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. ALE_in_VA

    Sounds a little like what Rev Jeremiah Wright was saying in his "chickens coming home to roost" sermon, which caused Pres Obama so much hassle. Congressman Paul hopefully won't be called un-American for his views which are based in fact.

    November 20, 2011 03:41 pm at 3:41 pm |
  2. Chris G

    @ Paulin12
    The Middle East doesn't need slave labor. The savings would be minimal compared to what they pay their foreign workers.

    November 20, 2011 03:42 pm at 3:42 pm |
  3. Joshua Ludd

    So, what? We are supposed to believe that our constant meddling int he middle east could not and did not have any effect whatsoever in making a middle eastern terrorist group attack the US? Bush told us to listen to what our enemies said, but even he didn't want us to hear what Bin Laden said initially radicalized him; US military bases being built in his home country Saudi Arabia. Why is it controversial to NOT have a dangerously naive and simplistic view of our history and of 9/11?

    November 20, 2011 03:43 pm at 3:43 pm |
  4. Robert C

    Good that we can have this kind of discussion without people accusing anyone of not being a patriot. It is the duty of a patriot to reflect and think about cause and effect, and then move on in a more productive direction. If we want more respect in the world, we need to behave more respectfully, and more collaboratively. A good place to start is Congress.

    November 20, 2011 03:43 pm at 3:43 pm |
  5. njp289

    @thinkagain, He opposed the Iraq war and was very critical of Bush's presidency. Check out some of his videos during the 2000s, he was probably more critical of Bush than the Democrats were, and he actually meant it. His criticism of this current foreign policy has been consistent, unlike others, who fall under party lines, knocking it when it's Bush's war or supporting it when it's Obama's or vice versa. Consistency is key for Paul.

    November 20, 2011 03:45 pm at 3:45 pm |
  6. D. Urdi

    Well written, nice photo – great article all in all.

    The concept of blowback that Rep. Paul is speaking about is something that is very well known for the Intelligence-community. It's pretty obvious that the intrusive foreign policy of the US (and other western nations) created hatred in the Middle-East.

    November 20, 2011 03:47 pm at 3:47 pm |
  7. Henry Miller, Libertarian

    Ron Paul's views are not "isolationist foreign policy beliefs." There's a big difference between isolationism–refusing to deal with other countries on any basis–and asserting that we shouldn't be keeping troops stationed all over the planet and dropping bombs on people we don't like.

    November 20, 2011 03:48 pm at 3:48 pm |
  8. Butch in the Carolinas

    Ron Paul comes across as a very knowledgeable and eligible candidate for President.
    More people should pay attention to him!

    November 20, 2011 03:48 pm at 3:48 pm |
  9. Gloria

    I'm a liberal, and aside from the laissez faire capitalism stance he advocates..I totally agree with Ron Paul on all his foreign affairs positions. He's correct, and he has the integrity to say, without equivocation, the absolute truth. If only other politicians, Democrats and Republicans had his honesty and integrity.

    November 20, 2011 03:49 pm at 3:49 pm |
  10. Mikky_H

    Another reasonable argument from Ron Paul. I don't agree with a lot of his positions, but he is honest and argues his stance fairly. He has many of the virtues we hope to see in many of our politicians.

    November 20, 2011 03:49 pm at 3:49 pm |
  11. Mark

    It is his last line that is most important "“You're supposed to be able to criticize your own government without saying you're un-American.”....I find it both creepy and chilling, especially in the last few years, the smear of "Un-American" used against anyone that dare criticize just about anything. Palin used it often. The equally offensive "Go live there if you don't like it here" is no better – Americans can say, one used to think, whatever they want.

    I'm not a particular fan of Ron Paul, I just don't agree with many of his policy positions – but he is smart and I would definitely concede probably the only honest one amongst them

    November 20, 2011 03:50 pm at 3:50 pm |
  12. adampeart

    @ Kuewa-
    He's done nothing about this as a senator- because he is and never was a senator. His son Rand is a senator, but Ron has only served as a representative in the House...that is until he eventually moves from the House to the White House in 2012!

    November 20, 2011 03:50 pm at 3:50 pm |
  13. Anomyous

    Just curious what the responses on this board would be like if the name in the headline was Barack Obama instead of Ron Paul.

    November 20, 2011 03:50 pm at 3:50 pm |
  14. Mark in ATL

    Paul is an extremist and many of his positions are pretty loopy. However, on this one he is on the money.

    November 20, 2011 03:53 pm at 3:53 pm |
  15. RDK_in_Mpls

    The very fact that Ron Paul's views are considered 'controversial' is a sad statement of the American mindset. We have a military that is larger than that of all other nations combined, stationed in bases all around the world and plying the worlds oceans. Yet we are so terrified by a tiny group of militant islamists, who are on the fringe of what is considered islamic fundementalism, that we start two major wars while cowering behind the the DHS. When did we become so insecure, and so beligerent? We need Ron Paul, if for no other reason than to restore sanity to this nation.

