CBS announced Condoleezza Rice has joined the network as a contributor, and the former Secretary of State shared her thoughts on Inauguration Day and how President Obama should handle the Middle East in his second term.
“What a wonderful celebration this is of our democracy, the peaceful transition of power,” said Rice. “When you’ve traveled around the world, not every country can take this moment for granted.”
While Obama will speak to everyone today, Rice was asked what he needs to say to Republicans. “I would hope the president would use this opportunity to say, I’ve won the election, but this is now, we’re all Americans to move forward together. Now it’s a question of reuniting the country around some big issues.”
Rice said Obama’s biggest foreign policy challenge is in the Middle East, where al-Qaida is spreading into other parts of the world. Other issues she noted needed attention were the Arab Spring, where there was still hope for democracy and tolerance, returning to address the Palestinian problem, and Iran.
“And always Iran,” Rice said. “As a shadow over the chaos in the Middle East, Iran’s revolutionary zeal and tendency to make trouble.”
Rice suggested Obama’s speech to the American people should say, “that we have to stay engaged, we don’t have an option to leave the stage. American leadership is needed in this world.”
See Sec. Rice’s comments here:
Bob Woodward: Obama’s ‘sticking his finger in their eye’
Rove: ‘Confrontational’ Obama shows main goal to win House in 2014
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