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The United States is actually doing all of this now. President Obama has said he might use airstrikes in the future. I have also been open to the same option if it makes sense. I support continuing our assistance to the government of Iraq, which include armaments and intelligence. I support using advanced technology to prevent ISIS from becoming a threat. I also want to stop sending U.S. aid and arms to Islamic rebels in Syria who are allied with ISIS, something Perry doesn’t even address. I would argue that if anything, my ideas for this crisis are both stronger, and not rooted simply in bluster. If the governor continues to insist that these proposals mean I’m somehow “ignoring ISIS,” I’ll make it my personal policy to ignore Rick Perry’s opinions.

I have a hard time imagining Paul’s father supporting any of the measures that Rand has put in writing here. I saw Ron Paul, in a GOP presidential debate prior to the 2011 Iowa Straw Poll, say he didn’t think we should intervene to stop terrorist-sponsoring Iran from getting a nuclear weapon–even going so far as to say “one can understand why (Iran) might want to become a nuclear capable, if only to defend themselves and to be treated more respectfully.”

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Rand’s tough talk in Politico is one of several departures from his father on foreign policy, which shows he’s not nearly as devoted to non-interventionism/libertarian orthodoxy as his father was. Rand also broke ranks from his dad when he said last year that “an attack on Israel will be treated as an attack on the U.S.” In fact, Rand’s father would’ve panned these words as “war mongering” if they came from George W. Bush or Dick Cheney.

When it comes to foreign policy, Rand has already gone out of his way to show he is not a chip off the old block. Nevertheless, his detractors/campaign rivals like Perry are going to force him to continue to make that case. Rand’s ability to do so, without alienating his father’s non-interventionist base that he obviously needs at the same time, could go a long way towards determining his fate in the race for the nomination.


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