Clinton says US should make friends, not foes

9th August 2005, Comments 0 comments

PARIS, Aug 9 (AFP) - The United States needs a strategy that "creates more partners and fewer terrorists," former US president Bill Clinton said in an interview with the French newspaper Le Monde published Tuesday.

PARIS, Aug 9 (AFP) - The United States needs a strategy that "creates more partners and fewer terrorists," former US president Bill Clinton said in an interview with the French newspaper Le Monde published Tuesday.

"We can't put the whole world behind walls. We can't kill all our enemies. ... The fate of Americans is closely entwined with that of other peoples," he said in comments reported in French.

The image of the United States, he said, will improve only when it shows itself to be a "disinterested" power, one that "wants to build a world with others, while understanding their problems," such as when it rushed to help tsunami-hit Indonesia.

The former US leader, who was in the White House from January 1993 to January 2001, had words of advice for his successor George W Bush in confronting the threat of radical Islam.

His country needs "a strategy which consists of destroying the legitimacy of an ideology which falsely relies on religion to create and maintain conflicts," he said.

"Religion must become a means to resolving conflicts."

Clinton cited terrorism, poverty, global warming and issues of good governance in developing countries as the four main problems on the planet -- problems he said he was trying to tackle through his Clinton Global Initiative.

Solutions existed, he said. If richer countries dedicated 0.5 to 1.0 percent of their gross domestic product to poorer nations and ensured that despots did not embezzle the money, "poverty could disappear within one or two decades," he said.

Clinton said his Initiative would be holding its first gathering of world leaders and business magnates in New York in September at the same time as a UN General Assembly taking place in the city.

Copyright AFP

Subject: French news, terrorism, Bill Clinton, US policy, Clinton Global Initiative

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