    November 20, 2011 03:54 pm at 3:54 pm |
  16. Kana

    For the most part I agree with Ron Paul. However I don't think he really has a chance at being elected President of the United States because some of his ideas are just way to extreme.

    November 20, 2011 03:55 pm at 3:55 pm |
  17. joan

    Man, he has so many of you fooled. He wants to take AWAY rights, by outlawing abortion and returning the country to its "Christian" roots, as how HE sees it. He would be the biggest mistake our country would make, next to Bachmann.
    Regardless, he is a POLITICIAN now. He isn't trying to protect any liberties or freedoms unless you believe exactly as he does.

    November 20, 2011 03:58 pm at 3:58 pm |
  18. Gary

    There was nothing new here. As noted in the third paragraph of this article the 9/11 Commission stated our repeated interference in foreign countries had contributed to the attacks. The Commission did not justify the attacks of 9//11 just noted our long history of screwing around with other countries.

    It is noted the CIA also voice this opinion of "blow-back". Regarding the CIA, the BBC reported several years ago they had located documents already in our National Archive which stated prior to the invasion of Iraq the CIA recommended to the Bush administration that the US should repair relations with Sadaam because he had a secular non-Islamic government which would not allow terrorists to establish a foothold and he was keeping Iran in check. Sadaam had already fought the Iran – Iraq war in which the CIA supplied Iraq with counter intelligence and apparently some weaponry. Of course this in itself shows the continuation of interfering in foreign countries.

    On a different note Kuewa, Ron Paul is a representative not a senator. After 9/11 the Bush Administration pretty much labeled anyone that dissented from their policies as anti-America. Paul was pretty much silent for several months but was one of the first to finally say it looks like the information presented in advance of the Iraq invasion seems to have been incorrect. Oddly enough this was what France said early on at the UN and was vilified for it.

    November 20, 2011 04:00 pm at 4:00 pm |
  19. Darryl Schmitz

    @Think Again: Yes. He WAS speaking out... and voting against interventionist foreign policy. His contention right from the very beginning was to determine who did it, who aided them, strike, and get out quickly. What we got instead was a Vietnam-like slow sink into the quicksand, and despite the President's claims we're finally getting out of Iraq, expect either not as many leaving as he'd have you believe... or they're going right over to Afghanistan or somewhere else nearby.

    November 20, 2011 04:02 pm at 4:02 pm |
  20. ric

    He's right.

    November 20, 2011 04:02 pm at 4:02 pm |
  21. EdSantaFe

    Bush and Cheney. Look no further.

    November 20, 2011 04:05 pm at 4:05 pm |
  22. Al

    The one guy on the republican side that gets it does not stand a chance.

    November 20, 2011 04:11 pm at 4:11 pm |
  23. adampeart

    @ THINKAGAIN said: I'm curious: When the Bush Administration was calling anyone who criticized it un-American and aiding the enemy, was Ron Paul speaking out? Or did he remain silent?

    Ron Paul has ALWAYS called out the Bush admin. on this. In fact, it's often Ron Paul himself is being persecuted by his own party for being "unAmerican and aiding the enemy." and war-loving Democrats besmirch him by calling him 'extreme.' Despite party pressures, the man ALWAYS votes on his principles. The first Patriot Act vote I believe was 357 yea's and 66 nay's. Ron Paul was one of the few 'nay's', and I believe the ONLY Republican to vote against it. Now if that doesn't take stones to stand up to the Bush White House, and the entire senate(passed 99 to 1 there) and a large majority of the house, I don't know what does. Isn't it time we have a principled honest statesman as president? Or are we going to continue with the long string of hand picked puppets? This is why Ron Paul is so dangerous to the establishment, lobbyists and corporate cronies who have owned our politicians and media outlets for a very long time, and they're doing everything possible to make sure you don't hear about him, or repeatedly insist that 'he can't win.' It's time to stand for something America. Another back peddling Wall St./War St. shill president's not going to cut it anymore.

    November 20, 2011 04:12 pm at 4:12 pm |
  24. Chris S.

    He's absolutely right. It's not called "isolationism" either... He believes in non intervention. That means that we say "Hey Iran, let's work this out, let's trade together, let's talk to each other and resolve our differences.

    Rather than "Let's propaganda the public to death then attack Iran".
    or
    "Let's stick to our own country and never talk to anybody or anything" – That's isolation.

    November 20, 2011 04:14 pm at 4:14 pm |
  25. Brian

    For those of you who question what Ron Paul was doing to stop these things from happening, or questioning why he was silent when Bush was saying anyone against the war was un-American... go look at his record, and the things he has said instead of assuming. Ron Paul has ALWAYS been against the wars, has ALWAYS spoken out against them and things like the so-called Patriot Act that take away our civil liberties... Ron Paul is more consistent in his beliefs than anyone else in Congress for the past 50 years or more.... and he's never been afraid to tell them. All you have to do is go research it. But I'm sure you won't do that, because you don't want to hear the truth.

    November 20, 2011 04:14 pm at 4:14 pm |
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