In a foreign policy speech at the Virginia Military Institute on Monday, GOP presidential nominee Mitt Romney declared that "it's time to change course in the Middle East," proposing that, among other things, the U.S. take a more assertive role in the ongoing civil war in Syria and tighten sanctions on Iran. Romney accused President Obama of "passivity" in the region and said that hope is not a foreign policy strategy. With regard to the more than yearlong battle between Syrian rebels and the regime of President Bashar al-Assad, Romney called for the U.S. to work with other countries to arm rebels. He also touted his support for a two-state solution for peace between Israelis and Palestinians, even though he dismissed the notion during a secretly videotaped speech in May.
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