Hypocrite 'Libertarian' Rand Paul Itching for Middle East 'Nation-Building'

As if Rand Paul (R-Ky.) wasn’t getting enough heat for the seditious stunt he and dozens of other Republican Senators pulled with their recent infamous letter encouraging Iran’s leaders not to go into nuclear weapon negotiations with President Obama, the conservative may have just sullied his reputation as a non-interventionist, non-builder libertarian Republican. On Wednesday, Paul divulged that the believes the United States should provide arms to the Kurds and create a new nation for them – called “Kurdistan.” Up until now, the hypocritical senator has emphasized that he did not want to intervene in any international affairs and is dead set against nation building. As he prepares and rallies support for 2016 elections, Paul still presents himself as a non interventionist, despite the fact that it is completely out of line with his recent, telling comments.
The Senator, who has tried to brand himself as a “different breed” of Republican, said:
“Part of the problem is the Kurds aren’t getting enough arms. The Kurds are the best fighters. The arms are going through Baghdad to get to the Kurds and they’re being siphoned off and they’re not getting what they need. I think any arms coming from us or coming from any European countries ought to go directly to the Kurds.”
Paul then said he wanted to create a new independent country (Kurdistan), redrawing the borders of Syria and Iraq in the process (as if that wouldn’t create any further interventionists.

“I would draw new lines for Kurdistan and I would promise them a country. I think [the Kurds] would fight like hell if we promised them a country. It’s a little easier to say than it is to actually make it happen, because in order to actually draw a new country, you’d have to have the complicity of Turkey and probably Iraq a little bit as well,” the senator added. “There really is no Syria to be complicit with, but there is just a little piece of Syria — Kobani, and in there is predominantly Kurdish. I think if you did that and could get peace between the Kurds and the Turks, and then the Turks would actually fight if the Kurds would give up any claim to Turkish territory.”

Ironically, Paul’s master plan for the Middle East comes just two weeks after he told a group of fellow conservatives and Tea Party libertarians at the Conservative Political Action Conference that Republicans should stop perpetuating the idea of international nation building.
“As conservatives, we should not succumb to the notion that a government inept at home will somehow become successful abroad. That a government that can’t even deliver mail will somehow be able to create nations abroad. Without question we must be strong. Without question we must defend ourselves. I envision an America with a national defense unparalleled, undefeatable and unencumbered by nation building.”

Last summer, Paul was initially against becoming involved in Iraq when the Islamic State barged in from Syria. However, he later supported a U.S. airstrike campaign and endorsed U.S. ground troops joining the fight. Now that he wants to redraw Middle Eastern borders, he’s moving further in his gradual transformation from the libertarian he has tried to paint himself as throughout his entire career, and towards the warmongering frauds that establishment Republicans have proven themselves to be.

Realistically, Paul’s proposal doesn’t make much sense for the Iraqi Kurds or the Syrian Kurds – who have both fought against ISIL with the assistance of the U.S. In late February, Iraqi Kurdish representative Bayan Sami Abdul Rahman stated that although independence is a future goal, her government doesn’t intend on pursuing independence while fighting against the Islamic State. The United States was asked to arm the Kurds, but Abdul Rahman did not say that the Iraqi government “siphoned off” the weapons as Paul so boldly did. Syrian Kurds aren’t on board with Paul’s plans, either. Sinam Mohamad, a representative from Kurdish region Rojava, said that the Syrian Kurds wished to remain in a decentralized and peaceful Syria.

The same day Paul made his remarks, the Obama administration pushed back, stating that the creation of Kurdistan would be detrimental to the fight against ISIL while pointing out that Paul didn’t know as much about the region as he believed he did. A State Department official noted, “We believe a unified Iraq is a stronger Iraq. Iraq’s sovereign territory remains under threat from ISIL and the only way to address this threat is for all Iraqis — Sunni, Shia, and Kurd — to work together.”

Paul’s recent remarks about intervening in the Middle East are just a drop in an ocean full of hypocritical comments he’s made over his career. He’s become notorious for trying to be progressive and work with the left, and then immediately backpedaling, and proven that he’s more far-right than even his father.

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Colin Taylor

Colin Taylor is the managing editor of Occupy Democrats. He graduated from Bennington College with a Bachelor's degree in history and political science. He now focuses on advancing the cause of social justice and equality in America.


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