November 5th, 2007
08:05 AM ET
15 years ago

Clinton: Bush shares blame for Pakistani emergency

Clinton campaigned in Iowa Sunday.

CLINTON, Iowa (CNN) - Just a day after Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf declared a state of emergency, Sen. Hillary Clinton called the current U.S. policy toward Pakistan "fundamentally incoherent" and said the "failed policies" of President Bush were partially to blame for Pervez's actions.

The administration has "diverted resources, time, and attention away from Afghanistan and from the volatile Afghanistan-Pakistan border," Clinton, D-New York, said Sunday. "They have sent mixed messages over several years now to President Musharraf that rendered our policy toward Pakistan fundamentally incoherent, and now we face a situation where it's deteriorating in terms of safety."

Clinton added that the threat is "in large measure - if not caused by - certainly contributed to by the Bush administration."

Asked if she had anything specific to say to Musharraf who on Saturday suspended the nation's constitution, Clinton said she was "disappointed" and that she hoped Musharraf will be able to move more forcefully against Islamist forces

"He hasn’t been able to sufficiently rein them in," Clinton added, "So his strategy up until now has not succeeded. I would hope he would move to restore constitutional govt as soon as possible. I don’t think the answer to the threats that Pakistan faces is ongoing emergency status."

"He’s already been subjected to I believe it's five assassination attempts, so I hope he takes stock of where he is today."

UPDATE: In response to an initial posting of this story, RNC spokesman Brian Walton issued the following statement: "From her inability to find a consistent position on Iraq and her failure to support funding for our troops, to her opposition to the monitoring of terrorist phone calls as they plot to kill Americans, Hillary Clinton clearly lacks credibility on national security."

Related video: Watch Sen. Clinton discuss the situation in Pakistan 

-CNN Iowa Producer Chris Welch

Filed under: Hillary Clinton • Iowa • Uncategorized
soundoff (61 Responses)
  1. Anonymous, Newport News, VA

    WAIT A MINUTE HERE! Wasn't it Bill's terms in office (for which she cites her own "EXPERIENCE") that failed to do anything to stop the growth of Al Qaedo training camps in Afghanistan? And couldn't that FAILURE just possibly be the root much of the problems that followed.

    Please Hillary, JUST SHUT UP!!!!!

    November 5, 2007 12:48 pm at 12:48 pm |
  2. marquis

    Thank goodness we have Robert, Cleveland, OH in this blog to keep up the intellectual standards. I don't know what we would do without him.

    November 5, 2007 12:55 pm at 12:55 pm |
  3. Jesse, Burnsville, MN

    According to the newest Washington Post/ABC Poll:

    Hillary: Favorable (50%), Unfavorable (46%)

    Obama: Favorable (51%), Unfavorable (36%)

    Edwards: Favorable (49%), Unfavorable (35%)

    Come on fellow Democrats, open your eyes. Not only is Hillary not electable in the general election, she does not even espouse the general vision of the Democratic Party. You want true progressive change, vote

    Edwards/Obama '08

    November 5, 2007 01:02 pm at 1:02 pm |
  4. Moe, NY

    The RNC...oh yes, they certainly have credibility...LOL! I wouldn't believe one thing the RNC puts out there...actually I would believe the opposite of what they are trying to sell. Corruption and lies are all the American people have gotten from the Republicans and the RNC. The more the RNC runs smear attacks against Hillary, the more I am determined to vote for her.

    November 5, 2007 01:11 pm at 1:11 pm |
  5. Anonymous

    Hillary, you have no credibility at all to speak on any issue. Go back to Arkansas.

    November 5, 2007 01:11 pm at 1:11 pm |
  6. Ed,Ellenville,New York

    I think Musharref just made bush really jealous. If bush could do that he would. He's been laying the groundwork for years. Lock up the press,lock up the lawyers,shred the constitution,see any similarities?

    November 5, 2007 01:14 pm at 1:14 pm |
  7. Ben

    Hillary Clinton is a liar and a cheat.

    We deserve better.

    November 5, 2007 01:15 pm at 1:15 pm |
  8. Ray, Va. Beach, VA

    Unfortunately for Hillary, George Bush is not eligible for reelection and therefore not running in the next election. Hillary needs to stop running against Bush and start running against the other Presidential hopefuls.

    November 5, 2007 01:20 pm at 1:20 pm |
  9. Claude, Mesa AZ

    This woman is delusional...blame, blame, blame, just shut up already!

    November 5, 2007 01:29 pm at 1:29 pm |
  10. BCNU purple state, usa

    The more the RNC runs smear attacks against Hillary, the more I am determined to vote for her.
    Posted By Moe, NY : November 5, 2007 1:11 pm

    That's what they want you to do.

    Larry and Curly called, they want their stooge back.

    November 5, 2007 01:35 pm at 1:35 pm |
  11. Leo, VA

    New York Times:
    "WASHINGTON, Nov. 4 — The Bush administration signaled Sunday that it would probably keep billions of dollars flowing to Pakistan’s military, despite the detention of human rights advocates and leaders of the political opposition by Gen. Pervez Musharraf, the country’s president."

