Former President Jimmy Carter criticized President Barack Obama and former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton for their lack of involvement in Middle East peace negotiations in a Time magazine interview published Thursday.
“[W]hen Secretary Clinton was secretary of state, she took very little action to bring about peace,” Carter said. “It was only John Kerry’s coming into office that reinitiated all these very important and crucial issues.”
The former Democratic president expressed “great admiration” for Secretary of State John Kerry, applauding him for his active role in pursuing peace in the Middle East.
“He has had a very difficult time operating pretty much on his own,” Carter said. “I know from experience that the best way to have the United States be a mediator is for the president himself to be deeply involved.”
Expanding on earlier remarks in which he called the U.S. “the No. 1 warmonger on earth,” Carter emphasized the importance of pursuing diplomatic efforts in order to avoid armed conflict.
"You can look at the record: ever since the United Nations was formed after the second World War, the United States has almost constantly been at war somewhere," Carter said. "There are about 30 countries where we have initiated armed conflict."
Clinton, widely seen as the 2016 Democratic presidential front-runner, has strayed from the Obama administration’s foreign policy platform recently, offering a more hawkish approach on issues including Iran and Russia.
In March, Clinton hinted at possible military invention in Iran if a comprehensive nuclear agreement was not reached through diplomatic efforts.
"Let's be clear," Clinton said. "Every option does remain on the table."