Presidential candidates Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton have clashed over national security again, Trump calling his Democratic rival "trigger happy" and Clinton arguing his proposals would make the world a more dangerous place.
The two White House hopefuls have waged a running battle this week over who is best placed to command the world's most powerful military, both touting their support from retired military leaders and attacking each other's temperament and judgment. The presidential election will be held on November 8.
Trump also injected drama into the debate this week by endorsing Russian President Vladimir Putin as a strong leader who has fared better than US President Barack Obama. Clinton, many Democrats and even some in his own Republican party baulked.
Trump, speaking on Friday at the conservative Value Voters summit in Washington, painted Clinton as a "massive failure" while she was America's top diplomat from 2009 to early 2013, blaming her for the turmoil in the Middle East.
"The problem is, Hillary Clinton is trigger happy. Her tenure has brought us only war, destruction and death. She's just too quick to intervene, invade, or to push for regime change," he said at the summit.
Meanwhile in New York, Clinton met national security and foreign policy experts supporting her campaign to discuss terrorism. She touted the bipartisan nature of the meeting and vowed to work across the aisle as president to tackle national security challenges.
"The nominee on the other side promises to do things that will make us less safe," Clinton told reporters at a news conference on Friday afternoon. "National security experts on both sides of the aisle are chilled by what they're hearing from the Republican nominee."
Trump's speech on Friday comes after the candidate took the unusual step of criticising US policy in a program aired on Thursday night on Russian government-funded television news network, RT. He said he disagreed with the US decision to invade Iraq in 2003 and Obama had botched the withdrawal.
"It's a war we shouldn't have been in, number one," Trump said in the interview. "And it's a war that, when we got out, we got out the wrong way. That's Obama."
Critics of the network, which mostly targets audiences outside Russia, have described it as a propaganda arm of Putin's government.
Clinton blasted Trump for appearing on the network and praising Putin.
"Every day that goes by this just becomes more and more of a reality television show," Clinton said.
The White House said it had no comment on Trump's remarks.
Trump also sought on Friday to blame Clinton after reports North Korea had tested a nuclear weapon, arguing it was the fourth such test since the Democrat became secretary of state in 2009 and that she should have ended the nation's nuclear program before her tenure ended.
Clinton called the North Korea test "outrageous and unacceptable," saying she supported imposing additional US and United Nations sanctions.