WEB DESK: Hillary Rodham Clinton said Tuesday she does not currently support seeking a declaration of war against the Islamic State, citing the diffuse nature of the threat.
Clinton said in response to a question at a town hall meeting with veterans that the U.S. needs to have a better understanding of the threat posed by radical Islamic groups. She said the U.S. also needs to understand the potential costs, saying, “if you have a declaration of war you better have a budget that backs it up.”
“I’m not sure that makes sense in fighting a threat that is as diffuse and networked as this threat is,” Clinton said.
The Democratic presidential candidate spoke as some members of Congress have pushed for a vote on a new authorization for the use of military force as the U.S. military intervention in Iraq and Syria have crept forward.
Clinton also pointed to the recent Russian plane crash, saying if an affiliate of the Islamic State group “put a bomb on that charter plane, that raises the stakes not just for the United States but for others.”
Clinton has backed the decision by President Barack Obama to deploy a small number of special operations forces to northern Syria to work with local ground forces in the fight against Islamic State militants. But she has opposed the U.S. entering a larger ground war in the Middle East to combat the rise of Islamic militants.
As secretary of state, Clinton advocated for a more aggressive U.S. role in the Syrian conflict and has called for a no-fly zone over the area, a move the Obama administration opposes.