Election 101: Where the GOP candidates stand on China, Iran, Israel and other key foreign issues

Take a look at where each of the GOP candidates stands on foreign policy and national security issues.

By , Staff writer

5. Newt Gingrich

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    Republican presidential candidate, former House Speaker Newt Gingrich speaks during a business forum, Thursday, Dec. 8, 2011, in Greenville, S.C.
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China

As speaker, strongly supported increased US trade with China. Now warns of consequences for US independence of China holding trillions of dollars of US debt.

Middle East

Supports “regime replacement” in Iran and calls country’s nuclear program only a symptom of a bigger problem of ruling ayatollahs. Insists he could topple regime in a year by “overtly sabotaging” it but only using military intervention as a last resort.

Terrorism

Says US is losing war on terror. Blasts Obama administration notion that Al Qaeda is on the ropes. Would grant FBI “extraordinary” tools to take on growing domestic terrorism but says that should not worry law-abiding citizens. Considers counterinsurgency doctrine ill-suited to Afghanistan, but opposes Obama’s withdrawal timetable as too rapid.

Defense spending

Calls himself a “cheap hawk,” would target “bureaucratic waste” at the Pentagon, and does not rule out defense cuts.

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