Nothing wrong with Jon Stewart aiming high for tonight's episode of The Daily Show.
Multihyphenate author and stateswoman Hillary Clinton was Tuesday's guest, and Stewart reportedly introduced her with gusto, saying, "She's here solely for one reason: to publicly and definitively declare her candidacy for president of the United States."
Nothing of the sort happened, of course, although Stewart did his best to wrangle some news from the former first lady, senator, 2008 presidential candidate and author of the recent memoir Hard Choices, about her time spent as secretary of state for the Obama administration.
"I think I speak for everybody when I say, no one cares [about the book]," Stewart deadpanned. "They just want to know if you're running for president."
What Clinton would attest to is that the U.S. is really "in a terrible dilemma" regarding the increasingly violent conflicts in the Middle East, particularly the latest eruption between Israel and the Palestinians in Gaza. Of Hamas, which along with Israel could not agree to terms of a ceasefire proposed by neighboring Egypt, Clinton said, "Their identity comes from being the violent resistance."
She answered in the affirmative when Stewart asked whether she agreed that "the world must do more for the people who are trapped by this conflict."
"Yes," Clinton said. "They are trapped by their leadership, unfortunately. It's a two-prong trapping. They have leadership that is committed to resistance and violence and therefore their actions are mostly about, ‘How do we get new and better missiles to launch them at Israel?' Instead of saying, ‘Hey, let's try to figure out how we are going to help make your lives better.'"
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She also expressed sympathy for the Palestinian civilians who continue to suffer while the warring sides battle it out.
"Unless we can give people enough of a sense of security on both sides that they will be better off and their children are going to be better off, then the guys with the guns can always disrupt anything," she said. "There are extremists on all sides and people with guns on all sides so leadership has to be very tough minded and very strong to make the hard choices." (See: the title of her book.)
So, not even a hint about 2016?!