Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton told Business Insider that Americans have a right to be “worried” about ISIS. But she added they shouldn’t “panic” about the terror organisation in the aftermath of the recent horrific Brussels terror attacks.
ISIS claimed responsibility for last week’s attacks, which included multiple suicide bombings at a metro station and airport, killing 32 and injuring hundreds more.
“I think Americans have every reason to be worried about ISIS and the network of terrorist groups,” she told Henry Blodget, Business Insider’s CEO and editor-in-chief, in a Thursday interview.
“They have proven to be sophisticated and effective in wreaking violence and murder in many parts of the world,” she added.
Clinton also mentioned December’s attacks in San Bernardino, California, where police have said 14 people were killed by a husband and wife, Syed Rizwan Farook and Tashfeen Malik. Law-enforcement officials have said Malik pledged allegiance to ISIS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi on her Facebook page prior to the attacks.
But, Clinton added, she doesn’t think the American people should “panic” about the group.
“And I don’t think we should advocate for ideas and plans that will make things worse,” she said. “I think it was said just this week that the way Donald Trump talks about terrorism and his very insulting language towards Muslims is making him the ‘recruiting sergeant’ for ISIS.”
“So you do have to walk a fine line here,” she added.
One of Trump’s most prominent claims on the campaign trail was his call for a temporary banning of Muslim tourists and immigrants from entering the US “until our country’s representatives can figure out what the hell is going on” following the San Bernardino attacks in December.
“I will take a backseat to no one in keeping America safe,” Clinton said in response to the Republican frontrunner. “I have a very clear set of proposals about how we defeat ISIS. And I think it’s important that we do it in concert with other nations in Europe, the Middle East, elsewhere if necessary. And that means you’ve got to work with people. You don’t insult them. You don’t insult their religion.”
“And it means we have to see our entire country, all of the people in it, as part of our first line of defence,” she added.
The Democratic frontrunner also called out Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas, another GOP presidential hopeful, for suggesting after the Brussels attacks that local law enforcement needs to increase their patrolling of heavily Muslim neighbourhoods in the US to avoid future attacks.
Watch Clinton’s comments below:
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