Jeb Bush has been having a hard time this week after justifying his brother’s 2003 invasion of Iraq. But the heaviest criticism did not come from his political opponent Hillary Clinton, who has been silent. It came from a 19-year-old college student, Ivy Ziedrich. After a meeting in Reno, Nev., on Wednesday, Ziedrich, a member of the local Young Democrats chapter, challenged Bush on his assertion that the Islamic State terrorist group was a consequence of the Obama administration’s withdrawal of U.S. troops from Iraq.

This transcript, courtesy of The Washington Post, details the encounter:

Ziedrich: The threat of ISIS was created by the Iraqi Coalition Authority which ousted the entire government of Iraq. It was when 30,000 individuals who were part of the Iraqi military, they were forced out, they had no employment, they had no income. Yet they were left with access to all of the same arms and weapons. Your brother created ISIS.

Bush: Is that a question?

Ziedrich: You don’t need to be pedantic to me, sir.

Bush: Pedantic? Wow.

Ziedrich: You could just answer my question.

Bush: So what is the question?

Ziedrich: My question is why are you saying that ISIS was created by us not having a presence in the Middle East when it’s pointless wars, when we sent young men to die for the idea of American exceptionalism? It’s this idea – like, why are you spouting nationalistic rhetoric to get us involved in more wars?

Bush: We respectfully disagree. … Al Qaeda had been taken out, there was a fraudulent system that could have been brought up to create, to eliminate the sectarian violence and we had an agreement that the president could have signed, it would have kept 10,000 troops, which is less than what we have in Korea. It could have created the stability that would have allow for Iraq to progress. The net result was, the opposite occurred because immediately that void was filled. And so, look, you can rewrite history all you want but the simple fact is that we’re in a much more unstable place because America pulled back.

–Posted by Roisin Davis

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