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Albright praises Obama, chides Romney

  |   Nov. 5, 2012 at 2:33 PM
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WASHINGTON, Nov. 5 (UPI) -- Even as both U.S. presidential hopefuls discuss nation-building at home, the United States won't become isolated, ex-Secretary of State Madeleine Albright said.

"Americans are tired after the war in Iraq and also after Afghanistan, which has been the longest war in American history," Albright told Der Spiegel in an interview published Monday. "President Barack Obama has said that we need to spend more money at home."

American would remain an "indispensable nation" on the international stage, and the term is applicable even with more nation-building at home than abroad, she said during the interview conducted in the United States.

"[There] is nothing in the word 'indispensable' that means going it alone; and so President Obama has long insisted on the need for partnership and alliance-building, particularly with Europe," she told the German publication.

Europe remains important to America even if it seems U.S. foreign policy is focused on the Middle East and China holds the majority of American debt, she said.

She said she doesn't think Americans believe their country is on an influential decline.

"We are still a beacon of hope, a country that accepts diversity in a way that other countries do not. There is no other country like that; we are exceptional," Albright said.

The presidential campaign by Republican candidate Mitt Romney has been "demagogical" by saying the country isn't as strong as it once was.

"But that simply unmasks his shallow and misguided understanding of foreign policy," the former secretary of state said. "President Obama has highlighted again and again that, in a more multipolar world, America is stronger in partnership with growing powers."

She said she found Romney's saying Obama has been "apologizing for America around the globe" insulting and would "lead us backward not forward."

"It is an accusation that does not make any sense," she said. "I think that the United States is the strongest when we are realistic, when we respect the views of other countries."

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