- The Washington Times - Friday, September 14, 2007

WASHINGTON (AP) — Republican presidential candidate Rudy Giuliani criticized Democrat Hillary Rodham Clinton and defended Gen. David Petraeus in a full-page ad in today’s The New York Times.

The ad paid for by the Giuliani’s campaign attempts to link Clinton to another ad, paid for by MoveOn.org, a liberal anti-war group, that ran in the Times on Monday. The MoveOn ad accused Petraeus of “cooking the books” on the Iraq war and played off his name, asking, “General Petraeus or General Betray Us?”

“These times call for statesmanship, not politicians spewing political venom,” Giuliani is quoted in his campaign’s ad.

The Giuliani accuses Clinton, a New York senator, of participating in a “character attack” against Petraeus, citing her comments during a congressional hearing that the general’s progress report on Iraq required a “willing suspension of disbelief.”

Petraeus and U.S. Ambassador Ryan Crocker told Congress that while Iraq remains mostly dysfunctional, violence has decreased since the influx of 30,000 additional troops earlier this year.

Responding to Giuliani’s criticism, Clinton campaign spokesman Phil Singer said Giuliani “supports George Bush’s Iraq policy and believes it is working.”

“Senator Clinton knows it isn’t and will keep up her efforts to end the war,” Singer said. “She believes the best way to honor our heroes in Iraq is to bring them home.”

A conservative group, Freedom’s Watch, which supports President Bush’s Iraq war strategy, also plans a print ad in the Times and has demanded the same $65,000 rate that the liberal group paid for its full-page ad. Giuliani is getting the same rate.

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