Glenn Greenwald interviews Tulsi Gabbard


Glenn Greenwald interviews 2020 Presidential Candidate Tulsi Gabbard

Ever since Tulsi Gabbard was first elected to Congress in 2012, she has been assertively independent, heterodox, unpredictable, and polarizing. Viewed at first as a loyal Democrat and guaranteed future star by party leaders — due to her status as an Iraq War veteran, a telegenic and dynamic young woman, and the first Hindu and Samoan-American elected to Congress — she instead become a thorn in the side, and frequent critic, of those same leaders.

Gabbard’s transformation from cherished party asset to party critic and outcast was rapid, and was due almost entirely to her insistence on following her own belief system and evolving ideology, rather than party dogma and the longstanding rules for Washington advancement.

In 2012, Rachel Maddow, upon announcing Gabbard’s victory, instructed her audience to learn Gabbard’s name because, the MSNBC host gushed, “She is on the fast track to being very famous someday.” In 2015, Maddow invited Gabbard on her show to herald her as one of the leaders of what Maddow touted as an urgently needed, new bipartisan congressional caucus composed of military veterans in the war on terror.

But by mid-2016, Gabbard committed the ultimate party heresy: She very publicly resigned from her position as Democratic National Committee vice chair at the peak of the primary battle to endorse Sen. Bernie Sanders after months of internally accusing DNC Chair Debbie Wasserman Schultz of corruptly violating the DNC’s duty of neutrality by favoring Hillary Clinton.

Her accusation was later vindicated through emails published by WikiLeaks, Wasserman Schultz’s resignation, Sen. Elizabeth Warren’s own “rigging” accusation, and current DNC Chair Donna Brazile’s book, which caused Gabbard to publicly repeat her allegations of the DNC’s “unethical rigging” of the primary in favor of Clinton.

Gabbard compiled a record on domestic policy questions that places her squarely within the left populist wing of the party — from advocating Medicare for All, a national $15 an hour minimum wage, various free college programs, and even participating in anti-pipeline Standing Rock protests in North Dakota.

Yet her aggressive criticisms of the pieties of the bipartisan foreign policy community — particularly her harsh criticism of regime change operations from Iraq and Libya, to Syria and Venezuela, and her warnings about escalating tensions with Russia and China and the dangers of a “new Cold War” — further cemented her status as party outsider and heretic from the perspective of Washington Democratic insiders.

I sat down with Gabbard in Washington late last week to discuss a wide range of issues, including the reasons she is running for president, her views on President Donald Trump’s electoral appeal and what is necessary to defeat it, the rise of right-wing populism internationally, the Trump-Russia investigation,  criticisms she received regarding her views of Islam and certain repressive leaders, and her unique foreign policy viewpoints.

This interview is intended to be the first in a series of in-depth interviews with influential and interesting U.S. political figures, including but not limited to 2020 presidential candidates,  designed to enable deeper examinations than the standard cable or network news format permits.

It is designed to be 45 minutes to an hour, though a last-minute call requiring Gabbard to leave for National Guard duty meant we had 30 minutes for the discussion, which nonetheless ended up quite wide-ranging and substantive.


4 thoughts on “Glenn Greenwald interviews Tulsi Gabbard

  1. What a major disappointment to hear Tulsi Gabbard admitting her ignorance of the 9/11 false flag, pushing the whitewash 9/11 Commission narrative and talking here about Al Qaeda being the ones who attacked on September 11, 2001. Because of that unbelievably naive stance on 9/11,which surely must be intentional as anyone with half a brain knows 9/11 was a false flag, it’s hard to conclude otherwise but that Ms. Gabbard is another Obama-like puppet.


  2. Do you think Tulsi Gabbard is sincere in her take on 9/11?

    What I mean is I don’t claim to know exactly what happened but I do believe there is more to the story. As Seymour Hersch says here, the Saudi monarchy is involved somehow, so we don’t have closure, there’s no ending to the 9/11 story.

    However, many reasonable people believe otherwise. This belief is sincere. Maybe Israel. Maybe PNAC. Maybe Dubya. Maybe there are multiple players responsible, as in legit conspiracy false flag territory. I’m not convinced of anything specific, but I respect people who are.

    I feel similarly about the JFK assassination. The official story doesn’t add up; however, I don’t claim to know whodunnit. Maybe Mafia. Maybe Cuba. Maybe CIA, FBI, and even LBJ. Some combination of these and/or other actors gets us a conspiracy.

    So what to make of Gabbard? Do you think she believes what she is saying, that she’s sincere?

    One can be sincere and be wrong. Happens all the time, especially when people talk about our political beliefs. Who has access to The Truth on 9/11 and JFK? Would every member of Congress?

    I am skeptical of what we the people have been told, yet it seems more than I am willing to sign off on to believe Dubya orchestrated 9/11.

    I realize people like Trump and Dubya are incompetent and narcissistic, God’s chosen idiots, yet I just can’t believe even Dubya or Trump is evil enough to blow up the towers, the Pentagon, and one of those planes was headed to the White House itself, wasn’t it?


  3. O Society,

    The only other explanation imaginable for Tulsi Gabbard’s choice of presenting to the public a naive acceptance of the whitewash 9/11 Commission Report – while knowing full well it was in reality a false flag – is her wishing to avoid assassination and remain alive until sworn in as president. Perhaps that’s the case and possibly a good choice if true, because no matter her potential and how courageous Ms. Gabbard is with respect to ending illegal wars, she can’t do a damn thing if dead.

    Lawyers’ Committee for 9/11 Inquiry have a bullet-proof legal case and are more-than-ready to begin their legal work, however the attorneys at the Southern District of New York are practicing historic foot dragging and stonewalling, endlessly stalling the start of the Special 9/11 Grand Jury process.

    Liked by 1 person

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