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Ex-CIA Director Petraeus visits Fulton, comments on U.S.-Russia relations

Former CIA Director and four-star General David Petraeus visited Westminster College for the annual Churchill celebrations. General Petraeus spoke about the importance of Winston Churchill, but also the United States' fight against ISIS. (Caileigh Peterson/KRCG)

Former CIA Director and four-star General David Petraeus visited Westminster College for the annual Churchill celebrations.

General Petraeus spoke about the importance of Winston Churchill, but also the United States' fight against ISIS.

"What we're engaged in in the Middle East and in a number of other areas as a fight as a coalition against Islamic extremists is going to be generation in duration," General Petraeus said. "This is not something that is a fight of a decade, much less a few years."

General Petraeus said Russia would be essential in the fight.

"I think Russia wants to see the defeat of Islamic extremists just as we do," he said.

While Petraeus noted the US should work with Russia to defeat ISIS, he commented that officials must also keep an eye out for Russia and its government.

"As we engage with Russia, there is no question we should do this with our eyes wide open in a very coldly, realistic way with no illusions that Russia shares our support or values such as freedom of expression, and democracy, and universal human rights," he said.

Petraeus stated if there was a love fest between President Donald Trump and Russian President Vladimir Putin, it appears to be over.

However, Petraeus proclaimed the biggest concern for the US at the moment is not Russia, but North Korea.

"I think that North Korea is the most pressing threat because of the fact that it could confront the President of the United States with a situation where he has to make that most important decision whether or not to use force," General Petraeus said.

General Petraeus was honored to be in Fulton celebrating Winston Churchill.

"I'm a wonderful student of Churchill. I think this museum is a tremendous and fitting tribute to the individual William Manchester described as the last lion. His quotes alone are still relevant to this day," General Patraeus said.


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