December 1st, 2007
06:56 PM ET
10 years ago

Giuliani advocates military build-up to counter Putin

Giuliani said a larger military will help counter Russian and Chinese influence.

OKATIE, South Carolina (CNN) - Republican presidential candidate Rudy Giuliani on Friday advocated a strong military build-up by the United States as a bulwark against the oil-rich Russian President Vladimir Putin and his increasing consolidation of power in the country.

"The good part with Russia is we're not in a Cold War, there is no longer a Soviet empire, their desires are still of a matter of concern but they're not nearly what they used to be and we don't want to get ourselves back into that," said Giuliani, who described Putin as both "good and bad."

"Long term the way we prevent getting ourselves back into that, both with regard to Russia, and even China, is to become militarily even stronger."

The former New York City mayor was responding to a questioner at a town hall meeting who asked: "What are you going to do about Putin?"

Giuliani provided little detail on what being "stronger" would mean, other than saying the "best answer" to the Kremlin would be "a substantial increase in the size of our military."

He justified his claim, explaining that a robust military was the primary reason behind the United States' success in the Cold War. Giuliani said U.S. and European demilitarization after the two World Wars was a mistake that contributed to the growth of Nazism and communism, and he also criticized the post-Cold War peace dividend as "way too big."

Giuliani predicted Putin's "energy extortion" would create more global allies for the United States than it would for Russia.

Still, he said he would maintain a good economic relationship with Russia, but would criticize the Kremlin as needed.

"You keep pointing out the ways that which they are sliding back, because Putin is to some extent sliding back, and you keep making the world know that," he said.

The Putin question is partially moot on the campaign trail, because the Russian president's term expires next year, before Americans cast their ballots.

However, Putin's United Russia Party is expected to maintain its hold on power in this Sunday's Parliamentary elections, and it's been suggested Putin could play a role in the government even after he leaves the presidency.

- CNN South Carolina Producer Peter Hamby

Filed under: Rudy Giuliani • South Carolina
soundoff (131 Responses)
  1. Bryan. CA

    Here goes the future nut neo-con Guilianni spouting the "Bush-like"dangerous statements. This man has no business being the commander-in-chief of the most powerful military in the world.

    November 30, 2007 08:54 pm at 8:54 pm |
  2. jmaya, iowa

    it seems Barack Hessein Obama will say anything to win primary. Iowa people don't believe false promises and vote this guy.

    November 30, 2007 08:57 pm at 8:57 pm |
  3. Tim

    How can we pay for this rudy? The taxpayer is already overwhelmed, heck we're paying for the security for your wife, the security of the women you have affairs with and your ex-wive(s).

    Come on, typical chickenhawk, more soldiers get to play chess.

    November 30, 2007 09:03 pm at 9:03 pm |
  4. Davis, NJ

    Wow and to think Republicans would actually pick RUDY. This should be interesting ...!

    November 30, 2007 09:07 pm at 9:07 pm |
  5. AJ, IL

    Wow! Giuliani says we need to increase our military strength to combat the influence of Russia and China. Holy Cow! Giuliani is expecting a war on terrorism and a war on communis...(wait I mean) communist principles, since officially neither China or Russia are completely communist. With Rudy's thinking, he would fulfill GW Bush's vision of World War III, except that Iran and North Korea would not be players. It would the US vs Russia or the US vs China. Please keep Rudy out of the White House and get him back on his 9/11 speech tours. While he is at it, he should concentrate on maintaining his 3rd marriage.

    November 30, 2007 09:13 pm at 9:13 pm |
  6. erika morgan black dimond wa


    November 30, 2007 09:24 pm at 9:24 pm |
  7. John, Pittburg, PA

    This man is a total loser.....

    November 30, 2007 09:25 pm at 9:25 pm |
  8. Doug, Norwalk,CT

    I wonder where Rudy plans to get the money to pay for the build up. Oh thats right the Russians and the Chinese. Great strategy.

    November 30, 2007 09:27 pm at 9:27 pm |
  9. Former Rightie, Pittsburgh

    Another saber rattling war-monger who thinks the only solution is the barrel of a gun.

    November 30, 2007 09:44 pm at 9:44 pm |
  10. Sean CA

    His answer to everything is war or threaten them... This guy is an idiot. Oh yeah and 9/11 9/11 9/11 9/11 9/11 9/11

    November 30, 2007 09:49 pm at 9:49 pm |
  11. Pepe Le Pue

    Military Build up, against China and Russia?

