Ron Paul reissues claims on American policy and 9/11
November 20th, 2011
12:26 PM ET
3 years ago

Ron Paul reissues claims on American policy and 9/11

(CNN) - Presidential candidate Rep. Ron Paul reiterated his controversial stance Sunday that some policies of the United States contributed to the terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001.

Speaking on the CBS program “Face the Nation,” Paul said his views were consistent with analysis from various groups.

Programming note: GOP presidential candidates face off at 8 p.m. ET Tuesday, November 22, in the CNN Republican National Security Debate in Washington, D.C.

“I think there's an influence,” Paul said. “That's exactly what the 9/11 Commission said. That's what the DoD has said. That's also what the CIA has said. That's what a lot of researchers have said.”

Paul said American intervention in foreign nations was a trigger to potential terrorists, who he said were sending the message: “We don’t like American bombs to be falling on our country.”

He cited withdrawing a military base from Saudi Arabia immediately after 9/11 as an indication that U.S. military policy was partly responsible for the actions of terrorists.

Paul has previously said that the military presence in Saudi Arabia was a motivator for terrorists, who were angered by American troops in the Islamic country.

The Texas congressman made clear he did not think America’s form of government and economy were to blame, but rather the specific foreign policies pursued by the United States.

“To deny this I think is very dangerous, but to argue the case that they want to do us harm because we're free and prosperous I think is a very, very dangerous notion because it's not true,” Paul said.

He continued, “You're supposed to be able to criticize your own government without saying you're un-American.”


Filed under: 2012 • Ron Paul • Terrorism
soundoff (538 Responses)
  1. John

    How can this be construed as isolationist and dangerous to our national security? We need to operate on fair terms with other nations when they have resources we need, instead of attempting to bribe/terrorize the nation into submission. Anyone who disagrees with Ron Paul should read "Ghost Wars" by Steve Coll. It isn't an easy read, but it is truly an enlightening book on what led to Osama bin Laden rising to power, the main players from the CIA/ISI/GID etc. and how it was bungled (it is pretty clear at times there were both over- and underestimations of the Soviets, pakistanis and the foreign freedom fighters.

    Russia and the USA both had severe imperialist agendas from the middle 20th century up until the end of the cold war. I suggest people take the time and explore the information out there about our history; you would be surprised how much of our tax dollars (hint: it's in the billions) funded the Mujahideen in Afghanistan and Pakistan throughout the 1980's.

    November 20, 2011 06:58 pm at 6:58 pm |
  2. Mark

    WHAT THE US NEEDS TO DO?
    The U.S. should explore having countries that ASK for its military protection help pay for the cost of such protection. If saudi arabia wants a U.S. military base to help protect them from arab/middle eastern aggression then they should help fund the cost of such protection. same applies in libya, iraq, egypt, israel, syria, taiwan, etc. No more free lunch, let run it like a business. the countries requesting our help are essentially outsourcing their military at zero cost. the only time we should foot all the bill is when it is humanitarian mission (eg darfur) and in such cases we should reduce cost be doing it as a coalition with nato/others. we would also foot the bill when it is wholly to advance our interest (eg afghanistan).

    If and only if Paul can submit a reasoned view should he be considered presidential material. the america people has rejected him election cycle after election cycle BECAUSE the man is a nutjob. he is proof that a little bit of information in the wrong hands is dangerous. he bumps into a LITTLE BIT of information and jumps to wild conclusions – a sane person would seek more information, broader understanding and deeper analysis. Paul is dismissable and should be continued to be dismissed.

    OBAMA 2012!

    November 20, 2011 06:58 pm at 6:58 pm |
  3. dnick47

    In the age of hyper-sonic aircraft (and warplanes), ICBMs, Warhead-Drones, 60+ knot warships, and heaven only knows what's on the drawing boards, isolationism is nothing more then a dream.

    November 20, 2011 06:59 pm at 6:59 pm |
  4. Daniel in Denver

    I'm a cynic by nature, and have basically little if any hope that the USA will ever regain her glory. Still, when I see that there is at least one person on the stage who refuses to pander to whomever the audience happens to be, who has the strength of conviction to call it as it really is – rather than how it's popularly viewed by the 'gimme' electorate – it gives me pause in my cynicism. Thank you, Ron Paul. I still believe the country is unfortunately not yet ready for your message and that you will ultimately be improperly ignored again next year, but I appreciate your lasting gift to us that actually has a possibility of saving our nation – Rand Paul 2016.

    November 20, 2011 07:00 pm at 7:00 pm |
  5. solowd

    Pual is completely right about this, and plenty of other stuff besides. His stances in other areas (economics) are insane, however.

    November 20, 2011 07:01 pm at 7:01 pm |
  6. Chris

    The "Establishment", which controls both Republicans and Democrats and most all of the media, cannot stand the fact that Ron Paul is telling the truth - that is why they are trying their best to silence him. I have voted Democrat in the last 5 elections, but I would consider voting for Ron Paul; because I believe he is honest and he truly has Americans' best interest at heart, not corporations. If Republicans want to convert Democrats to their side, choose Ron Paul as your candidate.

    November 20, 2011 07:01 pm at 7:01 pm |
  7. Lucy

    Ron Paul always gives a thoughtful answer. Yes, if we had not interfered in Kuwait, the rest might never have happened. we need to stay out of all foreign problems.

    November 20, 2011 07:01 pm at 7:01 pm |
  8. longtooth

    On that horrible,inexcusable day, after I recovered from my shock and anger, I asked myself, why was this done? Years have gone by, and this is the first time I've heard someone in government ask the same question, and give a rational answer. What a horrible shame Ron Paul is ignored by the media, and has no chance at the presidency. He's been sidelined as a Don Quixote, tilting at windmills. There's no room for truth in American politics.

