Subscribe to Breaking News emails

You have successfully subscribed to the Breaking News email.

Subscribe today to be the first to to know about breaking news and special reports.

Rand Paul: GOP Can't Confuse Military Might for US Strength

Image: U.S. Sen. Rand Paul speaks during the second day of the 5th annual Faith & Freedom Coalition's "Road to Majority" Policy Conference in Washington
U.S. Senator Rand Paul (R-KY) speaks during the second day of the 5th annual Faith & Freedom Coalition's "Road to Majority" Policy Conference in Washington, June 20, 2014. LARRY DOWNING / Reuters

Breaking News Emails

Get breaking news alerts and special reports. The news and stories that matter, delivered weekday mornings.

Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul told conservative activists Friday that hawkish Republicans have mistakenly concluded that U.S. military intervention is a sign of American strength.

“[Former President Reagan] believed in strength, but he also believed in peace,” Paul said at a Faith and Freedom Coalition conference. “Our reluctance to conflict should not be misjudged as a failure of will.”

Paul has long been in contrast with many in his party for largely isolationist views on foreign policy. He has been skeptical of using force in Iraq, including airstrikes, to combat militants who have overtaken part of the country.

Republicans like Sen. John McCain have argued the militants were emboldened by President Barack Obama’s decision to withdraw troops from Iraq in 2011, and many of the GOP speakers at the conservative conference have slammed Obama for policies they say have diminished America’s standing throughout the world.

“Reagan spoken often of peace through strength. I hear that some in our nation, some in our party have forgotten the first part of the sentence,” Paul said. “Peace should be our goal even as we build our strength. Some in my party have distorted the belief of peace through strength into the misguided belief that we should project strength through war.”

Breaking News Emails

Get breaking news alerts and special reports. The news and stories that matter, delivered weekday mornings.
MORE FROM news