FORT WAINWRIGHT, Alaska — Sarah Palin proposed NATO membership for Georgia and Ukraine, at risk of putting the U.S. in conflict with Russia, and declared her readiness for high office Thursday as she took a cautious step out of the protective bubble she’s been in since joining John McCain’s ticket.
“You can’t blink,” said the first-term Alaska governor, asserting in an ABC News interview that she is prepared to be vice president and take on the weight of the presidency should it ever come to that.
“We will not repeat a Cold War,” she said. But she said she favored including Georgia and Ukraine, former Soviet republics, in NATO despite opposition by Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin. Asked whether the United States would have to go to war with Russia if it invaded Georgia, and the tiny country was part of NATO, Palin said: “Perhaps so.”
“I mean, that is the agreement when you are a NATO ally, is if another country is attacked, you’re going to be expected to be called upon and help,” she said.
McCain also has talked a tough line in defense of Georgia, while speaking of a role for NATO in less explicit terms. He said last month that NATO should “begin anew the discussions about a membership track for both Georgia and Ukraine.”
Palin said she didn’t hesitate when McCain asked her to be his running mate.
“I answered him ‘yes’ because I have the confidence in that readiness and knowing that you can’t blink, you have to be wired in a way of being so committed to the mission, the mission that we’re on, reform of this country and victory in the war, you can’t blink,” she said. “So I didn’t blink then even when asked to run as his running mate.”
The Interview will be broadcast by ABC on Friday at 10PM.
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