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tv   Former Governor Jeb Bush R-FL Remarks on Foreign Policy  CSPAN  August 16, 2015 12:35pm-1:16pm EDT

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>> [indistinct chatter]
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>> [indistinct chatter] >> i just want to let you know i think you are -- [indiscernible] >> [indistinct chatter]
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>> walking through the iowa state fair with bernie sanders yesterday. shows berniestory sanders has moved past hillary clinton in new hampshire. that leads them to ask, are the polls skewed? some republicans have said that
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trump's rise in the polls vastly overstate his standing for the gop nomination because the polls are surveying people who, despite what they tell pollsters, what actually cast ballots. they write that the argument. showed the orc poll real estate magnet with a significant lead in iowa trailed by ben carson. you can see ben carson's big later today -- ben carson's big later today live at 5:00 your on c-span. then george pataki steps onto the des moines register's soapbox stage. we had that live here on c-span at 5:30 this afternoon. our coverage continues all week. tomorrow, wisconsin governor scott walker is live at 11:00 a.m. eastern. then the only woman in the ,epublican field, carly fiorina taking the stage at 1:00 p.m.
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and at 4:00 eastern, it is senator lindsey graham. all that live on c-span tomorrow. former florida governor jeb bush spent a couple of hours talking with fairgoers. he met up with chuck grassley and joni ernst and took questions from reporters. take a listen to the gop candidate getting a question about polls. >> -- seeing a strong leadership and that is something i think uncle of candidates -- i think our candidates bring to the table. >> -- mr. bush: the polls are allowed and. state the day of the fair, there are people moving up, moving down. i will remind you that my dad in 1980 was probably a side note at this point. and at the last time around, there were candidates that were waiting at this point that never even made it to the starting line. you have to organize. you have to get people to commit to attending the caucuses,
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recruiting others to go to the caucuses. you have to go campaign. when i campaign, i get my passion and appeal all in. i come and i go, now come after that -- i mean, that is the way it works here. >> [indiscernible] mr. bush: no, not at all. >> are you all in here? mr. bush: i in competitive. you have to show respect for iowans. they are discerning voters. and i do think leadership matters a lot. you see what is going on in the world today, we need to reengage and be the leader in the world to credit us if her world for ourselves and the rest of the world. we are not going to grow economically -- that there will be security. i think the president's efforts to negotiate with iran -- today we are having secretary kerry to victory dance in cuba -- it is
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heartbreaking to see the lack of to leadership. and we are going to pay a price. the next president is going to have to restore the relationships to keep security and we will have to rebuild the military. and will have to have a strategy to deal with the rising tide of islamic terrorism. >> you can see all our coverage of the iowa state fair and the here is more from jeb bush, speaking at the reagan presidential library about his plan to defeat isis. >> [applause] thank you all. >> [applause] mr. bush: thank you very much. >> [applause] mr. bush: thank you so much. thank you so much. what an honor to be here. mike, it is great seeing you. dennis.
