Hillary Clinton: We need intelligence surge to defeat terror

Presumptive Democratic presidential nominee weighs in on 'The O'Reilly Factor'


This is a RUSH transcript from "The O'Reilly Factor," July 14, 2016. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.
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So, Madam Secretary, it is the consensus of the experts here on the panel at The Factor that critical mass has been reached, and now concrete things have to be taken in a world war situation, mobilization of NATO, Congress declaring war. Would you oppose any of that?

HILLARY CLINTON (D), PRESUMPTIVE PRESIDENTIAL NOMINEE (on the phone): Well, Bill, first of all, I think it's important to stress that our alliance with France is so strong, and it's terrible that France has faced too much tragedy and violence, and we need to stand strongly with them because events like this remind us how vital it is in every way not to abandon them. We need to strengthen our alliances, and I include NATO in that. We've got to do more to understand that this is a war against these terrorist groups, the radical jihadist groups. It's a different kind of war. We need to be smart about how we wage it, but we have to be determined that we're going to win it.

O'REILLY: Absolutely.

CLINTON: That's going to require working with other people. I think --

O'REILLY: Now, as you know, after the Paris attack, President Hollande of France wanted to invoke Article 5 of the NATO charter, which would declare war on the ISIS fanatics and perhaps other jihadists. Now I think that is going to come back again. Would you support that?

CLINTON: Well, I have long called for NATO to be modernized, to take on the threat that terrorism poses in Europe and Middle East and even in our own country. So I would be very interested in working to determine how best to do that. One of my priorities is to launch an intelligence surge. We still do not have enough intelligence cooperation between our agencies and those in other countries, including in Europe, and we need to have a focal point --

O'REILLY: Why is that? I didn't know that. Why is that happening? Why don't we have the intelligence?

CLINTON: Well, I'll tell you in part because there has been a reluctance on the part of some of our friends in Europe to be as forthcoming in sharing information. For example, like airline passenger lists. I negotiated very hard with the Europeans to get much more information. We've gotten some. I've give them that. But we don't yet have enough. In fact, in Europe, one of their problems has been -- and they'd better address this, and it affects us too.

They don't share enough information even across their borders. So I think that we need strong, tough diplomacy starting with our friends to do on a bilateral basis with individual countries, collectively with the EU, with NATO and others, to do everything we need to be prepared to work with each other to ferret out these terrorists and to prevent future attacks.

O'REILLY: Now, the Democratic Party has been opposed to using ground troops to go into Raqqa and confront the ISIS terrorists. I think that has to happen. Most military experts agree with me. Where do you stand on that?

CLINTON: Well, Bill, I think we should look at the progress we are making against ISIS. It is a dream of ISIS to pull American ground troops --

O'REILLY: NATO forces it would be, not just American. NATO forces.

CLINTON: Well, but anytime we have NATO, America has to lead. We were very grateful when our NATO allies came with us into Afghanistan and into other places. But let's not kid ourselves. America leads. And what we're seeing, because of American troops, we have about 5,000 in Iraq. We have Special Forces operating in both Iraq and Syria. We have been able to get the Iraqis, the Kurds, and others to do a much better job of fighting. In fact, a lot of experts believe that as we take territory back, we are going to be poised for a very important attack on Mosul. As we take territory back from ISIS forces, they will try to engage in other terrorist attacks - -

O'REILLY: Yes. That's what they're doing now, sure.

CLINTON: That's what they're doing now, so we've got to go after their headquarters. We have to keep pushing them into a smaller and smaller territory so that we can take out their leadership, take out their infrastructure, and do as much as possible to end --

O'REILLY: But don't you think the world at this point -- I think two things have to happen. Number one, President Obama has to call a summit meeting of all the western countries, and ISIS has to be the focal point, and we all have to join together. And number two, we have to make a statement. And the statement would be, we know they're in Raqqa. We know this is their headquarters, and that headquarters is 35 miles away from the Turkish border, a NATO alley. And we're going to come in, and that's not going to be their headquarters anymore. That's what I would do.

CLINTON: Well, look, that -- you know, that is, in my view, not the most effective way. What is happening now is we are taking territory back in Iraq. We are squeezing them with inconsistent air attacks. We have killed a number of their leaders. Assuming we are successful and American military leadership is in the hunt on this in Mosul, we are pushing the Turks -- they have moved far more than they had. And, in fact, probably the attack at the Istanbul Airport was because the Turks are really cracking down.

We are putting together a much more effective coalition. I would intensify those efforts. I have no problem with having a summit. I would include, however, not only NATO allies. We've got great allies in the region who are holding the lines for us, places like Jordan, like Israel. Others who are really on the front lines themselves.

O'REILLY: Sure. I mean I think everybody, every civilized --

CLINTON: When I was secretary -- when I was secretary, Bill, I started the first ever international group to deal with global terrorism and to bring everybody to the table. Places that we know money and fighters come out of, and to get them to make more commitments to deal with what they, themselves, have not stopped within their borders.

O'REILLY: Right.

CLINTON: And I think we've got to elevate this, make it a very high priority, and I would.

O'REILLY: Madam Secretary, I appreciate your time tonight. Thank you very much for appearing on The Factor. I hope to see you in person soon. Thanks again.

CLINTON: I would look forward to that. Thanks, Bill. Take care. Bye- bye.

O'REILLY: All right. So, we have about two minutes and five seconds to be with you, and then we'll turn it over to The Kelly File. I have some last comments. I was very, very happy to have both Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton on this program. It's an important night. There are a lot of things happening that affect all of our lives. But one of the things that we didn't talk about today is how terrorism has changed everybody. A paranoia that now grows, more in Europe than in America. But believe me, they are trying -- they being the ISIS fanatics and the jihadists, they are trying to hit us here.

And we go to the airport, everything's changed. All right? We go on to major cities, there are cops everywhere. We go to a ball game, you got winded down. All right? So the terrorists really have put the world in a place where the world never should have been. And the reason that they're allowed to get away with it is that the world is not together. The world is not together, all right? You just heard Secretary Clinton say still, still, after all of this, the European Intelligence Agencies don't fully cooperate with America. Okay? This is insane. This is crazy stuff, all right?

And we need strong leadership. Whether you support Donald Trump or Hillary Clinton, the folks are going to make that call, and this is extremely important on many, many different levels in this country because this country is now on the defensive. We're on the defensive. We're on the defensive socially. We're on the defensive in the terror war. And we're even on the defensive because we're fighting each other, black and white. We're fighting each other.

We're all on defense, and that's not -- if you study American history, that's not where this nation has traditionally been. So now we have to step up, and we have to tell the world we're going to take care of these ISIS people. They're going, all right? And develop a smart plan in order to make that happen.

Thank you very much for watching The Factor tonight. I'm Bill O'Reilly. As you all know, we're looking out for you. We'll see you on Monday.

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