Madam Speaker: And being the wise legislature that he is, Dr. Paul elected to stay here, and so he gets to ask his question. Congressman Paul of Texas is recognized. I’ve learned not to say anything negative about Ron Paul.
Ron Paul: Welcome, Madam Secretary. I do want to get your comments about the stir that was caused by the apology over the Quran. And the administration has received a lot of criticism about this, and I think you’ve expressed some point that maybe this doesn’t help your job any by stirring up the resentment. But the whole issue about apology I think is an interesting one from a national level, and I recall what happened after Mac Demurer wrote his memoirs and he was apologetic about what happened and about how he orchestrated the Vietnam War. And a reporter asked him if he should apologize, and he said, “What good is an apology if the policies are wrong. You have to learn something from it and change the policy”. So a lot of emotions come out on this issue of an apology.
And I keep thinking that those who didn’t criticize him, I don’t think they criticized the last administration when President apologized for using the Quran as a target. So, sometimes apologizes aren’t always all equal. But with even that said, there were torture photograph before and they were very aggravating. Recently, there was urinating on bodies, on corpses, we didn’t particularly apologize for those, did we? I mean, there weren’t apologies there. But some of these things are emotional. But what about the whole idea of invading a country and occupying a country and disturbing their country, creating hundreds of thousands of refugees and suffering. Does it ever get to a point where apologizing about the Quran is rather minor to some of the other problems that we have created in these countries, could can comment on that?
Hillary Clinton: Well, Congressman, first I appreciate the very measured comments you’ve made about our presidents, not only this one, but prior presidents offering apologizes when we are deeply sorry for unfortunate incidents that occurred, that were not intentional, and which we know have emotional resonance with people. The larger question you ask, I think it’s also important to put into context that President Obama promised to wind down the Iraq War, he has done so. He’s in the process of transitioning out of Afghanistan in a manner that is done appropriately in keeping with the very large decisions that have to be made about helping the afghans defend themselves, working with our partners and allies in that effort. And, I think the underlying premises, certainly one that can be debated among Americans of good faith, I believe that we were justified in going to Afghanistan, which is …
Ron Paul: I want to apologize because I don’t want to get on that subject.
Hillary Clinton: And I accept your apology.
Ron Paul: Okay, there you go. But I do want to touch on something else to get a little different perspective on the nuclear enrichment in Iran. Because we hear different stories, even in Israel there are debates. Tamir Pardo actually said that if they get a weapon, it’s not an existential threat to Israel, so I’m sure there’s probably a more nuanced debate in Israel than there is here sometimes. But isn’t it true that Iran has the right to enrich up to 20% for peaceful purposes? The way we talk and hear discussions, most people believe that they have absolutely no right to enrich. And don’t they have that protection under the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty? But it never seems to have a balanced approach to that. And the best I can tell from what I read, there’s no evidence that they have a bomb, there’s no evidence that they’re on the verge of getting it, and even the administration, whether it’s the Clapper or general Dempsey, are saying, “It won’t make any sense to have a preemptive attack on there”. Could you give us a sense of a proper balance here, because a lot of people are convinced it’s Syria and then it’s Iran, and I’m personally concerned about that, because the last thing the American people need is another war. We don’t have the money, we don’t have the resources, and the military is not ready for another war.
Hillary Clinton: Congressman, I would direct your attention to the most recent Director-General’s report from the International Atomic Energy Agency, it’s not an American document, which outlines the concerns about the non-peaceful use of civilian nuclear power. There is increasing evidence that what the Iranians do is not consistent with their right to have the peaceful use of nuclear power. And I’ll be happy to get you a copy of that, because I think you asked a very important set of questions.
Madam Speaker: Thank you so much, Congressman. Thank you, Madam Secretary.
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