Republicans call for aggressive foreign policy, rattle sabers on Iran

The leading Republican candidates refused to rule out military attacks against Iran to prevent it from developing a nuclear bomb, and slammed President Obama's response to the Green Revolution in the country in 2009 and 2010.

Mitt Romney and Newt Gingrich both called for tougher sanctions against Iran, pushing for regime change. They both said that keeping nuclear weapons out of Iranian hands would merit a military strike, either from Israel or or the U.S. military.

That's a stance Herman Cain has publicly taken in the past, although during Saturday's debate he focused on economic sanctions as a tool against the Iranian regime.

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Romney called Iran "President Obama’s greatest failure from a military standpoint," and that if "all else fails" the U.S. should take "military action."

Gingrich called for covert operations including assassination of Iran's nuclear scientists, and said that if all pressures on Iran don't work then a military strike should be carried out.


Rick Santorum, echoing former President George W. Bush's line on Iraq, said that the U.S. should work with Israel to coordinate a military strike "before the next explosion we hear in Iran is a nuclear one, and then the world changes."

The only strong dissenter on the stage, unsurprisingly, was Ron Paul, who blasted the other candidates' rhetoric. "I’m afraid what’s going on right now is similar to the war propaganda that went on with Iraq.

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