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Rand Paul Says Iraq Surge ‘Worked’

Something strange is happening to Senator Rand Paul. Since the beginning of his presidential campaign Paul has started to change his positions on a number of issues related to foreign policy and defense spending – issues that previously helped define his political identity.

First, in a surprise to many, Senator Paul signed on to a public letter to Iran that attempted to sabotage a nuclear weapons deal and start a war between the US and Iran. Then Paul argued – in complete contradiction to his history and purported libertarian beliefs – for increasing the defense budget.

Now Senator Paul is claiming the surge in Iraq “worked” despite the overwhelming evidence that the program merely emboldened a corrupt government in Baghdad to pursue unrestrained Shiite domination of Iraq – a dynamic that ultimately paved the way for ISIS to enter the country with Sunni support.

“Whether or not the surge worked–obviously, it worked,” said Paul, responding to a question from Bloomberg. “It was a military tactic and it worked. In fact, some of the ideas from the surge could be used again. In fact, the main problem we have with ISIS is that the Sunni population is either indifferent, supportive, or hates the Shiite government more than it hates ISIS.”

It is hard to figure out which part of this statement is worse – the complete abandonment of previously held principles or the idiotic analysis that claims something “worked” while acknowledging it did not fix the underlying problem. In any case, neither aspect of Paul’s statement is very confidence inspiring for a would-be president.

Senator Rand Paul may have never been a serious candidate for president, but he is proving to be more of a joke with each lame split-the-baby pandering attempt. He seems to have forgot that the reason people were interested in him was his breaking with Republican establishment orthodoxy, not the embracing of it.

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Dan Wright

Dan Wright

Daniel Wright is a longtime blogger and currently writes for Shadowproof. He lives in New Jersey, by choice.

24 Comments

  1. dubinsky
    May 19, 2015 at 12:10 pm

    Rand Paul is a pathetic figure and best kept out of the house and confined to the barn

  2. bsbafflesbrains
    May 19, 2015 at 12:10 pm

    After the revolution let’s legislate campaign finance reform that removes the profit incentive for running for President. Call it the ACA (Anti Clowncar Act). Rand like his father before him will have a long and unsuccessful career running for Pres every four years but banking cash and favors.

  3. disqus_tu7SEHpgGp
    May 19, 2015 at 12:27 pm

    “…a dynamic that ultimately paved the way for ISIS to enter the country with Sunni support.”

    Um. My understanding is that the originator of ISIS is a Sunni General without a job from Saddam’s army when Bush the Moron’s administration got the US to invade Iraq. Many Sunni want the Iraqi rulers to stop harassing them.

    In my humble opinion, the guy who can get the white gangs in Texas to play nice with each other gets my vote to run Iraq.

  4. ThingsComeUndone
    May 19, 2015 at 12:43 pm

    “Whether or not the surge worked–obviously, it worked,” said Paul,

    First he questions whether the Surge worked then claims it worked his subconcious mind blurted the truth then his conscious mind corrected him by lying. I assume the military industrial complex and the Israel lobby have gotten to him.

  5. ThingsComeUndone
    May 19, 2015 at 12:47 pm

    Rand Paul without the anti war vote still has the racist vote (Dad’s racist newsletter and the Confedrate Avenger controversy ) plus the Free Market types who blame government for their failures in business and life. But he splits that vote with every GOP Presidential Candidate Rand’s case for president was dependent on him attracting younger voters to the GOP.

  6. bsbafflesbrains
    May 19, 2015 at 12:48 pm

    Where did his Dad stand on Iraq war? I think all he is doing is using his Khardashian like fame to collect donor money and then adopt whatever position the donor tells him. If we gave him enough money he would come out in favor of single payer and raising the “DEATH” tax.

  7. ThingsComeUndone
    May 19, 2015 at 12:49 pm

    So Is Rand going to argue he agrees with Jeb now and would attack Iraq knowing what we know now? Is Rand taking the heat off Jeb in return for a place in his WH?

  8. ThingsComeUndone
    May 19, 2015 at 12:57 pm

    Rand sold out

  9. bsbafflesbrains
    May 19, 2015 at 1:15 pm

    To sellout he would have had to originally stand for something.

