GABBARD: Let's deal with the situation where we are, where this president and his chickenhawk cabinet have led us to the brink of war with Iran. It was an imperfect deal. There are issues, like their missile development, that needs to be addressed. We can do both simultaneously to prevent Iran from developing a nuclear weapon and preventing us from going to war.
Q: What would your red line be for military action against Iran?
GABBARD: Look, obviously, if there was an attack against our troops. But Donald Trump and his cabinet--Mike Pompeo, John Bolton, and others--are creating a situation that just a spark would light off a war with Iran, which is incredibly dangerous. That's why we need to de-escalate tensions. Trump needs to get back into the Iran nuclear deal and swallow his pride, put the American people first.
I enlisted in the Army National Guard after the Al Qaida terror attacks on 9/11 so I could go after those who had attacked us on that day. I still serve as a major. I served over 16 years, deployed twice to the Middle East, and in Congress served on the Foreign Affairs and Armed Services Affairs for over six years.
I know the importance of our national security, as well as the terribly high cost of war. And for too long, our leaders have failed us, taking us from one regime change war to the next, leading us into a new cold war and arms race, costing us trillions of our hard-earned taxpayer dollars and countless lives.
This insanity must end. As president, I will take your hard-earned taxpayer dollars and instead invest those dollars into serving your needs, things like health care, a green economy, good-paying jobs, and so much more.
And it wouldn't be just contained within Iran. This would turn into a regional war. This is why it's so important that every one of us, every single American, stand up and say no war with Iran. We need to get back into the Iran nuclear agreement, and we need to negotiate how we can improve it.
Obviously, if there was an attack against American troops, then there would have to be a response. But a war with Iran is incredibly dangerous. Trump needs to get back into the Iran nuclear deal and swallow his pride, put the American people first.
RYAN: You have to stay engaged in these situations. We must have our State Department engaged. We must have our military engaged to the extent they need to be.
GABBARD: Is that what you will tell the parents of soldiers killed in Afghanistan? "Well, we just have to be engaged?" As a soldier, I will tell you, that answer is unacceptable. We have to bring our troops home from Afghanistan. We are in a place in Afghanistan where we have lost so many lives. We've spent so much money. Money that's coming out of every one of our pockets, money that should be going into communities here at home. We are no better off in Afghanistan today than we were when this war began.
RYAN: If the US isn't engaged, the Taliban will grow.
GABBARD: The Taliban was there long before we came in. They're going to be there long before we leave. We cannot keep US troops deployed to Afghanistan thinking that we're going to somehow squash this Taliban.
The above quotations are from NBC News, "Decision 2020," the Democratic candidates debate,|
live from the Adrienne Arsht Performing Arts Center in Miami, Florida, June 26-27, 2019..
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