Newspaper article Charleston Gazette Mail

Clinton Blasts Trump over Military, Putin

Newspaper article Charleston Gazette Mail

Clinton Blasts Trump over Military, Putin

Article excerpt

CHARLOTTE, N.C. - Hillary Clinton blasted Donald Trump Thursday for his condemnation of American military generals and his praise for Russian President Vladimir Putin, saying her Republican opponent had "failed" at proving he can be commander in chief. "Every Republican holding or seeking office in this country should be asked if they agree with Donald Trump about these statements, Clinton said in a news conference the morning after both candidates appeared at a national security forum.

Trump did not directly respond to Clinton's critique Thursday. At a speech in Cleveland, he tagged his Democratic opponent with a new nickname - "trigger-happy Hillary and repeated his incorrect claim that he opposed the war in Iraq "from the beginning.

Still, the government's most senior Republican stressed Thursday that he does not share Trump's complimentary view of Putin. Speaking to reporters, House Speaker Paul Ryan called Putin "an aggressor that does not share our interests.

The discussion followed a national security forum. Clinton was challenged on her email use at the State Department and her vote for the 2003 invasion of Iraq.

- The Associated Press

She also fleshed out several national security priorities if she is elected, including trying to take out the leader of the Islamic State and vowing to defeat the extremist group without putting U.S. troops on the ground in Iraq or Syria.

Trump did little to counter criticism that he lacks detailed policy proposals, particularly regarding the Islamic State group. He both insisted he has a private blueprint for defeating the extremist group and that he would demand a plan from military leaders within 30 days of taking office.

But he was also harshly critical of the military, saying America's generals have been "reduced to rubble under Obama. Asked to square his request for military options with that criticism, Trump said simply: "They'll probably be different generals.

The Republican also renewed his praise for Putin and his disdain for President Barack Obama, saying that the Russian enjoyed an 82 percent approval rating and arguing that "it's a very different system and I don't happen to like the system, but certainly, in that system, he's been a leader, far more than our president has been a leader.

Speaking to reporters Thursday morning, Clinton suggested she agreed with Democrats who say she is being held to a different standard in the White House race.

"I find it frustrating, she said. "But it's part of the landscape we live in.

With just two months until Election Day, national security has emerged as a centerpiece issue in the White House race. …

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