Video: Mitt Romney Stresses Need for American Leadership Abroad, a Change of Course in Middle East in Foreign Policy Address
In an address today at the Virginia Military Institute, presidential candidate Mitt Romney laid out his position on U.S. foreign policy, stressing that in light of recent upheaval, it is "time to change course in the Middle East."
He said, "That course should be organized around these bedrock principles: America must have confidence in our cause, clarity in our purpose and resolve in our might. No friend of America will question our commitment to support them… no enemy that attacks America will question our resolve to defeat them… and no one anywhere, friend or foe, will doubt America’s capability to back up our words."
Watch highlights from Romney's address below, and check out a full transcript here.
Romney discussed the attack on the U.S. Consulate in Benghazi, Libya, saying, "As the Administration has finally conceded, these attacks were the deliberate work of terrorists who use violence to impose their dark ideology on others, especially women and girls; who are fighting to control much of the Middle East today; and who seek to wage perpetual war on the West."
The GOP candidate targeted President Obama policies, particularly his treatment of Israel. He said, "The President explicitly stated that his goal was to put “daylight” between the United States and Israel. And he has succeeded. This is a dangerous situation that has set back the hope of peace in the Middle East and emboldened our mutual adversaries, especially Iran."
While Romney said that he'd like to believe the president's repeated claims that "the tide of war is receding," he stressed the need for a definitive strategy. Romney said, "We cannot support our friends and defeat our enemies in the Middle East when our words are not backed up by deeds, when our defense spending is being arbitrarily and deeply cut, when we have no trade agenda to speak of, and the perception of our strategy is not one of partnership, but of passivity."
He affirmed that it is "time to change course in the Middle East."
Romney laid out his strategies for dealing with Libya, Egypt, Syrian, Afghanistan, and Israal.
He concluded by stating that "our friends and allies across the globe do not want less American leadership. They want more."