March 28, 2011
Former Minnesota Governor Tim Pawlenty today criticized President Obama and Hillary Clinton for their handling of the political crisis in Syria.
Pawlenty told radio host Hugh Hewitt that Obama should take a harder line on President Bashar al-Assad, and dismissed the notion -- reported in the New York Times -- that Administration officials view Assad as a partner for peace.
"It's a crock. It's a complete crock. And it shows the naivete of the Obama Administration," he said. "To have the Secretary of State on a Sunday morning talk show implying that he's a reformer; to have his Administration essentially being embracing in any manner or degree Bashir Assad and Syria as a peace agent or an agent for reform and stability in the region is either ignorant or frighteningly misguided."
"Bashar Assad is a dictator," he said. "His father killed thousands tens of thousands of people. He is also a killer. And we have an individual there who many people in the United States have been duped into thinking is a reformer. Hillary Clinton came close to referencing him that on the Sunday talk shows."
Pawlenty said Obama should recall the U.S. Ambassador from Syria, whom he said should never have been placed there, and "speak strongly and clearly to the people of Syria that we hope and believe and support their drive towards freedom and getting rid of Bashar Assad."
"Our interests, by the way, in Syria, are at least as strong if not stronger than in Libya," he said. "Here you have a country enabled and accommodated people to go into Iraq and kill American soldiers. They house Hamas and allow them to exist in Syria as they continue to be a terrorist organization in Israel and elsewhere. And the list goes on and on about the problems that the Syria, and specifically Bashar Assad, has caused the region and the world and also the United States of America."post a comment Back to top