On Aug. 17, 2014 — eight months before she declared her candidacy for president — Clinton sent a detailed strategy for combating the Islamic State, which she referred to as ISIL, in an email to John Podesta, then a White House counselor and now her campaign chairman.
Along with a military campaign to roll back the terror group in Iraq, the Clinton email talks about confronting the Saudis and the Qataris, both key U.S. allies, over what she refers to as governmental backing of ISIL.
The Clinton email states: “We need to use our diplomatic and more traditional intelligence assets to bring pressure on the governments of Qatar and Saudi Arabia, which are providing clandestine financial and logistic support to ISIL and other radical Sunni groups in the region.”
As a basis for the assertions, Clinton in the email cites “Western intelligence, U.S. intelligence and sources in the region.”
In a realpolitik view, however, we can’t abandon our decades-old alliance with the Saudis. With Russia asserting its power and influence through its proxies in Iran and Syria, the U.S. needs its alliance with Saudi and the Gulf states to have any influence in the Middle East – a crucial geopolitical fulcrum. So while Clinton is undoubtedly stating a truth, the real question is what are you going to do about it?