    Don't you think that Hillary is correct to criticize Bush's policy toward Pakistan? Isn't it true that this administration has supported Musharraf? with your money!

    November 5, 2007 02:03 pm at 2:03 pm |
  12. RD

    hey ED
    Arkasas would not elect her to the senate she had to move to the liberal state of NY to become a us senator. Not sure they will take her back in Arkasas.

    November 5, 2007 02:15 pm at 2:15 pm |
  13. Bob, Seattle, WA

    Hilliary will invoke the 'Bush' as many times as she can from here until the '08 elections. She has been advised by Bill and her other 'handlers' that this is the key button to push for her base. She has been advised to push this button incessantly for two reasons. 1) To capitalize on and solidify 'the anti-Bush vote at all costs' and 2) To divert attention from her own 'fuzzy thinking' and fence sitting stance on any thorny issue of the day and her lack of 'solid' ideas on how to resolve them. This is her script and she is sticking to it. Hopefully, the folks will see through it.

    November 5, 2007 02:24 pm at 2:24 pm |
  14. David, Dallas Tx

    I'm pretty rabidly anti-Republican, but (while I recognize that it was stated for political purposes) I think the RNC's comments were in fact accurate. I also appreciate TransparentTrollop and others for calling our attention to Pakistan's history. And lastly, to those who pointed out that to the extent that Pakistan's problems are the fault of the United States, Senator Clinton shares the blame for voting to divert the war effort from the Afghan/Pakistan region to Iraq–point well taken. If you enabled Bush, you share the blame.

    November 5, 2007 02:39 pm at 2:39 pm |
  15. Tim, Omaha, NE

    As always, it's Bush's fault... Ignore facts, ignore history, ignore what happened (or didn't happen) during 8 years of the Clinton presidency... It's always Bush's fault.

    She needs to realize Bush isn't running!!

    November 5, 2007 02:40 pm at 2:40 pm |
  16. WynnEB20

    People Complain when we try to export Democracy to the Middle East.

    Now they complain when there isn't a Democracy.

    Get a story and Stick to it!

    November 5, 2007 03:12 pm at 3:12 pm |
  17. Daniel, Minneapolis MN


    Did you really just slam the investigative reporting of CNN, then cite Wikipedia? You should be ashamed of yourself.

    Hillary makes a good point here. We attacked a country who had nothing to do with 9/11 and ignored the people who did. That's a problem

    November 5, 2007 03:22 pm at 3:22 pm |
  18. Jeff, San Diego, Ca.

    Doesn't she realize that she is not running against Bush ?

    November 5, 2007 03:45 pm at 3:45 pm |
  19. JC, Topeka, Kansas

    The Bush policiy has been you can do any thing you want if you are fighting terrorist. The Bush policy has been any nation supporting his war on terrorist can do anything they want.

    The basic cause of unrest in Pakistan falls to religious extremists and the governments inabilty to deal with them.

    We may have to accept a non-democratic Pakistan for time being. You want bin Laden or you want the Islamic State of Pakistan, I think Musharraf is a little more concerned with a weak hamstrung central government moving to the right than he is a democratic society right now.

    November 5, 2007 03:48 pm at 3:48 pm |
  20. Tony, Tulsa, OK

    You know, as much as I would like the American people to stop thinking in Fox News-supplied soundbytes and knee-jerk anti-Hillary hatred, part of me thinks it will be so much sweeter seeing her sworn into office knowing that the increasingly irrelevant Republican base will be foaming at the mouth. Welcome to the past 8 years for the rest of us!

    November 5, 2007 04:21 pm at 4:21 pm |
  21. Neill C., Montgomery, Al

    Does she ever get tired of blaming everything on Bush?

    Next thing you know the headlines will blare "Pangeaea breaks apart! Clinton says it is Bush's failed policies!!"

    November 5, 2007 04:22 pm at 4:22 pm |
  22. Steve Blaine Washington

    The only problem Bush has is putting up with people like Clinton who are trying to keep him from doing his job. Let Bush and Mussarraf do their jobs and the will take care of the terroist
    situation. Do you want them back here again blowing up building like the twin Towers again.

    November 5, 2007 04:38 pm at 4:38 pm |
  23. Jun, Los Angeles, CA

    Get us back on track, Hillary!

    November 5, 2007 04:51 pm at 4:51 pm |
  24. W

    "I would hope he would move to restore constitutional govt as soon as possible." -Hillary

    YEEEEEHAAWWWW, lock and load boys,
    we've just be given the green light by the "anti-war" left..

    November 5, 2007 05:16 pm at 5:16 pm |
  25. Darko, New Orleans LA

    Hilary's campaign advisor is a freaking genious.

    Bad Bush, blah blah, health Care!, blame bush, blah blah, free stuff!, blah blah, ihatebush, blah blah, imawoman, blah blah.

    Great Politician =/= good president.

    November 5, 2007 05:45 pm at 5:45 pm |
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