OH: Do you agree with Governor Fraser that military interventions abroad cannot be ruled out when national security of the US is at risk?
KG: I certainly agree with the Governor that military force cannot be used just wiliy-nilly…As the commander-in-chief,but there are so many means before military intervention that can be used to guarantee that security. And security in our day and age means so much than just guns and bullets. My belief is that our nation is not really secure unless we are able to educate our children, our nation is not really secure if we are not able to control the environmental destruction, and free ourselves from these fuel sources that not only pollute us but and hamper our foreign policy. I believe that we are not secure if one in five children goes to sleep hungry at night. So I think security is so much more than just military might.
Now, as a fellow veteran, I certainly appreciate his point of view that…ask anyone: people who have been in the military are probably the closest thing to true pacifists you’ll ever find, because we are the people who understand the actual personal cost of putting the military into harms way. I think that, as a military veteran myself, I was actually deployed in Iraq, when the Governor graduated from the Naval Academy in 2003. As a fellow veteran, I share that personal insight into what military service means, and what deploying into a war actually means, and certainly that will be in my mind when I have to make those decisions as a President, but I won’t hesitate to use military force when it’s necessary, but it certainly will not be my first choice.
OH: Do you share Joe’s opinion that your experience in the military gives you a better edge in handling foreign issues?
KG: Well I think, in my case, I am not only a military veteran, but I am also a serving Senator and I am on the Foreign Relations Committee in the Senate, so that definitely gives me a leg up as far as foreign relations goes. Massachusetts is a large State, and I suppose it has its fair amount of foreign policy—the Governor was recently in Afghanistan and India, and I commend him for that—but I think that more than my military service, that gives me a lot of insight into the use of the military, but that is a single facet of foreign policy, and I think that my current position as a member of the Foreign Relations Committee speaks more for my understanding of foreign US policy.
OH: In what respect would you differentiate yourself from Joe?
KG: Well, that’s a great question…Like I said, I definitely agree with the Governor that being a veteran, having military service does provide insight; absolutely, it’s an insight that you cannot have without actually haven’t served and been in harm’s way, and certainly when a Commander-in-Chief is also a veteran making the decision to send troops in, he or she will have a better understanding of what that actually means, how this does this affect the servicemen and their families at home and their communities at large and on and on. But as I said, my greatest asset as far foreign policy goes, comes from my work in the Senate…I have served on this Committee now for two terms; that is the definite strength that I believe I bring to this.
Also, as we have seen in Washington DC today, the Executive and the Legislative, they go back and forth a lot, there is a lot of bad blood. I believe that having experience in the Legislative branch, as I do—while I definitely respect the Governor’s executive experience in the State of Massachusetts—, I believe having that experience on the Hill is something that I can bring to bear to bridge that gap and make things actually get done, hopefully, in Washington.