The White House's demands last week that Turkey seal off part of its border with Syria, while allowing the United States' border to remain "completely porous" is the "height of hypocrisy," GOP presidential candidate Ben Carson said Tuesday.
"Terrorists can come here also," the retired pediatric neurosurgeon told Fox News' "Fox & Friends" program.
"I've been down there. I mean, I was astonished by how little protection there is and all of the drugs that are coming through."
Last week, The Wall Street Journal
reported that the White House wants Turkey to block a 60-mile part of the border to keep ISIS fighters from migrating in and out of the Syrian combat zone.
However, officials estimate that it would take up to 30,000 troops to guard the border, and Turkey itself has pointed out that Washington has not been able to seal the U.S./Mexico border, a statement that angered U.S. officials.
"If we were at war with Mexico, we'd close that border," a senior official responded to that line of argument.
But Carson, agreeing that it would be good to seal the Turkey/Syria border, still called for the White House to do the same with Mexico.
"For us to sit there and proclaim sanctimoniously that you should close your border while we haven't done that to protect the American people seems to me the height of hypocrisy," he told the program.
Also on the program, Carson, who visited Syrian refugee camps in Jordan over the weekend, said his visit was "quite enlightening."
"We need to understand this is a cauldron that's going to erupt and cause irreparable damage there and throughout the world," said Carson. "We have a responsibility as the pinnacle nation in the world. When you see something about to create havoc to do something about it, not just to sit there and leave the responsibilities for somebody else."
At the same time, though, that doesn't mean bringing Syrian refugees to the United States, because they don't want to leave their own homeland.
"They want to go back to Syria," said Carson. "That's their goal, to be repatriated."
The Obama administration's call to bring 25,000 of the refugees to the United States, meanwhile, is just a "feel good" solution.
And in his travels, Carson said he observed more children and widows, but there were also "a substantial" number of young men of fighting age, and he hopes that more of them would be involved in a battle for their own nation.
"But I think that's beside the point," he said. "The point is that there are solutions, there are humanitarian solutions that don't involve exposing the American people to danger and that actually work and not Band-Aids to make people feel good."
Sandy Fitzgerald ✉
Sandy Fitzgerald has more than three decades in journalism and serves as a general assignment writer for Newsmax covering news, media, and politics.
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