Presumed Republican presidential hopeful Jeb Bush said on Sunday that he would have authorized the 2003 invasion of Iraq, though he acknowledged mistakes made after Saddam Hussein’s downfall, AFP reported.
Bush pointed out that Democratic frontrunner Hillary Clinton voted in favor of authorizing the use of force in Iraq ahead of the invasion.
“I would have (authorized the invasion), and so would have Hillary Clinton, just to remind everybody,” Bush told Fox News in an interview to be aired Monday and of which excerpts were released Sunday.
“And so would almost everybody that was confronted with the intelligence they got,” he pointed out.
Bush criticized American policy at the time for failing to focus on security first, saying that led the Iraqis to turn against the military.
But he also denied that security was a major point of contention between him and his brother, then-president George W. Bush, who ordered the invasion.
“By the way, guess who thinks that those mistakes took place as well? George W. Bush,” Jeb Bush said.
“Yes, I mean, so just for the news flash to the world, if they’re trying to find places where there’s big space between me and my brother, this might not be one of those,” he added.
While he has not yet formally announced his candidacy, Bush has been critical of both Clinton as well as of current President Barack Obama.
He recently criticized the White House for its reaction to Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu’s speech to Congress and said, even before the speech was given, that he was “eager” to hear what Netanyahu had to say to Congress.
Last month, Bush expressed his discontent that Obama had held a meeting with Cuban leader Raul Castro.
In a post on Twitter, Bush wondered why Obama had met with Castro while snubbing Netanyahu when he visited Washington.
“Obama meets with Castro but refused to meet w/ @netanyahu. Why legitimize a cruel dictator of a repressive regime?” wrote Bush.
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