Donald Trump has upped his attacks on Hillary Clinton for her role in advocating for US intervention in Libya, calling her "trigger-happy" and "unstable" in recent weeks.
A BuzzFeed News review of even more Trump appearances on TV in 2011 reveals more footage of Trump pushing for the Libyan intervention he now attacks, and, in a separate incident, Trump calling for the US to protect Iranian protesters.
"Well, it’s a little bit late," Trump said on On the Record in late March of 2011. "His whole thing is a little late. He takes so long to make decisions and he might have been better off making no decision or going in early because so many people have been killed in Libya. It’s unbelievable. It’s a carnage. So I just don’t think he knows what he’s doing, Greta"
Trump made similar comments on Fox and Friends days earlier, saying Obama should have moved earlier in taking action against Libyan President Muammar al-Qaddafi. Later in his On the Record appearance, Trump proposed US operations to "take the oil" in Libya and "clean up everything."
"You know my attitude on that," said Trump. "You and I have discussed it at great length. I would go in and take the oil. I would just take the oil. We don’t know who the rebels are, we hear they come in from Iran, we hear they’re influenced by Iran, or Al Qaeda, and frankly, I would go in and take the oil, and stop this baby stuff. We’re a bunch of babies. We have wars and we leave. We go in, we have wars, we lose lives, we lose money, and we leave. I would go in and take the oil and I’d clean up everything.”
Trump blamed Obama for being "weak and ineffective" in his response to the crisis in Libya.
In another clip a month earlier, on the same show, Trump proposed the US make it known it would protect Iranians protesting the country's president. If Iran acted, he said, the US should go after the government.
"They handle it tougher," Trump said. "People go in the streets and they start shooting right away. I think with Iran we have a major problem. I think maybe this is a great time. If they protest, we should maybe try and protect the protesters. And by doing that, that means harsh measures. We let him know, you are going to hurt those protesters, we are going to come after you. That way maybe they can actually protest."
Later that same year, in a YouTube video uploaded by Trump in October, Trump criticized Obama for not backing the 2009 Iranian protests. "Believe me, that country would’ve been turned over so fast, instead he abandoned those people,” Trump said in the video.
It's unclear when Trump turned on the Libyan intervention, but as late as December of 2011, he said the US should have intervened under a deal with Libyan rebels that gave the American government the right to half of Libya's oil wealth.
"If Obama said we will help you, we want 50% of your oil, and we will help you, I don't mean for one year, I mean we want 50% of your oil, they would have said you have a deal, absolutely you have a deal, done, over," Trump said. "Sign right here—boom, boom, boom—and if we help, 50%.
He continued, "OK. Now, we then send the most sophisticated missiles ever made, and wherever you have Qaddafi's people — boom, boom, boom — and then the rebels brilliantly walk in and take over the town, take over the city, they kept doing it. OK. So, after doing that to about 30 cities, the rebels won the war. OK, they won. The rebels. Whoever the rebels are. I think, I hear a lot of them come from Iran, by the way."
Andrew Kaczynski is a political reporter for BuzzFeed News and is based in New York.
Contact Andrew Kaczynski at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Christopher Massie is a political reporter for BuzzFeed News and is based in New York.
Contact Christopher Massie at Christopher.Massie@buzzfeed.com.
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