William J. Astore on the Smearing of Tulsi Gabbard

Congresswoman Tulsi Gabbard is a compelling choice for president in 2020. She’s principled, she’s against America’s disastrous regimen of regime-change wars, and she’s got the guts to criticize her own party for being too closely aligned with rich and powerful interests. She’s also a military veteran who enlisted in the Army National Guard in Hawaii after the 9/11 attacks (she currently serves as a major and deployed overseas to Iraq during that war).

What’s not to like about a female veteran who oozes intelligence and independence, a woman who represents diversity (she’s a practicing Hindu and a Samoan-American), an early supporter of Bernie Sanders who called out the DNC for its favoritism toward Hillary Clinton …

Aha! There you have it. Back in February 2016, Gabbard resigned her position as vice-chair of the DNC to endorse Sanders, and the DNC, controlled by establishment centrists like the Clintons as well as Barack Obama, have never forgiven her. Recently, Hillary Clinton smeared her (as well as Jill Stein, Green Party candidate from 2016) as a Russian asset, and various mainstream networks and news shows, such as “The View” and NBC, have suggested (with no evidence) she’s the favored candidate of Russia and Vladimir Putin.

Think about that. Hillary Clinton and much of the mainstream media are accusing a serving major in the U.S. military of being an asset to a foreign power. It’s an accusation bordering on a charge of treason – a charge that is libelous and recklessly irresponsible.

A reminder: Tulsi Gabbard enlisted in the military to serve her country in the aftermath of 9/11. What did Hillary Clinton do? Can you imagine Hillary going through basic training as a private, or serving in the military in a war zone? (Hillary did falsely claim that she came under sniper fire in Bosnia, but that’s a story for another day.)

Tulsi Gabbard is her own person. She’s willing to buck the system and has shown compassion and commitment on the campaign trail. She may be a long shot, but she deserves a long look for the presidency, especially when you consider the (low) quality of the enemies she’s made.

William J. Astore is a retired lieutenant colonel (USAF). He taught history for fifteen years at military and civilian schools and blogs at Bracing Views. He can be reached at wastore@pct.edu. Reprinted from Bracing Views with the author’s permission.

23 thoughts on “William J. Astore on the Smearing of Tulsi Gabbard”

  1. My Ford Taurus has three bumper stickers, one reading ‘Libertarian’, one ‘Jill Stein 2016’ and one ‘Tulsi 2020.’ And my neighbors thought my gender identity was confusing and scary… I should just go full-tilt and have one made reading ‘Trannies for Putin!’ Nostrovia normies.

  2. Tulsi’s anti-interventionism is unassailalbe. All the rest of of her policies are fair game.

    I would welcome nothing less than a Trump vs Tullard general election contest. It would force both of them to commit to their prospective forgeign relations policies, along with whatover others.

    1. I’m a libertarian who usually votes for the Libertarian candidate for president. Next year, I will be voting for Tulsi in the Democratic primary.

      1. I’m pretty sure, if I remember correctly, that my state has non-partisan voter registration, where you choose which party’s ballot to vote for in the primary when you vote. Thus, there is nothing to lose by voting in the Democratic primary. However, the primary is late in the game (May) and therefore will have little effect on who the final nominee will be. I may very well cast a vote in the Democratic primary for Tulsi.

        Just to let you know, though, if you are a Libertarian Party member, I would recommend you try to influence the LP’s nomination process as well, as there is at least one candidate for the nomination (Jacob Hornberger), who actually is a libertarian. It would be nice if the LP could actually nominate a libertarian for a change.

  3. Hillary Clinton, when she essentially lost the primaries to Bernie Sanders, supposedly retired. So what is she doing in the thick of political back and forth? Her retirement, or whatever it was, was a ploy. But without her massive political over-presence weighing down the Democratic Party, they are relatively free to choose someone new, with fresher ideas than the old Clinton hawk. Tulsi is a breath of fresh air, a career service woman who is possibly the most antiwar candidate. For her war is not a head trip. She understands it a lot better than Hillary the Hawk. Elizabeth Warren, while she is not as peace oriented as Ms. Gabbard, is definitely a progressive and would likely bring the troops home from foreign wars.

  4. I should also say that I agree with William J. Astore that Tulsi Gabbard was smeared. That is inevitable. It happens to every serious and partially successful candidate for national office, especially the presidency, who comes out strongly for peace.

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