GOP 2012 hopeful Rep. Ron Paul (R-TX) thinks U.S. troops will soon be on the ground for an occupation of Pakistan — and he said so on MSNBC's "Morning Joe" Wednesday morning.
Paul called America's relationship with Pakistan "an impossible situation," where the U.S. hailed both its friendship with and suspicion of the country.
"I think we are going to be in Pakistan, I think that's going to be our next occupation, and I fear it," Paul said. "It's ridiculous. I think our foreign policy is such we don't need to be doing this."
Paul said he had no inside information on Congress authorizing or ordering troops to invade Pakistan. He simply said based on U.S. history, he wouldn't be surprised to see further U.S. involvement there.
"Right now, Pakistan is a big problem," he said. "We have created a civil war there, and the fact that we go over there and we violate their security and the people rebel against the government because they see their government as being a puppet of the American government, so it's total chaos and I'm afraid, and I hope I'm absolutely wrong, but I'm afraid we'll be in Pakistan trying to occupy that country, and it will probably be very unsuccessful."
In the weeks since President Barack Obama announced that Navy SEALs had killed al-Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden, Paul has said that he would not have given the go-ahead for the mission.
"I think the real tragedy of this is that we didn't get him 10 years ago when we could have and should have," he said.
Earlier this month, Paul supported an ultimately failed resolution to bring the troops home from Afghanistan beginning in July.
Data from a new Gallup poll released Tuesday night shows that while Paul enjoys high name recognition — 76 percent among Republicans, trailing only former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney. However, despite his name recognition and popularity with the tea party, the poll shows Paul is not viewed favorably by Republican voters.
Watch Rep. Ron Paul's remarks on Morning Joe below, originally broadcast May 18, 2011, and embedded courtesy MSNBC.