But that’s precisely the argument that was posited, recently, by a mainstream Democrat at a progressive news-hub I regularly visit.
Although the commenter’s post includes the concession that Clinton is “far from a pacifist,” they nonetheless insisted that describing the former First Lady, U.S. Senator, and Secretary of State as a “war mongerer” is a left-wing delusion — the result of a Russian smear “manufactured… out of the troll farms of St. Petersburg!”
Aside from feeding the dead and buried Russiagate zombie, way to minimize Hillary Clinton’s lifetime of service to the neoconservative agenda!
Not only is Hillary Clinton “far from a pacifist,” she has repeatedly demonstrated herself to be in the neoconservative vanguard, right there with John Bolton, William Kristol, Joe Biden, Donald Rumsfeld, and Dick Cheney… going way back.
In the 1990s, as Bill Clinton’s co-president — “two (presidents) for the price of one,” they boasted — First Lady Clinton wholeheartedly supported her husband’s draconian sanctions regime in Iraq, which denied potable water to millions of human beings.
That sanctions regime was “genocidal” per Denis Halliday, the career U.N. development worker tasked with implementing the program. In fact, he and two of his colleagues ultimately resigned in disgust, reporting that Clinton’s policy had killed “well over a million” innocents, more than half of whom were children under five years old.
That is monstrous, and it’s not some propaganda from the Russkies, but a frank accounting of the policy, coming from an Irish human development professional who helped administer the program:
“I had been instructed,” (Halliday) said, “to implement a policy that satisfies the definition of genocide: a deliberate policy that has effectively killed well over a million individuals, children and adults. We all know that the regime, Saddam Hussein, is not paying the price for economic sanctions; on the contrary, he has been strengthened by them. It is the little people who are losing their children or their parents for lack of untreated water. What is clear is that the Security Council is now out of control, for its actions here undermine its own Charter, and the Declaration of Human Rights and the Geneva Convention. History will slaughter those responsible.”
Under her husband’s abominable successor, “Dubya,” Sen. Clinton didn’t just vote to authorize Bush/Cheney’s illegal invasion of Iraq — as egregious as that would be — she was among the top few Democrats vigorously repeating every debunked, scaremongering claim the Bush administration was pedaling. Already, she was seen as a future presidential candidate, and she used that clout to relentlessly push for war — spouting Bush and Cheney’s propaganda, left and right.
And unlike Rep. Tulsi Gabbard, for instance (the most fierce opponent of the neocon agenda, at present), Hillary Clinton learned nothing from that genocidal debacle, which, like her husband’s sanctions, killed well over a million Iraqis, mostly innocents, per peer-reviewed studies appearing in the respected British medical journal, The Lancet (as reported by CODE PINK’s Medea Benjamin and Nicolas J S Davies).
(As poorly as the Democrats, writ large, resisted that unconscionable war crime — obviously sold on lies — few politicians in either party were as zealous as Clinton when it came to selling that neoconservative project to the public.)
Later, as Secretary of State, Clinton personally talked President Obama into the regime-change operation in Libya — the greatest regret of his entire presidency and a major escalation of the neocon agenda (which threw Libya into chaos and brought open-air slave markets to the country).
When Clinton learned of Qaddafi’s bayonet-rape/murder, she actually laughed, following that morally grotesque reaction with an even more sacrilegious “joke” — “We came, we saw, he died.”
(Of course, this is the same neo-fascist politician who also “joked” about assassinating Wikileaks founder, Julian Assange, “Can’t we just drone this guy?”)
Also, according to Bob Woodward’s Obama’s Wars, Sec. Clinton helped Bob Gates — Bush and Obama’s Secretary of Defense (an old Iran-Contra figure) — corral Obama into doubling down in Afghanistan, our nation’s longest war… after Obama had repeatedly requested a drawdown plan, only to be stymied and stonewalled by his top generals and cabinet officials.
Furthermore, it was Clinton’s State Department that financed and directed the Ukrainian coup that put oligarchs and neo-Nazis in charge of the country, ethnically cleansing much of the Eastern European/Russian populace until they hit a wall in Crimea.
Leaked recordings revealed that Clinton’s Assistant Secretary of State for European and Asian Affairs – Dick Cheney acolyte, Victoria Nuland — helped orchestrate the coup that ousted Ukraine’s democratically-elected leader, Viktor Yanukovych, and openly discussed who would be acceptable in the new government Washington was setting up.
