Robert Gates And Hillary To GOP Leaders: You’re Putting Our Security At Risk

Posted: Thursday, June 11, 2009 | Posted by Chico Brisbane | Labels: , , , , ,

Wow. Robert Gates and Hillary Clinton are now thrusting themselves into the raging fight over the White House’s request for Congressional cash for the International Monetary Fund, demanding in a letter that GOP leaders back the funding or put our security at risk.

I’ve obtained a copy of the letter, which was sent to GOP leaders John Boehner and Mitch McConnell and Dem leaders Nancy Pelosi and Harry Reid, though the obvious targets are the Republicans, who have opposed the IMF funding. Gates and Clinton significantly up the stakes, saying that the IMF funding would reduce the threat of terrorism.

The battle over the IMF funding is at the center of the big battle on Capitol Hill over the war spending bill. House Republicans are strongly opposed to including in the bill the IMF funding, which the White House wants to fulfill a pledge to foreign leaders to fund the IMF to help foreign economies weather the downturn.

In the letter, Gates, Clinton and a third signatory, National Security Adviser James Jones, say the IMF plays a key role in reducing the “security risks” the crisis “poses to our nation and the world.” The crisis, it says, risks destabilizing foreign economies, producing “unforeseeable reactions.”

It adds:Financial hardships and poverty breed desperation, which helps terrorist networks to attract new recruits with messages of hate, violence and intolerance. IMF financing reduces this threat by reducing economic instability in vulnerable states.

Ironically, Boehner and Eric Cantor have justified their opposition to the IMF funding on national security grounds, claiming it could help state sponsors of terror. But that case could be tougher to make, now that Gates, Clinton and Jones say funding the IMF is necessary to reduce the terror threat and enhance our security.