    Giuliani must have a small man complex, always resorting to violence.

    November 30, 2007 09:55 pm at 9:55 pm |
  12. Jed in Texas

    Putin must be using Diebold voting machines too.Lmao

    November 30, 2007 09:59 pm at 9:59 pm |
  13. Bill, Topeka, KS

    Oh, heck yeah. More military spending to warn off Putin and China. Invade Iran and Korea. Heck, while we're at it, let's add some more military might just in case Sweden starts looking dangerous. Our grandchildren will be more than happy to pay off this debt later.

    November 30, 2007 09:59 pm at 9:59 pm |
  14. Jaik , chicago, IL

    Guliani proves how dim he is here. He wants to make a millitary response to Russia, his response is the definition of a cold war. This idiot doesn't think 2 wars at once is enough, he'ld like to go for 3. Tough guy wants to get us all killed. Guaruntee a new hot war within 2 years of him taking office. Guaruntee.

    November 30, 2007 10:01 pm at 10:01 pm |
  15. Cheri MacLean, Raleigh, NC

    New Yorkers know what the rest of the country doesn't: that on September 10, 2001, Guiliani was so unpopular in NYC he couldn't have been elected as dog catcher.

    By September 13, people were ready to elect him as superman, pope, and benevolent grandpa all rolled into one.

    The trouble with a man who can't govern on a day-to-day basis but can function well in a crisis is that he will be compelled to manufacture crisis after crisis in order to look good.

    He thrives on controversy, embraces chaos, and needs a crisis in order to cover up his many inadequacies.

    A military build-up to counter Putin? We need a military build-up to counter Rudy.

    November 30, 2007 10:01 pm at 10:01 pm |
  16. Aaron K, Bondurant IA

    Wow... So Giuliani wants to start the Cold War up again?!?! I suppose peace isn't as lucrative as war, but come on, let's not start making Russia mad again! Do we need to be at a cold, maybe hot this time, war with Russia and then also be fighting in Afghanistan and in Iraq?! Wow, that guy is idiotic!

    November 30, 2007 10:17 pm at 10:17 pm |
  17. Lee, Mays Landing, New Jersey

    So how will we pay for that?
    Guiliani just argued the other day that democrats will raise taxes, suggesting that he won't.
    We are already in a debt hole and digging deeper and deeper thanks to a Republican President and 6 years of a Republican Congress (not one veto in 6 years).
    More and more of our tax dollar is just going to pay the interest on the debt. Any talk of doing anything without being truthful as to where the money comes from is a joke. And that's doubly true when it come from the irresponsible folks that drive us deeper into debt.

    November 30, 2007 10:22 pm at 10:22 pm |
  18. Aaron Kinney, Sherman Oaks CA

    Rudy is crazy. He wants to "build up" our forces everytime anything ever happens.

    November 30, 2007 10:28 pm at 10:28 pm |
  19. Jackson

    Holy cow, this man is utterly insane.

    November 30, 2007 10:44 pm at 10:44 pm |

    Someone needs to get the military back up to it's former strength after Clinton took it apart.

    America needs to retain it's military superiority, not only for our own safety, but also for the peace that a strong military commands. The only way to prevent being dominated, is to be prepared. Anyone who doesn't understand this only has to discover something called History.

    November 30, 2007 10:47 pm at 10:47 pm |
  21. Jonathan, Holiday, Florida

    Why do so many republicans think the only way to solve problems is by drawing guns?

    Someone please explain this to me.

    November 30, 2007 10:56 pm at 10:56 pm |
  22. J. Brown, Phila, PA

    You gotta remember, had it not been for Giuliani, the NYPD,NYFD, and every other possible assistance agency would have been just standing around scratching their you know whats.

    November 30, 2007 11:12 pm at 11:12 pm |
  23. Matthew, Murfreesboro, TN


    November 30, 2007 11:13 pm at 11:13 pm |
  24. David, Oberlin, OH

    This man is mad. His actions, if elected, will result in the US declining economically, losing its global status, or, if worse comes to worst, a global war.
    He is insane.

    November 30, 2007 11:18 pm at 11:18 pm |
  25. Henry Miller, Cary, NC

    "The good part with Russia is we're not in a Cold War..."

    So this guy dweeb want to start one?

    Seems to be the neocon knee-jerk response to most stimuli: when all else fails, rattle a sabre.

    November 30, 2007 11:21 pm at 11:21 pm |
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