That would be Victoria “Fuck the EU!” Nuland…
Finally, we must never forget that Sec. Clinton was a driving force behind the Washington/Riyadh-instigated regime-change operation in Syria that has killed 600,000 Syrians and displaced over 11 million, helping fuel the international refugee crisis that’s created a nationalistic/xenophobic backlash in Europe.
Implementing the CIA’s plan to flood Syria with Salafist militants hellbent on regime change — Operation Timber Sycamore — President Obama and his warmongering Secretary of State fundamentally did to Syria what Bush/Cheney had done to Iraq, destroying the country and throwing millions of lives into chaos and despair.
(You will note that the Russians have not a damn thing to do with this history. Hillary Clinton’s blood-soaked record speaks for itself.)
In short, there are very few politicians in America who have been more instrumental to the neocon agenda than Hillary Clinton has. Her history exposes her as an unrepentant, unflappable true believer in the genocide of Arab/Muslims that’s been authored by the neocons — the modern successors to the Nazis, by any standard, with the blood of millions on their hands.
On a separate issue, also broached by the Clinton apologist mentioned at the beginning of this writing…
Finally, with regard to your last point, I really don’t think you want to defend Clinton’s “environmentalist” record, when it was her State Department that pushed other nations to adopt the uniquely destructive practice of hydraulic fracturing — at a time when the climate catastrophe was already metastasizing and the Sixth Mass-Extinction Event was well underway.
[Of course, the water-befouling, earthquake-causing, methane-releasing practice of fracking skyrocketed under President Obama, with nearly 90% of the increase coming from the United States, whose reckless disregard for the unfolding climate catastrophe was also reflected in his dramatic increase of oil production — making Barack Obama the No. 1 president in U.S. history for domestic oil production.
And then there was Obama’s unprecedented opening up of the Arctic for deepwater drilling, an unconscionable act denounced by leading climate activist, Bill McKibben of 350.org:
“No one can really listen to what he’s saying” (re: Obama’s rhetorical concern for the environment) “especially because there was an important paper in [the journal] Nature which specifically identified the Arctic as one of the few places that absolutely had to be off limits if we are to have any hope of meeting our climate targets.”
Mind you, President Obama had already sabotaged those climate targets at the 2015 Paris Climate Summit, insisting that the rest of the participating nations drop their demands for legally-binding carbon limits and liability for polluters.]
Also on the environmental front, Sec. Clinton allowed some of her 2008 campaign’s top donors, including TransCanada — deeply invested in the Keystone XL pipeline project — to hijack her department’s “Environmental Impact” report on that project. Siding with the dirty tar sands-hawking industry, Clinton’s State Department forewent an actual, credible study of the proposed pipeline’s environmental impact in order to precipitously greenlight the project (over 90% of which was completed by mid-2013, thanks to President Obama’s behind-the-scenes acquiescence).
At the time, the National Resource Defense Council (NRDC) issued a harsh condemnation of the process, noting “It’s easy to find ‘no significant impact’ if you do no significant study.”
Likewise, The Guardian published an article excoriating the Clinton State Department’s complete abdication of duty, detailing the thoroughly corrupted “environmental impact” review process — and the close ties between Clinton’s top staffers (formerly her top campaign officials) and the companies pushing for Keystone XL pipeline.
From that article:
“Nick Berning, the communications director with Friends of the Earth, said the newly released documents offer clear evidence of a conflict of interest involving the Secretary of State and her staff, which is unfairly tipping the scales in favor of the oil industry at the expense of public health and welfare.
“’The State Department’s job is to act in the public interest, but this document implies State was looking out for a private oil firm instead,’ Berning said.
“Friends of the Earth received 34 documents from the State Department in response to its freedom of information request, but plans to ask for more. Damon Moglen, the organization’s climate and energy director, said attachments referenced in the emails are missing, along with notes that would have been routinely taken during meetings that TransCanada had with State Department officials. There is also evidence that some official business was being conducted between Elliott and State Department staffers via their personal email accounts…”
Only a blinkered partisan — indifferent to oceans of human suffering — could dismiss Clinton’s indefensible, warmongering history as “Russian propaganda.”
And only an imbecile could mistake Hillary Clinton — a pro-fracking, pipeline-expediting, neoliberal corporatist — for anything resembling an “environmentalist.”
But that’s what partisanship does to otherwise intelligent people: It makes them morally and intellectually incoherent when discussing politics and world events. In pushing partisan narratives, they blind themselves to history and align themselves with the Clintons, Bushes, Cheneys, Nulands, and Boltons of the world.
It’s precisely this kind of obscurantism and hypocrisy — not Moscow’s machinations — that landed Donald Trump in the White House.