DE PERE, WI -- Wisconsin Congressman Paul Ryan called the attacks in the Middle East in the last 24 hours that resulted in four Americans killed “outrageous” and that a Mitt Romney administration would follow a “peace through strength” doctrine.
“The attacks on our diplomatic missions in Egypt and Libya and the loss of four American lives including our Ambassador J. Christopher Stevens-- this is outrageous,” Ryan said inside an ice rink outside of Green Bay. “Our hearts are heavy and our thoughts and prayers are with the victims and their families, and I would just like to ask at this moment that we join together in a moment of silence in memory of them.”
Following the moment of silence, Ryan continued: “This is a time for healing. It is a time for resolve. And in the face of such a tragedy, we are reminded that the world needs American leadership. And the best guarantee of peace is American strength.”
The U.S. consulate in Benghazi, Libya, was attacked Tuesday -- September 11th -- killing the American ambassador and three other diplomats. There were also protests outside the U.S. embassy in Cairo, Egypt.
The Romney campaign released a statement late Tuesday night, which the former Massachusetts governor told reporters this morning he stands by: “It's disgraceful that the Obama administration's first response was not to condemn attacks on our diplomatic missions, but to sympathize with those who waged the attacks.”
With less than two months before the Nov. 6th election, foreign policy is back in the spotlight.
In Ryan’s first solo town-hall style event since being chosen as Romney’s running mate, the very first question came from a bronze-star recipient on how national security would be handled under a new administration.
“It is very important that a president speak with a singular voice representing our principles and our values," Ryan said. "We don't want people around the world wondering what our values are. Peace through strength works, and a Romney administration will embrace the peace-through-strength doctrine.”
For nearly 40 minutes, Ryan fielded questions from fellow Wisconsinites on a variety of topics, but the very final question circled back to foreign policy. He began talking about the problems of White House “leaks” after he was asked about Shakil Afridi, the Pakistani doctor who aided the CIA in the Bin laden effort and who was throw in jail for treason by Pakistan.
“Let me be careful with my words, but be really clear," Ryan said. "These leaks on national security coming from the White House undermine the men and women who put risks on their lives for us. How are we going to get people to help us in the war on terror if this is how we treat our allies in the war on terror? These leaks are not helpful.”