Rick Perry on Foreign Policy

Republican Governor (TX)


There shouldn't be any air between us & our best ally Israel

Q: Of late, you have been criticizing the Obama administration for its stance toward Israel. Governor, you have talked about the president's policy of "calculated ambivalence." What exactly are you talking about?

PERRY: When you have the president and his administration trying to second-guess Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu, then I think you see what I'm making reference to: the idea that our best ally in the Middle East, the longest-serving democracy in that part of the world, that there's any air between us and Israel is beyond me. I don't understand why this administration would criticize Israel for trying to protect their citizens and their country from a group who have clearly stated that they will not be satisfied until Israel is wiped off

Source: CNN SOTU 2014 interview series: 2016 presidential hopefuls , Aug 3, 2014

We can't isolate ourselves within our shores; we must engage

Q: You really whipped Sen. Rand Paul in an op-ed: "Obama's policies have certainly led us to this dangerous point in Iraq and Syria, but Paul's brand of isolationism would compound the threat of terrorism even further." Well, he responded today. He said, "Unlike Gov. Perry, I am opposed to sending American troops back into Iraq. I ask Gov. Perry, 'How many Americans should send their sons and daughters to die for a foreign country, a nation the Iraqis won't defend for themselves?'"

PERRY: In that part of the world, we have allies there in the form of Israel and Jordan that expect us to stand with them, to help them. When you read his op-ed, he talks about basically, what I consider to be, isolationist policies. America can no longer draw a red line around the shore of America, and think that we're somehow or another not going to be impacted. We must engage and tactically, thoughtfully, use the assets that we have against ISIS to keep these individuals from being able to create an Islamic state.

Source: Face the Nation 2014 interview: 2016 presidential hopefuls , Jul 13, 2014

Russia & Syria crises: price we pay for not leading world

America cannot sustain its current fiscal course. We cannot continue to borrow trillions from bankers in Beijing, Brazil and Tokyo. The downgrading of our credit for the first time two years ago should not have surprised anyone. Our debt has soared by trillions in the last 5 years.

How can the greatest nation on earth continue to spend its way to astounding debt without the bill ever coming due? How can we explode federal and state budgets with unreformed entitlement programs without the bill ever coming due?

How can we appease a Syrian tyrant, and embolden his Russian ally, without the bill ever coming due? There is a price to be paid for policies that destroy our economy and embolden our foreign enemies.

And I am here today to say we don't have to accept recent history. We just have to change the presidency. It is not too late for America to lead in the world. But it starts by leading at home. And it starts by returning to the founding principles of our democracy found in the Constitution.

Source: Speech at 2014 CPAC convention , Mar 8, 2014

Mitt Romney's foreign policy stances compared to Perry's

Do Perry and Romney agree on a hard line against China? (Yes, but by different methods). How do Romney and Perry differ on Guantanamo prison? (They don't; their stances are essentially identical). We cite details from Romney's books and speeches, and Perry's, so you can compare them, side-by-side, on issues like these:

Romney vs. Perry on International Issues

Source: Paperback: Perry vs. Romney On The Issues , Jan 1, 2012

End aid to Pakistan; money only goes to allies

Q: Gov. Perry has said that Pakistan should no longer receive US aid because they've shown they're not an ally?

BACHMANN: There are al-Qaeda training grounds there. At the same time, they do share intelligence data with us regarding Al Qaida.

PERRY: The bottom line is that they've showed us time after time that they can't be trusted. And until Pakistan clearly shows that they have America's best interests in mind, I would not send them one penny, period. I think it is important for us to send the message to those across the world that, if you are not going to be an ally of the US, do not expect a dime of our citizens' money to be coming into your country. That is the way we change foreign policy. Now, if we want to engage these countries with our abilities and our companies that go in, rather than just writing a blank check to them, then we can have that conversation. But to write a check to countries that are clearly not representing American interests is nonsensical.

Source: 2011 CNN National Security GOP primary debate , Nov 22, 2011

FactCheck: Pakistan is our ally, according to Bush generals

Rick Perry said the US should not write a black check to Pakistan because they've shown they're not an ally. Michele Bachman responded that Perry was "naive"; that the US gets plenty from our alliance with Pakistan. Who's right?