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i have such fond memories campaigning -- not so much fond memories campaigning against the reagan family -- >> [laughter] mr. bush: campaigning with the reagan family was in incredible joy. i want to thank everybody that has opened up this beautiful place. it is good to be with you. i appreciate the hospitality of the ronald reagan presidential library. i bring greetings from the wonderful guy who is still very proud to have been ronald reagan's vice president. >> [applause] mr. bush: that competition turned into friendship. and the better my dad got to know ronald reagan, the more he admired and loved him. on the way here this afternoon, and made a call to mrs. reagan to thank her for this honor and to let her know that many, many americans love her very, very much. >> [applause]
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mr. bush: in many ways, that's name and the qualities it brings to mind is still the standard. a leader of clarity and resolve, not given to idle words, it was president reagan who took command of events, rebuilt america's strengths, and moved to the world towards peace. and morally, he conceded nothing to america's enemies. he believed that the cold war not justone -- won endlessly managed. and in the end, he put an end of an age of conflict behind us. we don't always give out peace prizes for that, but peace is what ronald reagan left behind and that is the legacy of a good and great man. >> [applause] mr. bush: in our time, as well,
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it is strength and will and clarity of purpose that will make all the difference. good things happen when america is engaged with friends and allies, alert to danger, resolved to deal with threats before they become catastrophes. we have seen how in recent years -- how critical it when of those principles is to our security because when it counted most, they were missing. to really grasp what the next president will face, we have to look candidly at a few policies that have gone very wrong in these years. above all, and what we used to call the war on terror. despite elaborate efforts by the administration to avoid even calling it by name, one of the gravest threats we face today comes from radical islamic terrorists. the terrorists are possessed -- >> [applause] the terrorists are
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possessed by the same violent ideology that give us 9/11 and they are on the offensive and gaining ground. it is not true, and was wishful thinking by the administration to claim that the tide of war is receding. the reality is that radical islam has been spreading like a pandemic across the middle east, throughout africa, and to parts of asia. even in the nations of the west, finding recruits in europe and the united states. here is another stark reality. seven years ago, the long-awaited jihadist caliphate existed only in the fevered imagination of the terrorists. today, the radicals of -- radicals' caliphate occupies a stretch of land larger than indiana. isis controls large herds of two countries. and is gaining influence and others. and yet well into this nightmare, president obama's administration, by its own
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admission, has no strategy to stop it. in place of one, they are pursuing a minimalist approach of incremental escalation. the results have been a creeping u.s. involvement without any strategic results. the worst of both worlds. a year of limited strikes and other half measures have made little discernible difference in the sum total of the isis danger. a halting, ineffective effort against them has only emboldened these terrorists, leaving the pandemic unchecked. , and otheralluja cities that american and allied troops at that of a bright i now under the black flag of isis. died to take control of our now under the black flag of isis. reserved forred is christians and other religious
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minorities. in the middle east today, we are witnessing the mass persecution and the exit this of the followers of jesus christ. nor is any allowance made for the adherence of islam found lacking in sealed by isis, which has a filled mass graves with innocent muslims. potential recruits of isis, ready for their own taste of violence, can even follow it all on social media. it is a time when mass murderers have twitter handles, facebook and instagram pages, using these to add the veneer of glamour to their exploits. we need to work with the owners of these relevant companies to give careful thought and how we address this problem. isis followers worldwide, is hailed as the strong force, the glorious cleanser and restore of islam. -- restorer of islam. this helps explain the spread of isis in the middle east and beyond, including thousands
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recruited from europe and more than 100 from america. giving us isis terrorists with western passports. the islamic state and its followers are in asymmetric threat, needing just one big strike to inflict devastation. we are facing in isis and its ideology -- an isis and its ideology, to borrow a phrase, the focus of evil in the modern world. and civilizations everywhere have a duty to oppose and defeat this enemy. no leader or policymaker involved will claim to have gotten everything right in the region, barack especially, yet in a long experience that includes failures of intelligence and military sent ask, one moment stands out in memory as the turning point we had all been waiting for. and that was the surge of military and diplomatic operations that turned up and stores victory. it was a success, brilliant,
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heroic, and costly. and this nation will never forget the courage and sacrifice that made it all possible. >> [applause] mr. bush: so why was the success of the surge followed by a withdrawal from iraq? that premature withdrawal was the fatal error, creating the voice that isis moved in to fill and that iran has exploited to the full as well. isis group welty united states disengaged from the middle east. and where was the secretary of state, where was clinton and all of this? like the president himself, she had opposed the surge. then joined in claiming credit for its success. then stood by as that hard-won victory by american allied forces was thrown away.
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in all of her record-setting travels, she stopped by iraq exactly once. thatan seriously argue america and our friends are safer today than in 2009 when the president and secretary clinton, the storied team of rivals, took office? so eager to be the history makers, they failed to be the peacemakers. it was -- >> [applause] mr. bush: it was a case of blind haste to get out and to call the tragic consequences somebody else's problems. rushing away from danger can be every bit as unwise as rushing into danger. and the costs have been grievous. all of that is in the past. it cannot be undone. another terrible miscalculation unfolding right now is a different story. that would be the obama-clinton-carry policy of treating iran as a stabilizing
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force in the region. when in fact they are deceitful dictators causing nothing but instability. >> [applause] mr. bush: whenever bad things happen in the middle east, from israel's border to the shores of yemen, the influence is really far from the scene. here is a regime that supports terrorism, threatens to destroy israel, has for years been trying to develop nuclear weapons, routinely commits human rights violations, was responsible for the death of hundreds of american troops in iraq, and even now it is unlawfully detaining american citizens. iran, its ally assad, it's terrorist proxy hezbollah, and the secretary and militias it sponsors have fueled the conflicts in iraq that have helped give rise to isis.
