Clinton: Sending in thousands of US ground troops would give ISIS a new recruitment tool

"You have to fight them in the air, you have to fight them on the ground and you have to fight them in cyberspace," Clinton says on fighting ISIS.

December 1, 2015 15:06
1 minute read.
Hillary Clinton

Hillary Clinton. (photo credit: REUTERS)


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WASHINGTON - Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton rejected the idea of sending thousands of ground troops to fight Islamic State in the Middle East, saying the move would only hand the militant group a recruitment tool that could boost its ranks.

"In terms of thousands of combat troops, like some on the Republican side are recommending, I think that should be a non-starter," she told CBS News in an interview that aired on Tuesday.

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Clinton is seeking the Democratic nomination for the presidential election in November 2016.

"I don't think it's the smartest way to go after ISIS. I think it gives ISIS a new recruitment tool," Clinton said, using an acronym for the militant group that has taken control of parts of Syria and Iraq and pledged to form an Islamic caliphate.

"You have to fight them in the air, you have to fight them on the ground and you have to fight them in cyberspace."

She also said it was no longer possible to militarily remove Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, telling CBS: "We need to get over the false choice between either going after Assad or going after ISIS."

To do both, Clinton said, she would seek Russia's cooperation in the fight, if not their "active help" then at least their "acquiescence in what we're going to do to go after ISIS," although she said she would welcome an active role from Moscow.

"Right now, we're not going to see a military defeat of Assad, that's not going to happen now," Clinton said.

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