A 2008 paper published by the Council on Foreign Relations, entitled "US-Pakistan Military Cooperation" was clear, calling Pakistan "one of America's most important military alliances." The CFR paper states that our relationship is often strained, such as by Pakistan's detonation of a nuclear weapon in 1998; but Pakistan has been our ally since 1947, and a strong military ally since 9/11. One of Pres. Bush's commanders, Lt. Gen. Carter Ham, called Pakistan "a great partner so far in the war on terror"; another, Adm. Mike Mullen, said "Pakistan and the United States remain steadfast allies, and Pakistan's military is fighting bravely against terrorism."

Clearly Rep. Bachmann was 100% correct and Gov. Perry was 100% mistaken.

Source: OnTheIssues FactCheck on 2011 CNN National Security debate , Nov 22, 2011

China will end up on the ash heap of history, like USSR

There are some people who have made the statement that the 21st century is going to be the century of China and that, you know, we've had our time in the sunshine. I don't believe that. I don't believe that at all. As a matter of fact, you think back to the 1980s and we faced a similar type of a situation with Russia . And Ronald Reagan said that Russia would end up on the ash heap of history. And he was right. I happen to think that the communist Chinese government will end up on the ash heap of history if they do not change their virtues. It is important for a country to have virtues, virtues of honest.
Source: 2011 debate in South Carolina on Foreign Policy , Nov 12, 2011

F-16s to India; they are our allies, not Pakistan

Q: If you were president, and you go a call at 3AM telling you that Pakistan had lost control of its nuclear weapons, at the hands of the Taliban, what would be your first move?

PERRY: Well obviously, before you ever get to that point you have to build a relationship in that region. That's one of the things that this administration has not done. Yesterday, we found out that Haqqani--the terrorist group directly associated with the Pakistani country--has been involved with [terrorism. We need] to have a relationship with India, to make sure that India knows that they are an ally of the US. For instance, when we had the opportunity to sell India the upgraded F-16's, we chose not to do that. We did the same with Taiwan. The point is, our allies need to understand clearly that we are their friends, we will be standing by there with them. Today, we don't have those allies in that region that can assist us if that situation that you talked about were to become a reality.

Source: 2011 GOP Google debate in Orlando FL , Sep 22, 2011

America shouldn't be in the business of adventurism

Q: You recently said, "I do not believe that America should fall subject to a foreign policy of military adventurism." Do you think Pres. Bush was too quick to launch military intervention without thinking through the risks?

PERRY: I was making a comment about a philosophy; I don't think America needs to be in the business of adventurism.

Q: You were making a philosophical comment, but it's hard to understand philosophy without understanding specifics. Where are some of the places where we've seen military adventurism?

PERRY: That was a philosophical statement that Americans don't want to see their young men and women going into foreign countries without a clear reason that American interests are at stake. And they want to see not only a clear entrance; they want to see a clear exit strategy, as well. We should never put our young men and women's lives at risk when American interests are not clearly defined by the president, and that's one of the problems this president is doing today.

Source: 2011 GOP debate in Simi Valley CA at the Reagan Library , Sep 7, 2011

Iraq: combat terror on their turf, not ours

Many establishment Republicans in Washington want to blame their losses on the war in Iraq. I simply do not believe that is true. While Americans rightly have a watchful eye on the commitment of our courageous soldiers to the Middle East, and while many American still want to hear a clear articulation of our mission there, most Americans realize the need to combat terror on their turf, not ours.
Source: Fed Up!, by Gov. Rick Perry, p.146 , Nov 15, 2010

Divest state funds from companies doing business in Sudan

I believe the example we set in Texas can have international ramifications. I join in protesting the ethnic genocide occurring in Darfur by calling on the state of Texas to divest of companies doing business in Sudan.
Source: Texas 2007 State of the State address , Feb 6, 2007

Other governors on Foreign Policy: Rick Perry on other issues:
TX Gubernatorial:
Annise Parker
David Dewhurst
Greg Abbott
Julian Castro
Mike Rawlings
TX Senatorial:
David Alameel
Emily Sanchez
John Cornyn
Jon Roland
Steve Stockman
Ted Cruz

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Term-Limited or Retiring 2014:
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Page last updated: Jan 19, 2015