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yet the deal with iran confronts a none of these problems. and least of all does it prevent iran from acquiring nuclear weapons capabilities. in fact, the deal prepares the way for that capability. with the lifting of sanctions, the deal also frees up more than $100 billion for advance security services to use as they wish -- for iran's security services to use as they wish. -- have just received a new round of funding courtesy of the united states of america and the united nations. and to this is president obama's idea of a diplomatic triumph. wow. it is a deal unwise and extreme with a regime that is untrustworthy in the extreme. it should be rejected by the congress of the united states of america. >> [applause]
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mr. bush: if the congress does not reject this deal, then the damage must be undone by the next president and it will be my intention to begin that process immediately. >> [applause] mr. bush: knowing what has gone wrong, however, is not the same as knowing how to set it right. the threat of global jihad and of the islamic state in particular requires all the strength, unity, and competence that only american leadership can provide. radical islam is a threat we are entirely capable of overcoming and i will be unyielding in that cause should i be elected president of the united states of america. >> [applause] mr. bush: we should pursue the
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clear and unequivocal objective of throwing back the librarians of isis and helping the millions in the region who want to live in peace. instead of simply reacting to each new move the terrorists choose to make, we will use every advantage we have to take the offensive, to keep it, and to prevail. in all of this, the united states must engage with friends and allies and lead again in this vital region. egypt -- >> [applause] egypt and saudi arabia, the most populous and wealthiest countries in the middle east, are important partners of the united states. those relationships have been badly mishandled by this administration. both countries are a key to a better quit a native regional effort. we need to restore trust and work more closely with them against common threats. capable- have very partners in the united arab emirates. we have a moderate and quite
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from edible leader in king abdullah of jordan. we have an ally in the new democratic government in tunisia. and a fragile democracy in lebanon. nations that are both under assault by radicals and terrorists. across the region, responsible governments need no response persuadingneed no and what the moment requires. meets the unique circumstances in each of these two countries, iraq and syria, in which isis now has territory. and let's start with iraq and the five broad actions i would take as president to help remove the threat from that country. first, we must support the iraqi forces, which right now have the will to win but not the means. as matters stand, the united states has been helping to reconstitute iraqi security services enter a to the kurdish peshmerga. we need to broaden and expedite our efforts to help ensure
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iraqis rebuild their security sector, not only to win against isis, but to break free of iranian influence. that effort should also involve greater engagement with the sunni tribes, whose fighting units served side-by-side with americans to defeat al qaeda in iraq and was then disbanded by the government after the united states abandon iraq. second, we must give these forces the consistent advantage of american air power to cover their operations and to strike with fierce precision. the strategy has to include forward air controllers whose skill and accuracy with severely hinder the enemy's freedom of movement. this would greatly improve the ability of fighter aircraft and helicopters to provide necessary close air support to local ground forces. ices fighters try blending into the civilian landscape. our spotters on the ground will enable us to hit them hard and really mess.
