Beltway Confidential

Rand Paul to John Kerry: ‘How can you ask a man to be the first one to die from a mistake?’

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Beltway Confidential,Joel Gehrke,NBC,John Kerry,Rand Paul,Syria,Analysis,State Department,Chemical Weapons,Secretary of State

Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., while arguing against a military strike in Syria, needled Secretary of State John Kerry for supporting an attack in light of his anti-war past.

“I think it’s a mistake to get involved in the Syrian civil war,” Paul said on Meet the Press. “And what I want would ask John Kerry is, he’s famous for saying, “How can you ask a man to be the last one to die for a mistake?” I would ask John Kerry, “How can you ask a man to be the first one to die from a mistake?” I would ask John Kerry, “Do you think that it’s less likely or more likely that chemical weapons will be used again if we bomb Assad?”

Paul was quoting Kerry’s comment about the Vietnam War during a congressional hearing in 1971.

“I’ll ask him if it’s more likely or less likely that we’ll have more refugees in Jordan or that Israel might suffer attack,” Paul continued. “I think all of the bad things that you could imagine are all more likely if we get involved in the Syrian civil war.”

Kerry argued that the U.S. needs to hit Syria in order to enforce international norms against the use of chemical weapons and to warn Iran not to pursue a nuclear weapon.

“Iran will read importantly what we decide to do with respect to the enforcement of this convention in Syria,” he said. “Likewise, Israel. Israel is at risk, Jordan is at risk, Turkey is at risk, the region is at risk, and we believe that the Congress of the United States will do what is responsible.”

 

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