President Barack Obama pushed back against Republicans’ criticism of his foreign policy, saying they should ask Osama bin Laden “whether I engage in appeasement.”

At a forum yesterday, former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney echoed remarks by several Republican candidates running for their party’s presidential nomination, saying that Obama adopted “a course of appeasement” that has weakened the U.S. military and caused the U.S. to shirk commitments to allies.

Obama responded during a question-and-answer session with reporters in the White House briefing room, citing action by U.S. forces under his orders to kill bin Laden and other al- Qaeda leaders.

“Ask Osama bin Laden and the 22 out of 30 top al-Qaeda leaders who’ve been taken off the field whether I engage in appeasement, or whoever’s left out there,” Obama said. “Ask them about that.”

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