Now that Hillary Clinton is the “presumptive Democratic nominee,” some inside-the-Beltway supporters of Clinton who want more war are being more open about their pro-war agenda. Michele Floury, the former Defense Department official whom Defense One calls “the woman expected to run the Pentagon under Hillary Clinton,” this week advocated for “sending more American troops into combat against ISIS and the Assad regime than the Obama administration has been willing to commit.” Floury said she would “direct U.S. troops to push President Bashar al-Assad’s forces out of southern Syria and would send more American boots to fight the Islamic State in the region.”
It’s not a done deal that Flournoy will be Secretary of Defense; at the very least, we should have a public debate over whether a Secretary of Defense who advocates for more war is the kind of Secretary of Defense that we want to have. As the Democratic primaries and caucuses have just shown, in order to have a real debate, we need to have an alternative candidate.
Lawrence Korb is a former Assistant Secretary of Defense who administered 70% of the defense budget. He is a senior fellow at the Center for American Progress and a senior adviser to the Center for Defense Information. He was formerly director of national security studies at the Council on Foreign Relations. He criticized the invasion of Iraq during the Bush Administration and has called for reducing the defense budget and redirecting the money to social programs. Most importantly, he has advocated for a policy of military restraint and has defended President Obama’s policy of trying to avoid becoming ensnared in Syria’s civil war.
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