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McCain is correct that Clinton took heat from anti-war protestors for her Aug. 20 comments on the surge and how it was working, and she did issue a statement two days later attempting to clarify her position. But McCain cherry-picks from her comments and incorrectly suggests she flip-flopped on how well the surge has worked and that she was prompted to support a troop withdrawal because of the recent criticsm.
In fact, she made that point in the original speech, as well as in Wednesday's statement.
On Monday, Clinton made headlines when she told the annual meeting of the Veterans of Foreign Wars in Kansas City that, "We've begun to change tactics in Iraq, and in some areas, particularly in al Anbar province, it's working."
But she also told the VFW she didn't believe the conflict in Iraq could be solved militarily, or that U.S. troops should be policing a civil war. "The best way of honoring their service is by beginning to bring them home," she said. McCain's statement does not mention that part of her speech.
On Aug. 22, Clinton's Senate office issued a statement saying she hasn't changed her position: "The surge was designed to give the Iraqi government time to take steps to ensure a political solution to the situation. It has failed to do so…. It is abundantly clear that there is no military solution to the sectarian fighting in Iraq. We need to stop refereeing the war, and start getting out now."
Indeed, Clinton introduced legislation in February in the Senate, S. 670, to withdraw troops from Iraq.
Editor's note: This statement was rated Barely True when it was published. On July 27, 2011, we changed the name for the rating to Mostly False.
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