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third, we must make better use of the limited forces we have by giving them a greater range of action. right now, we have around 3500 soldiers and marines in iraq. and more where -- may well be needed. we do not need and our friends don't ask for a major commitment of american combat forces, but what we do need is to convey that we understand -- that we are serious. our unrivaled fighters know that it is simply not enough to dispense advice and training to local forces and then send them on their way and hope for the best. canadian troops are already embedded in iraqi units to very good effect. our soldiers and marines need the go-ahead to do that as well. to help our partners outthink and outmaneuver the enemy. fourth, we should provide more support to the kurds. giving them decisive military power against isis. >> [applause]
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in iraq's kurdish region we have friends and brave and skilled fighters. if i am commander-in-chief, the united states will make certain that the kurds have everything they need to win. [applause] and finally, our strategy in iraq has to restart the serious diplomatic efforts i can help that country move in the right direction. only iraq's shiites, sunnis, and kurds can decide if they will live together and share power and resources in a way that will serve their interests, ensure the survival of their country. they have to know that while the united states is there in measure, we are also there in earnest and for the long haul. that has been a problem of the obama administration. no one believes we are serious because we have not made the kind of commitment that friends make with friends. [applause] they will come through for their country, but they have got to
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know that we have their back. the situation in syria is quite different than the one in iraq. in some ways it is even more complex because we have no large cohesive force to work with. we have seen what ruin and suffering can follow what -- when america does not lead. of 23 million syrians, about 11 million of those have been displaced or fled the country altogether. imagine that. more than 200,000 people have so far been killed in the mayhem. the regime of bashar al-assad is deploying every ruthless means to stay in power. long brutalized for that regime and now under assault from ice isis syrian moderates , lost the fight against both enemies, and they view the regime as the greater evil. it is a sorrowful picture when you think back on how it could have been avoided. exactly four years ago we heard words that still hang in the air
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of the middle east when president obama declared, the time has come for president assad to step aside. then three years ago came another pronouncement. that any use of chemical weapons by assad would be a redline, inviting tough consequences for the regime. if the choice was between silence and these idle, grandiose words, it would have been better to say nothing at all. [applause] what followed is that assad used those weapons again and again and there were no serious consequences whatsoever. having lost our credibility on such an epic scale it is hard to get it back. we had better try. because the longer we do nothing the more dangerous the situation becomes and the more directly our friends and our interest are threatened. our ultimate goal in syria is to
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defeat isis and to achieve long-term political stability in the country. defeating isis requires defeating assad, but we have to make sure that his regime is not replaced by something as bad or worse. the last thing we need in syria is a repeat of libya, where the end of a dictatorship was only the beginning of more terrorist violence, including the death of four americans in benghazi. [applause] syria will need a stable government and a transition free of more sectarian bloodletting will depend on credible moderate forces we help to unite and build up today. to that end, my strategy would be to bring american influence to bear in for important areas. first, a coordinated international effort is essential to get syria moderate
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forces the upper hand. as it is, the qataris, the turks, the saudi's, and the others have been supporting forces in the area. but they are not always working to common purpose. and if there's one thing syria cannot afford right now, it is confusion and disunity. under my strategy the aim would be to bring the moderates together and back them up as one force. we should back them up all the way through. not just in taking the fight to the enemy but in helping them form a moderate government wants -- once isis is defeated and assad is gone. it is a tough complicated diplomatic and military mission, even more than the current situation in iraq. but it can be done. we saw in iraq how islamic extremists can be pulled away from extremist forces. and the strategic elements in both cases are the same. we have to support global forces. we must stay true to our word. second, we have to expand and vastly improve the recruitment
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and training of syrian forces fighting isis. at the moment, too many in syria doubt they can count on us which is what -- why our recruiting and training have basically come to nothing. we have spent half $1 billion on a program that has gotten us 54 recruits. when that happens, you know that the the plan is not working out really well. [applause] i am tempted to be reminded of it costs a little bit more and got about the same. the website. just saying. [applause] the reality is our recruitment efforts have been failing because we are not respected as a reliable actor in the region. we have to change that with a clear, consistent, reliable action that everyone expects from the united states of america. third, we must over time establish multiple safe zones in
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syria. it is a measure of progress that we joined with the turks to create a small isis-free zone in the northern part of the country. that is good news. but we need to go well beyond that by establishing safe zones to protect syria not only for my -- from ice is but also also from assad. we and our partners should declare a no-fly zone in syria. enforce the no-fly zone and we will stop the regime's bombing raids. it can also help stop iranian flights from resupplying the regime and hezbollah and other bad actors. a no-fly zone is essential to keep the pressure on and prevent more needless death in a country that has seen so much of it. when we talk about no-fly zones in syria, precision airstrikes in iraq, or any projection of
