Here’s a nice rundown of the Clinton campaign’s Northern Ireland mumbo-jumbo. I think what her husband’s administration did there was a very legitimate achievement and very much highlights some of the shortcomings of the George W. Bush approach which has no comparable examples of constructive U.S. engagement in the troubles of the world. It also highlights John McCain’s catastrophically poor understanding of foreign affairs as, at the time, he denounced the Northern Ireland initiative as a sellout of a key U.S. ally doomed to failure.
So it’s not a bad issue for Clinton to raise, in its way. But she wants to raise it as an example of her personal foreign policy chops and the evidence just isn’t there. It’s normal for a new president to have little direct foreign policy experience, and either Clinton or Obama would fit that bill. But Clinton seems determined to pretend she’s some kind of seasoned hand that she isn’t.