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‘What is Aleppo?’ Asks US Libertarian Party Candidate Gary Johnson

Johnson has pledged to cut spending, stick to conservative fiscal policies and legalize marijuana

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Libertarian presidential candidate Gary Johnson speaks at a campaign rally in Boston, Massachusetts, Aug. 27, 2016. VOA
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  • In the 2012 presidential election, Johnson set a record for most votes won by a Libertarian candidate
  • By framing an ignominious lapse presidential candidate from Libertarian Party Garry Johnson attracted people’s attention
  • The Libertarian agenda promotes civil liberties and a small-government agenda

Sept 11, 2016: On Thursday during an interview with MSNBC Garry Johnson Libertarian Party presidential candidate when being asked that, ‘if you were elected, what would you do regarding “Aleppo” condition’?

Then there it came an astonishing answer, – Aleppo???

Surprisingly MSNBC interviewer said, are you kidding?

‘’No’’ Johnson replied.

‘’Aleppo is in Syria…. It’s the epic center of the refugee crisis, the MSNBC interviewer said.

Ok got it got it, Jonson said.

The incident also followed its course to the public meeting on Wednesday night in which Democratic Candidate Hillary Clinton and Republican rival Donald trump sought to showcase their national security and defense credentials. Johnson, a former Republican governor of New Mexico, has been trying to turn the two major candidates’ low approval ratings to his advantage in the race to win the November 8 election in 2016.

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However, he has just 8.6 support in the current average of opinion polls by website RealClearPolitics in a matchup with Clinton, Trump, and Green Party candidate Jill Stein.

While the Libertarian Party has long rejected U.S. military intervention abroad, the candidate’s failure to recognize one of the most troubled spots in the Middle East drew ridicule and prompted speculation that his campaign was essentially over.

Clinton asked at a news conference about Johnson’s remarks, laughed and quipped, “You can look on the map and find Aleppo.”

In a statement after the MSNBC interview, Johnson said the mistake showed he was human and explained that, when asked about Aleppo, he was thinking of an acronym and not the Syrian war.

War-torn Aleppo in Syria. Wikimedia Commons
War-torn Aleppo in Syria. Wikimedia Commons

“Can I name every city in Syria? No. Should I have identified Aleppo? Yes. Do I understand its significance? Yes,” he said.

In the 2012 presidential election, Johnson set a record for most votes won by a Libertarian candidate- about 1 percent of the popular vote – and was aiming to attract disaffected Republicans and Democrats to sustain steady growth in the party.

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The Libertarian agenda promotes civil liberties and a small-government agenda. Johnson has pledged to cut spending, stick to conservative fiscal policies and legalize marijuana.

Appearing on ABC’s talk show “The View” later, Johnson reacted mildly to suggestions the gaffe would kill his campaign. “I guess people will have to make that judgment,” he said.

– by Aakash Mandyal with inputs from VOA

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  • Ankit Sharma

    Poor guy.Could cost him a seat.That’ll be a lesson to him!

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Syrian Army captures key town from Islamic State (ISIS) in northern countryside of Aleppo province

The Syrian Army unleashed a wide-scale offensive in the northeastern countryside of Aleppo, after succeeding to wrest control over the city of Aleppo last December

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Rebel fighters walk near damaged buildings in al-Rai town, northern Aleppo countryside, Syria, Dec. 30, 2016

Damascus, Feb 26, 2017: The Syrian Army captured a key town in the northern countryside of Aleppo province on Sunday, following battles with the Islamic State.

Capturing the town of Tadef enables the Syrian army to secure transportation routes in eastern Aleppo, and constitute a base for launching attacks and undermining the presence of the IS militants in that part of the province, the Syrian army said in a statement, according to state news agency SANA.

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The town is also located southeast of city al-Bab, which was recently captured by Turkish forces and allied rebel fighters.

The Syrian Army unleashed a wide-scale offensive in the northeastern countryside of Aleppo, after succeeding to wrest control over the city of Aleppo last December.

The offensive enabled the military forces to assume control of territory 600 km east of Aleppo.

Also, the army has laid a siege along the southern rim of al-Bab city, to secure the eastern part of Aleppo city from IS attacks, or the possible advance of the Turkish-backed rebels.

Observers believe that there was a Russian-Turkish understanding for splitting the battles in al-Bab.

For the Turks, capturing al-Bab cuts the way in the face of the growing Kurdish influence in northern Syria, a red line drawn by Turkey.

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For the Syrian army, laying a siege to al-Bab from its southern edge prevents the IS fighters to withdraw toward other stronghold in eastern province of Deir al-Zour, or northern city of al-Raqqa, the de facto capital of the terror-designated group.

The Syrian government has always looked to the Turkish moves in northern Syria as an encroachment upon the sovereignty of the country, claiming that Ankara was capturing areas in northern Syria to build a wall, which could be a prelude to setting Ankara’s long-demanded safe zones in northern Syria, near the Turkish borders. (IANS)