The former president of the United States Barack Obama (2008-2016) has defended in an interview the orders he gave to kill people as “part of his job” and has mentioned in particular the Operation to kill Al Qaeda leader Usama bin Laden, and has legitimized invasions like the one in Afghanistan.
“It was not a surprise that part of my job involved ordering people to be killed,” Obama says in the first part of his memoirs, which he has just presented and which is entitled “A Promised Land.”
“I do not regret, for example, having ordered the operation that resulted in the death of Usama bin Laden because he was planning the murder of innocent people, something he had done before,” Obama explained in an interview promoting the book. granted to the Cadena Ser.
The former US president has thus referred to “necessary” wars, such as the one in Afghanistan or unnecessary, such as the one in Iraq. “I think going to Afghanistan and ending the Taliban and Al Qaeda after 9/11 was necessary. Even necessary wars involve very terrible things and that is something that weighs heavily on my conscience. And it has to be like that ”, he explained.
«Others who were further to the left, who were more progressive, said that what had to be done was to dismantle the military-industrial complex and I told them that this would happen in the world that I would like to have, in which there would be no need to military operations of this type, “he argued. “The truth is that if your son is on a plane and suffers an attack and you discover that your government could have prevented that from happening, whatever your ideology, what you want is for that government to protect your son,” he added.
Regarding the success among young people of politicians clearly to the left of Obama such as Bernie Sanders or Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, the former president has argued that during his term he managed to “advance a certain amount of expectations (…) for new ones to arrive. politicians, raise your expectations even higher and so let us progress. ‘
With the new president of the United States, Joe Biden, “we are going to see those kinds of expectations again, but we still have to govern.” “You have to accept the progress that you can achieve at a specific moment in history,” he added.
Regarding his successor in office, Donald Trump, he has warned that “we would make a mistake if we thought that Donald Trump is unique. There is (Viktor) Orbán in Hungary, (Recep Tayyip) Erdogan in Turkey, (Rodrigo) Duterte in the Philippines, (Vladimir) Putin in Russia, … and the right-wing parties re-emerging throughout Europe.
«Inequality (…), the market forces, which are becoming more and more powerful, the governments unable in many cases to regulate them. All this has contributed to anxiety and fear, to nationalism, ”he argued. “Invoking nationalism, tribe, ethnicity, religion, chauvinism, a strong man policy (…) generates an attraction when people are afraid,” he said.
Obama has also referred to one of the flagships of his two terms, health reform, and mentioned the memory of his mother, sick with cancer. “The fact that I saw my mother with cancer, worrying about whether or not she could pay the bills, made me more aware of the fear and insecurity that people without health coverage feel. The fact of coming from a modest family. I was not born rich, “he recalled.