Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich on Sunday blasted the Obama administration’s decision to send 100 American troops to serve as advisers in Central Africa and the White House’s handling of other national security issues.
Asked about charges that Iran supported an alleged plot to assassinate the Saudi ambassador to the United States, Mr. Gingrich said the U.S. goal in Iran “should be the replacement of the Iranian dictatorship.”
Mr. Gingrich said President Obama’s Iran policy has been misguided.
The Republican former congressman from Georgia, who is rising in recent polls after a strong performance at last week’s GOP presidential debate, also said the White House has mishandled the deployment of about 100 elite American troops to Central Africa. They are intended to serve as advisers in the fight against the “Lord's Resistance Army,” a rebel group accused of a two-decade spree of murder and rape across several countries.
Mr. Gingrich said the deployment “doesn’t make any sense.”
“I don’t think you send special ops troops with instructions not to kill anybody,” Mr. Gingrich said. “The United States should intervene in a way that works, if it should a [secret] operation, don’t say anything about it. Our guys show up, our technology shows up, the other side loses, we quietly go off again. If it is going to be overt operation, say we will now do what it takes to make sure we achieve our objectives. Period. That should be the rule of engagement.
“Some kind of nonsensical ‘we really don’t want to shoot you but we’re sending armed troops’ and we know it’s a dangerous area, but really I would like not to do anything. It is just stupid. I mean, it doesn’t make any sense.”
“I’m very disappointed, again, that the administration has not consulted with members of Congress before taking such action. I’ve been under four presidents, and this is the least communicative with Congress of any administration that I’ve ever seen,” Mr. McCain said.
Of his fellow Georgian, former Godfather’s Pizza CEO Herman Cain, he said: “He is a great, wonderful human story. He is a very enthusiastic and very competent person. And I think there’s a certain attractiveness to Herman that a lot of people find very genuine. He’s a good friend of mine, and I’m delighted for him that he’s having this kind of run. I wouldn’t want it to go to the nomination, but I’m delighted that he’s having this kind of run.”
And Texas Gov. Rick Perry may be down, Mr. Gingrich said, but he’s not out.
“Mitt Romney has a huge problem. He’s a very likable person. He works very hard. He’s very smart. And he is a Massachusetts moderate Republican. It is the Nelson Rockefeller problem. I mean, there is a natural ceiling. And if you go back and look at the race last time, he ran into a natural ceiling,” Mr. Gingrich said.
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David Eldridge joined The Washington Times in 1999 and over the next seven years helped lead the paper’s coverage of regional politics and government, Sept. 11, and the sniper attacks of 2002. In 2006, he was named managing editor of the paper’s Web site. He came to The Times from the Telegraph in North Platte, Neb., where he served as ...
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