Romney on Middle East: 'Hope Is Not a Strategy'

Candidate attacks Obama in 'major' foreign policy speech
By Matt Cantor,  Newser Staff
Posted Oct 8, 2012 6:22 AM CDT
Updated Oct 8, 2012 11:33 AM CDT
Romney on Middle East: 'Hope Is Not a Strategy'
Mitt Romney gets out of his vehicle before he boards his campaign plane in Orlando, Fla., Sunday, Oct. 7, 2012.   (AP Photo/Charles Dharapak)

Seeking to shore up his foreign policy credentials, Mitt Romney delivered a major speech today in Virginia attacking President Obama's performance overseas and outlining his own plans. "The president hopes for a safer, freer, and a more prosperous Middle East," Romney declared, according to the Washington Post. "I share that hope. But hope is not a strategy." He accused Obama of "passivity," criticized his decision to withdraw troops from Iraq, and called for the US to arm the rebels in Syria, the AP reports.

Romney also pointed to the attack on the Libyan embassy, calling it "the deliberate work of terrorists," and slamming the administration's initial response. The central idea, Romney's foreign policy director tells the New York Times, was to call for "the restoration of a strategy that served us well for 70 years." But the speech remains weak on details, the Times observes, and the Obama campaign issued a "prebuttal" before Romney even spoke. Via Politico: "We’re not going to be lectured by someone who has been an unmitigated disaster on foreign policy every time he’s dipped his toe in the foreign policy waters." (More President Obama stories.)

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