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military power to meet or deter threats all of this assumes that , such power is there when we need it. yet, here as well the shortsightedness of the first -- current administration will leave a cost. we are in the seventh year of a significant dismantling of our own military. almost in inverse proportion to the threats that are multiplying. i assure you, the day that i am elected president of the united states will be the day that we turn this around and begin rebuilding the armed forces of the united states of america. [applause] a winning strategy against the islamic state, or against any threat to ourselves and our friends, depends ultimately on the military strength that underwrites american influence. let that slip away and what
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would america be in world affairs except one more well-intentioned voice of the united nations. we don't want that. in any event, any effort of ours to overcome violence and secure peace, a winning strategy depends on maintaining unequaled strength. we can never take it for granted. i might add that this includes strength among our intelligence services. military and civilian. [applause] no group of men and women received so little credit for doing so much to track danger and to keep us safe. these skilled, brave americans can be sure of this. if i become commander-in-chief , they will receive the tools they need and the gratitude and respect that they deserve. [applause] a good many people who serve in our military and intelligence
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agencies are at mid-career. i venture to guess that for quite a few of them they're calling has something to do with their coming-of-age in the reagan years. yet any nostalgia for that time has to recall not only a falling wall and collapsing evil empire, but also the fear and tension and the challenges that could have all played out so very differently. from the distance of decades, even the greatest successes in security and foreign policy can look almost inevitable. of course nothing had to happen as it did. weariness with conflict ran pretty deep back then, along with despair of ever getting past it. but then along came one formidable figure who would not accept that way of thinking. he was the one who mattered the most. it is that way for us to and having to deal with long conflict. and serious threats again on the offensive. in living up to our responsibilities we can always use a little bit more of the
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reagan spirit, rejecting with contempt the idea that conflict must be endless or that the spread of danger and violence is inevitable. it is not. [applause] for generations, american alliances, diplomacy, credibility deterred aggression and set forth peace. this is our future as well, if we are led by a president who is resolute, as i will be, in the defeat of radical islamic terrorism wherever it appears. [applause] we can protect our people, put adversaries back in retreat, get things moving our way again, and move back -- win back the momentum for freedom. in all of this, let us never
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forget that in fighting evil we are doing good. in stopping the merciless, we are delivering justice. in destroying violence we are defending the innocent. this is the work that america is in the world to do. let us meet that duty with confidence, faith, and resolve. thank you all very much and god bless the united states of america. thank you. [applause] [captioning performed by the national captioning institute, which is responsible for its caption content and accuracy. visit] >> thank you. thank you all.
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>> a few questions if i may? i want to assure you i am no making kelly. [laughter] noticed. my keen sense of observation. >> smart guy. you mentioned the plight of christians in the middle east in your speech. in some countries christian communities of been around for more than 1000 years are virtually extinct. does the united states have a moral responsibility to intervene to stop this kind of genocide? up for theill stand persecuted? who will stand up? bob, i have a personal connection to this. are -- havethis existed before but because my daughter-in-law is a canadian-born, beautiful,
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spectacular woman. giving the two of us precious granddaughters i could ever imagine. her parents are iraq he christians. i have been sensitized to the plight of christians in iraq. l, for 1600 years mastectomy and were given and today they are not because isis controls i they will persecuting kill christianst. . they are fleeing. all over the region. not just iraq. there are challenges in lebanon which used to be a peaceful, christian nation. isi-inspiredhe terrorists in the eastern mediterranean that are beheading 18 christian cops. think about the christians being slaughtered around the world. the christian girls in northern nigeria.
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because ir challenge think we have a duty and we have the skills to do this. these are not the most awesome forces in the world. united states is fought wars against forces that were evil, just as evil of this with greater military might. we can take these guys on. we have special forces that are the best in the world. we have military capabilities that far exceed anyone else. this is something of its and a single to the rest of the world that the united states is supportive of people who, through no fault of their own believing in their faith, are being killed and tortured in persecuted. we need to stand up against this. [applause] you were critical of the president's deal with iran.
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up againstyou do this threat? ush:, i think he should've kept what the objective was from the very beginning which is to never allow iran to obtain the capabilities to build a nuclear bomb. that was the beginning of the effort. we have gone from that to having trust that verify kind of inspections to now anytime, anywhere. it's now like secret agreements signed with an agency of the united nations where our members of congress cannot even read them. this is the wrong approach, clearly. i hope congress votes this down. i hope it is with a two thirds majority and if it is in with the president go back if he wants to negotiate a deal within our security interests.


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