat al Nusra without removing Assad.
Michelle Flournoy, who is viewed as Hillary Clinton’s top choice to be Secretary of Defense, told Defense One that a new administration must create a “no bomb zone” in the north of Syria, to safe-house rebel fighters and train and arm them to overthrow Assad, as well as combat ISIS and Nusra. She advocated the use of stand-off weapons against the Syrian Army as another escalation in the regime-change war launched by President Obama and Secretary of State Clinton in early 2011.
Flournoy is the CEO of the Center for a New American Security (CNAS), a think tank dominated by Clinton advisers and other neoconservatives. Flournoy’s interview with Defense One was a condensed version of a report CNAS just produced from an ISIS Study Group, which included a collection of war-hawks and neocons who are all part of the Clinton stable: Ryan Crocker, Kimberly Kagan, Joseph Lieberman, Gen. David Petraeus, Kenneth Pollack, Andrew Tabler and Frances Townsend.
In May, CNAS published a blueprint for global confrontation, called “Extending American Power: Strategies to Expand American Engagement in a Competitive World Order,” which was co-authored by Robert Kagan, a leading neocon who prepared a similar study for the incoming Bush-Cheney Administration in 2000, called “Project for a New American Century.” Both documents advanced a unipolar world based on projection of ever-expanding U.S. military power. The PNAC study was widely seen as the game-plan that Bush and Cheney used to launch the decade of permanent wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, a game-plan extended by Obama and Clinton into Syria and Libya.
Following the diatribes by Panetta, Bash and Flournoy, many astute observers concluded that the attacks on Syria, Russia and China, included in the combined remarks, could not have been issued without prior approval by Hillary Clinton herself.
In short, Clinton has declared herself as the “continuity” candidate from the nearly two-decades of permanent war, launched by Bush and Obama. Those wars have now put the world on the verge of thermonuclear war with Russia and China, a war that will wipe out humankind.
If anything, while serving as Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton was one of the most strident advocates of war and more war in the Obama Administration. Clinton was and remains a strong promoter of the need to overthrow the Assad government in Damascus, through direct U.S. military involvement if necessary. The demand to create a no-fly zone inside Syrian territory is a blatant violation of all principles of national sovereignty, and her role in the launching of the disastrous Libyan war—widely described as the decisive vote in the rush to regime-change—has created a permanent crisis throughout the African continent, leading to mass deaths and social chaos.
It was Hillary Clinton, along with Susan Rice and Samantha Power, who pushed for the ouster of Libyan leader Qaddafi, even though it meant aligning with hardcore Al Qaeda and related jihadist terror groups. The overthrow and assassination of Qaddafi turned Libya into an ungovernable no-mans-land, run by warring cliques of heavily armed militias, many dominated by Al Qaeda in the Islamic Magreb (AQIM) and subsequently by the Islamic State.
The arms that were “liberated” from Libyan government stockpiles have fueled wars across the African continent, and large quantities of those “loose weapons” were smuggled into Syria, through U.S., British, Saudi Arabian, Qatari and Turkish channels, into the hands of the jihadists who have turned Syria and Iraq into a Hell on Earth. Millions of refugees from the North African, Syrian, Iraq and Afghan conflicts, all boosted by Obama and Clinton, have flooded into Western Europe in desperate flight for their lives, creating the biggest refugee crisis in the entire postwar period.
These actions taken during Clinton’s four years as Secretary of State to Barack Obama, led directly to the events of Sept. 11, 2012, when jihadists from Ansar al-Sharia staged a heavily armed assault on the U.S. diplomatic compound in Benghazi, Libya, resulting in the murder of U.S. Ambassador Christopher Stevens and three other American officials.
As State Department documents detailed, for months prior to the Benghazi 9/11 attack, Ambassador Stevens and other U.S. diplomats in Libya had begged for increased security personnel. The State Department compiled a grid of scores of attacks on foreign diplomats and even the International Red Cross, but security was actually stripped, rather than boosted. While State Department official Patrick Kennedy was ostensibly in charge of security arrangements for the U.S. diplomatic mission in Libya, the buck really stopped with the Secretary—Hillary Clinton.
As the Benghazi attack on 9/11/12 was unfolding, live reports from Benghazi and from the embassy in Tripoli made clear that the attack on the mission was premeditated, well-planned, heavily armed and deadly. A Defense Intelligence Agency assessment, released within the government days after the attack, spelled out precisely how the attack was conducted.
Yet, President Obama and Secretary of State Clinton, more concerned with the upcoming November 2012 presidential elections, chose to lie to the American people and claimed that the attack in Benghazi was a “spontaneous” protest against a little-known video slandering the Prophet Mohammed—a boldfaced lie.
That lie, worked out in a late-night phone call between President Obama and Secretary Clinton, and first issued to the public in a press release issued under Clinton’s name, was maintained for days. On the Sunday after the attack, National Security Adviser Susan Rice went on a string of interview shows to peddle the “spontaneous protest-gone wild” lie, first issued by Clinton.
Hillary Clinton put the re-election of Barack Obama ahead of the truth and the vital national security interests of the United States. She calculated that if she had told the truth and resigned from the Administration, Obama would have been defeated for re-election, she would have been blamed, and her own future prospects of being Presidential nominee of the Democratic Party would have been ended.
Lyndon LaRouche presented the case against Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama in an historic press conference in Washington, D.C. at the National Press Club in the weeks following the Benghazi tragedy. LaRouche identified Clinton as a stooge for Obama and as a leading member of the war party, that has given the United States and the world the longest running perpetual war, has created the conditions for the rise of the Islamic State, and has bankrupted the U.S. economy.
Hillary Clinton not only presided over the rise of ISIS and the total destabilization of the entire Middle East/North Africa region. She, along with her trusted State Department ally, Victoria Nuland, created a total confrontation with Russia, which, at critical moments, put her in bed with outright Nazis.
Clinton promoted Nuland, the wife of neocon ideologue Robert Kagan, to top State Department posts, from spokeswoman for Secretary Clinton and the Department, to Assistant Secretary of State for European and Eurasian Affairs, a post from which Nuland presided over the “color revolution” overthrow of the Yanukovych government in Ukraine, using assets from the Banderist Nazi apparatus, that fought side-by-side with Hitler’s armies during World War II, and spawned several generations of avowed neo-Nazis like the Ukrainian Right Sector and Azov Brigades.
At one crucial moment in the overthrow of Yanukovych, Nuland boasted to an audience at the National Press Club in Washington that the U.S. had spent $5 billion on the Ukraine “democracy” campaign since the breakup of the Soviet Union.
That 2013-2014 coup d’etat in Kiev marked the dramatic escalation of the Obama Administration’s already-ongoing provocations against Russian President Vladimir Putin, actions that now include the deployment of NATO forces on the borders of Russia for the first time since the Nazi invasion of the Soviet Union in World War II.
It was Obama and Clinton, joined at the hips, who destroyed the U.S.-Russian relationship, and have now put the world on a dangerous course towards general war, and even potentially a thermonuclear war of extinction.
This is the real Obama-Clinton legacy.
Hillary Clinton detests the fact that this is her true record and that Lyndon LaRouche has fearlessly made this truth available to the American people and the world.