Gabbard pushes back on Assad criticisms: ‘We heard attacks from warmongers' before

Democratic presidential candidate Tulsi GabbardTulsi GabbardGabbard drops defamation lawsuit against Clinton It’s as if a Trump operative infiltrated the Democratic primary process 125 lawmakers urge Trump administration to support National Guard troops amid pandemic MORE on Wednesday pushed back on criticism over her comments regarding Syrian leader Bashar al-Assad.

The Hawaii congresswoman, a staunch opponent of military interventions, took a shot at “warmongers in politics/media” and accused critics of trying to “smear” her after she discussed her views on Assad during an interview on MSNBC earlier in the day.

“We heard attacks from warmongers in politics/media before. Those opposed to Iraq/Libya/Syria regime change wars are called ‘dicatator-lovers’ or ‘cozy’ with evil regimes. Rather than defend their position, they resort to name-calling & smears. American people [won’t] fall for this,” Gabbard tweeted.

Gabbard has faced bipartisan criticism since 2017 after she met with Assad, who much of the international community say is to blame for hundreds of thousands of deaths in Syria’s civil war. 


She defended herself last month after announcing her White House bid, saying it’s important “to be willing to meet with others, whether they be friends or adversaries.”

“It continues to be very important for any leader in this country to be willing to meet with others, whether they be friends or adversaries or potential adversaries, if we are serious about the pursuit of peace and securing our country,” she said on CNN.

Gabbard’s views on Assad were brought back into the spotlight Wednesday morning after she said she did not consider him to be an enemy of the United States.

“Assad is not the enemy of the United States because Syria does not pose a direct threat to the United States,” she said during an appearance on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe.” 

When asked if Assad is an adversary of the U.S., Gabbard replied, “You can describe it however you want to describe it.” 

Gabbard is among an early group of candidates to join what is expected to be a crowded Democratic primary field next year.

Several other Democratic lawmakers including Sens. Elizabeth WarrenElizabeth WarrenWarren, Democrats urge Trump to back down from veto threat over changing Confederate-named bases OVERNIGHT DEFENSE: Joint Chiefs chairman says he regrets participating in Trump photo-op | GOP senators back Joint Chiefs chairman who voiced regret over Trump photo-op | Senate panel approves 0B defense policy bill Trump on collision course with Congress over bases with Confederate names MORE (Mass.), Kamala HarrisKamala Devi HarrisRand Paul introduces bill to end no-knock warrants The Hill’s Campaign Report: Biden campaign goes on offensive against Facebook McEnany says Juneteenth is a very ‘meaningful’ day to Trump MORE (Calif.), Kirsten GillibrandKirsten GillibrandWarren, Democrats urge Trump to back down from veto threat over changing Confederate-named bases Warren, Pressley introduce bill to make it a crime for police officers to deny medical care to people in custody Senate Dems press DOJ over coronavirus safety precautions in juvenile detention centers MORE (N.Y.) and Cory BookerCory Anthony BookerRand Paul introduces bill to end no-knock warrants Black lawmakers unveil bill to remove Confederate statues from Capitol Harris grapples with defund the police movement amid veep talk MORE (N.J.) have already said they’re running or signaled they intend to join the race.

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