  10. ThingsComeUndone
    May 19, 2015 at 1:28 pm

    I stand corrected

  11. ThingsComeUndone
    May 19, 2015 at 1:33 pm

    “Ron Paul: The Iraq War Was Sold On Lies”

    ““President Obama last year ordered the US military back into Iraq for the third time. It seems the Iraq ‘surge’ and the Sunni ‘Awakening,’ for which General David Petraeus had been given much credit, were not as successful as was claimed at the time.”

    ““We recently gained even more evidence that the initial war was sold on lies and fabrications. The CIA finally declassified much of its 2002 National Intelligence Estimate on Iraq, which was the chief document used by the Bush Administration to justify the US attack.”

    ““It is hard to believe that in a society supposedly governed by the rule of law, US leaders can escape any penalty for using blatantly false information – that they had to know at the time was false – to launch a pre-emptive attack on a country that posed no threat to the United States.” http://www.voicesofliberty.com/article/ron-paul-the-iraq-war-was-sold-on-lies/ Ron needs to talk to his son.

  12. bsbafflesbrains
    May 19, 2015 at 1:34 pm

    When will a real progressive win the powerball and buy a Senate seat? It could happen, I will lend you a dollar.

  13. ThingsComeUndone
    May 19, 2015 at 1:42 pm

    “There’s a fable going around now that the intelligence about Iraqi weapons of mass destruction was all cooked by political pressure, that there was a big political conspiracy to lie us into war.” https://mgpaquin.wordpress.com/2015/05/19/brooks-cohen-and-nocera-22/ Bobo is claiming we were not lied into war, Rand is claiming the Surge worked the GOP are all saying the exact same thing at the same time and what they are saying is war. More troops to Iraq an attack on Iran, Syria ?

  14. Coach Bill
    May 19, 2015 at 2:33 pm

    …with each lame split-the-baby pandering attempt.

    It’s the Republican primary and pandering is one of the game stats. Perhaps we should have a “best pander of the week” contest.

  15. Bluedot
    May 19, 2015 at 4:03 pm

    The surge worked so well it gave birth to ISIS. And disbanding the Iraqi army provided all the trained leadership for the Caliphate. Good job Bush.

  16. bsbafflesbrains
    May 19, 2015 at 4:05 pm

    Makes you wonder what was in that bag full of Democracy seeds Bush/Cheney planted. Maybe they got Failure seeds instead.

  17. sisterlauren
    May 19, 2015 at 8:55 pm

    If the invasion was a massive rape, then what was the “surge?”

  18. sisterlauren
    May 19, 2015 at 8:56 pm

    No doubt.

  19. sisterlauren
    May 19, 2015 at 8:58 pm

    If you are a rape victim, then if you survived it you are defined as a ‘winner’.

    The ones who die are the losers. When it comes to rape there are a lot of losers.

  20. sisterlauren
    May 19, 2015 at 9:08 pm

    He started pandering to Israel right after I said no one could get elected without their support.

  21. sisterlauren
    May 19, 2015 at 10:38 pm

    Having grown up in Washington DC, he grew up under the watchful eye of COINTELPRO, the CIA funded and government controlled mind control programing program, so I would not trust him at all, not in any way, shape, or form.

    I would not trust any politician’s child who grew up in Washington D.C. for the very same reason: I think it is highly and very likely that they have ALL been fully and totally corrupted and mind controlled by the CIA’s mind control programs.

  22. Dbutch
    May 20, 2015 at 1:01 pm

    The surge worked only in that the US military could make a “post hoc ergo propter hoc” claim without looking too ridiculous.

    Juan Cole made a pretty good case back at the time that what really happened was that the surge started about the time the Shia were wrapping up their ethnic cleansing of what had been mixed cities and neighborhoods. The drop in violence, in his interpretation, had more to do with “job done” (or would “mission accomplished” be more apt) than “oops, the US is back, better knock it off”.

  23. FoonTheElder
    May 21, 2015 at 3:26 pm

    Those were bags of US dollars that disappeared as soon as they landed at the Baghdad airport, as they were quickly shuffled off to Swiss banks.

  24. FoonTheElder
    May 21, 2015 at 3:27 pm

    It obviously worked because Dick Cheney and Fox News said it did.