During our interview, I could not help asking Slaughter about U.S. policy in the Middle East. She has been a vocal advocate of intervention in Libya to bolster those trying to oust Col. Muammar al-Qaddafi. As she put it in our interview, “Our goal across the Middle East has to be to stand for peaceful change, the right of citizens to demand basic services from their governments.” However, she added that the U.S. role should be to support citizens who are battling oppressive regimes, not to take on the fight itself. “We have to help people as we can,” she said, “but it’s their fight. It’s the Libyans who have to ultimately change their government.” Turning to Syria, Slaughter called the situation there “heartbreaking” and said, “it looks like this government might get away with the same kind of brutality that we saw 20 years ago.” Nonetheless, she argued that the United States is not in a position to use force.
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