Trump meets Democrat Tulsi, says  discussed Syria and terrorism

She may be under consideration for defence or foreign policy position in President-elect’s govt, according to media reports

New York : The first Hindu elected to Congress, Tulsi Gabbard, crossed her Democratic party line to meet Republican-elect Donald Trump on Monday to discuss Syria, terrorism and national security matters and warn of the risk of a nuclear confrontation with Russia amid speculation that he may be checking out the war veteran for a position in his administration, according to IANS.

On economic and social issues Gabbard belongs to the leftist wing of the Democratic Party, but she is closer to Trump’s policies on fighting terror while avoiding foreign interventions and this makes her a prime candidate for the president-elect’s efforts to reach out to his opposition.

Media reports said she may be under consideration for defence or foreign policy position in Trump’s government. A major in the Army National Guard, Gabbard has served two tours of duty in Iraq.

“I saw firsthand the cost of war, and the lives lost due to the interventionist warmongering policies our country has pursued for far too long,” she said after the meeting with Trump who has criticised United States military entanglements abroad.

During this month’s election, Republican Party leadership had helped Gabbard by withdrawing support for their own party’s candidate Angela Kaaihue who made a bigoted attack on Gabbard with anti-Hindu vitriol calling her a “pathetic Hindu 1,000 gods leader.”

Trump’s outreach to Gabbard illustrates the complexity of United States politics, where Trump is a dove when it comes to foreign interventions while extremely tough on Islamic terrorism, whereas his Democratic Party rival Hillary Clinton is a hawk advocating interventions abroad and a confrontation with Russia.

Gabbard said she told Trump about her concerns with enforcing a no-fly zone over Syria that Clinton, along with Democratic and Republican hawks, advocates to counter Bashar al-Assad and Russia.

“It would lead to more death and suffering, exacerbate the refugee crisis, strengthen ISIS (Islamic State) and al-Qaeda, and bring us into a direct conflict with Russia which could result in a nuclear war,” she said.

If the US were to enforce a no-fly zone it could be drawn into a direct confrontation with Russia, which conducts bombing raids over areas controlled by Islamic State terrorists.

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