Clinton: We "Didn't Lose A Single Person" In Libyan War


Hillary Clinton defended her push for regime change in Libya while she served as secretary of state, telling MSNBC's Chris Matthews the U.S. "didn't lose a single person" in the 2011 war. Libya remains in a state of anarchy, and four Americans died the next year at a CIA compound in Benghazi, Libya.

CLINTON: I think that given the bloodshed he has spilled that would be a good outcome but Americans aren't going to do it. That; s not us doing it. In Libya, you had a dictator who had American blood on his hands. Remember, Reagan tried to knock him off, as you recall, because you were working in the Congress. Missed, we tried. When he said that he was going to track down his people and murder them, the Europeans and the Arabs came to us and said you've got to help us. Because what they feared is what we see in Syria. What they feared was an out-of-control civil war on their shores, right across the Mediterranean, right next to Egypt, right next to rest of the Middle East.

Remember, we had those countries helping us in Afghanistan in our very big coalition.

Now when somebody that has helped you, there people have died. They have expended their treasures, to help us, come and say, this is personal to us.


CLINTON: We in Europe, we in the Middle East. If the United States is supposed to say, you know what, that's not our problem. And they can say to us, yes, Afghanistan wasn't our problem either.

But that's not the way you work with allies and when you build coalitions.

So what did we do there? We provided our unique abilities, and they ran most of the air missions. They were really very much involved in helping to, you know, cordon off Libya and eventually defeating Ghadaffi and his forces.

Now is Libya perfect? It isn't. But did they have two elections that were free and fair where they voted for moderates. Yes, they did. So you know, changing from a dictator who has hollowed out your country to something resembling a functioning state and even hopefully more of a democratic one doesn't happen overnight.

And we've got to continue to support the Libyan people, to give them a chance, because otherwise you see what has happened in Syria, with the consequences of millions of people flooding out of Syria, with more than 250,000 people killed, with terrorist groups like ISIS taking up almost -- huge blocks of territory, as big as some of the states in that area.

So, yes, I mean, Libya was a different kind of calculation. And we didn't lose a single person. We didn't have a problem in supporting our European and Arab allies in working with NATO.

And now we've got to support the Libyan people.

Show commentsHide Comments

Latest Political Videos

Video Archives