Katie Kieffer
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May I have your attention please? Will the real Ron Paul please stand up? I repeat, will the real Ron Paul please stand up?

I keep hearing the same three rumors about Paul: He blames America for 9/11, he’s anti-Israel and he’s pro-Iran. So, who is the real Ron Paul?

Does he blame America for 9/11?

No, he’s very patriotic. Bob Schieffer recently interviewed Paul on CBS Face the Nation: “I wanna ask you some questions ... and I wanna start with foreign policy because your statements over the years … suggest that you believe that 9/11 happened because of actions that the United States took. Is that correct?”

Paul answered: “Well, I think there is an influence. And that’s exactly what, you know, the 9/11 Commission said, that’s what the DOD has said and that’s also what the CIA has said and that’s what a lot of researchers have said. … America is you and I and we didn’t cause it, the average American didn’t cause it. … I’m saying [American foreign] policies have an affect but that’s a far cry from blaming America."

Chalmers Johnson, CIA consultant from 1967–1973, concurs with Paul: ‘The suicidal assassins of September 11, 2001, did not “attack America,” as our political leaders and the news media like to maintain; they attacked American foreign policy.’

Johnson says the CIA coined the term “blowback” as “a metaphor for the unintended consequences of the US government’s international activities that have been kept secret from the American people.”

You might ask: Blowback? For what? Isn’t America “a beacon for freedom” as President George W. Bush said immediately after the 9/11 attacks? Certainly our Constitution is a beacon for freedom. Paul simply maintains that the unintended consequences of our current foreign policy are that we provoke violent retaliation while we accrue substantial debt and lose precious American lives.

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Katie Kieffer

Katie Kieffer is a columnist and political commentator. She runs KatieKieffer.com. Kieffer is the author of the forthcoming book "LET ME BE CLEAR."