    November 20, 2011 07:03 pm at 7:03 pm |
  9. Jon in Idaho

    I'm not a Ron Paul supporter, but he's right on this.

    November 20, 2011 07:04 pm at 7:04 pm |
  10. boehnersux

    He'd be the 2nd totally senile president, right behind Reagan!

    November 20, 2011 07:05 pm at 7:05 pm |
  11. RP2012

    If I destroyed your lawn and and rebuilt it, then put a lawn chair and stayed, I would expect some blow-back from you too.
    Let the middle east decide how to grow their own lawn as long as it doesn't affect anyone else.

    November 20, 2011 07:10 pm at 7:10 pm |
  12. Zack

    Ron Paul is the only honest politician in the 2012 Presidential race. He is the only one that actually cares about the best interests of the American people rather than the interests of big corporations and banks. Please don't fall into the mindset of "I like the guy, but he can't win. So I'm going to vote for [insert stooge's name here]." You've got to vote for who you believe is right for the job. Don't vote just to be on the winning team.

    November 20, 2011 07:11 pm at 7:11 pm |
  13. steven harnack

    Even a broken clock is right twice per day. The only reason that he is a Republican is because of social issues. He's almost an anarchist, but only if he can be the leader anarchist.

    November 20, 2011 07:21 pm at 7:21 pm |
  14. Chris Goldfinger

    This is only controversial for republicans, who profess to believe it's impossible for the US to do anything that isn't perfect for the whole world, while cynically doing things they know promote instability and hatred abroad.

    November 20, 2011 07:22 pm at 7:22 pm |
  15. Brian Horsfield

    Ron Paul is absolutely right, yet Bob Scheiffer did his level best to try to sound bite him so the media could have a headline for this interview. Zbigniew Brzezinski in his book "The Grand Chessboard" and the Project for a New American Century defined the US policy of aggression in the oil rich parts of the world long before 9-11. In particular they called for the US to invade Afghanistan (for the pipeline) and Iraq (for the oil. In the PNAC report they lamented that US public opinion would not support these invasions without a "cataclysing event like a New Pearl Harbor". 911 gave them the perfect opportunity to implement these long planned invasions. it's time to end American Imperialist foreign policy which is isolating the US as a pariah state.

    November 20, 2011 07:23 pm at 7:23 pm |
  16. SkyKing

    I'm no fan of Ron Paul. He's a friggin' idiot.
    But, he is correct on this one. It's not a bad thing or a criticism of the USA, just a fact.
    How would we feel if we had foreign armed forces on our soil, even having military bases on our soil?
    We'd be lividly angry, wouldn't we?
    We'd do anything we could to strike back at those who we feel like are violating us.
    Well, that's exactly what the 9/11 terrorists were doing.
    They perceive the US as world ruffians out to push our way around, no matter that we see ourselves just the opposite.
    I was speaking with a US soldier some time ago who boasted about 'negotiating' with an Iraqi for a leather jacket, where our soldier pulled out his weapon and threatened the vendor. The vendor gave the soldier the leather jacket at any price the soldier wanted to pay. I cringed at the story. I wonder how many American lives that soldier cost us.
    That behavior is how many foreigners view the US, and is what Ron Paul is referring to.
    Ron Paul is a whacko, and he didn't express himself well on this matter, but on this matter, he's correct.

    November 20, 2011 07:24 pm at 7:24 pm |
  17. Mr. Wilson

    I don't like a lot of his views, but he is right on this one. Osama Bin Laden himself railed against the American presence in Saudi Arabia (his birthplace). What he is saying is that we must look before we leap. He's right.

    November 20, 2011 07:31 pm at 7:31 pm |
  18. Frank519

    The more this man opens his mouth the more he displays his ignorance. He might be a genius in economics but he would be a disaster in foreign policy.

    November 20, 2011 07:32 pm at 7:32 pm |
  19. realitypolice

    I never realized that the fact that our foreign policy is a huge part of the reason terrorists target us was in dispute. It seems pretty obvious to me. Are there actually people out there who think middle east intervention is NOT a factor in these attacks?

    November 20, 2011 07:33 pm at 7:33 pm |
  20. Clwyd

    Yes. for once I agree with this man! Our quest for oil, our drive for an Empire and attacks on Muslim religion!

    November 20, 2011 07:35 pm at 7:35 pm |
  21. Jason from Indy

    This is so funny, I agree with Mr.Paul to a certain extent! But I have to wonder that if President Obama had said the same thing, how many of u would be agreeing with him? How many would re affriming their twisted mssage that President Obama hates this country? You folks know who u are, u know whom I'm referring to!

    November 20, 2011 07:41 pm at 7:41 pm |
  22. Democrat

    He's right.

    November 20, 2011 07:49 pm at 7:49 pm |
  23. old11706

    How pusillanimous would we be if we let terrorists keep us from doing what needs to be done!
    That being said maybe there are some things we should not do or have done for their own reasons.
    We went into Afghanistan to hunt for Osama, well we killed him and he was in Pakistan. Shouldn't we be out of Afghanistan or are too many corporations making too much money for us to quit now just because we have no reason to be there.

    November 20, 2011 07:51 pm at 7:51 pm |
  24. RonPaulIsALunatic

    No matter what we did by stationing our troops abroad, or allying with other nations, it should NOT have resulted in 9/11. That is absurd. Ron Paul is a joke and a lunatic.

    November 20, 2011 07:59 pm at 7:59 pm |
  25. Bozzz

    i would never vote for him, but he's certainly correct on this one.

    November 20, 2011 08:03 pm at 8:03 pm |
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