NEW YORK - US Democratic Vice Presidential nominee Sarah Palin defended her qualifications for the country's number two post, saying she wouldn't blink'' under pressure and that she backs all options'' in fighting terrorists, including pursuing them into Pakistan. I'm ready,'' Ms. Palin said in her first interview on politics since Republican presidential hopeful John McCain picked her as his running mate last month. She acknowledged she has never met a foreign head of state and described her only overseas visit, to see U.S. troops, as the trip of a lifetime.'' At one point in the interview with Charles Gibson of ABC News, she appeared to be at a loss to identify the Bush doctrine, the concept of preemptive war that the administration used as a rationale for invading Iraq. Ms. Palin's positions and familiarity with international issues are under scrutiny because she is a first-term Alaska governor and a surprise pick as the vice presidential nominee. Still, her speech at the Republican National Convention energized the party's base and has helped boost the ticket in polls. "I believe that America has to exercise all options in order to stop the terrorists who are hell-bent on destroying America, and our allies. We have got to have all options out there on the table," she said when asked if the United States had the right to make cross-border attacks into Pakistan from Afghanistan without Islamabad's permission. " ... if there is legitimate and enough intelligent and legitimate evidence that tells us that a strike is imminent against American people, we have every right to defend our country," Ms. Palin told ABC's Charlie Gibson, who grilled hitherto political unknown on foreign policy questions. "As for our right to invade, we're going to work with these countries, building new relationships, working with existing allies, but forging new also, in order to get to a point in this world, where war is not going to be a first option. In fact, war has got to be and military strike a last option," she said. Ms. Palin said that "in order to stop Islamic extremists, those terrorists who would seek to destroy America, and our allies, we must do whatever it takes, and we must not blink. In making those tough decisions of where we go, and even who we target." Analysts noted that her answer came closer to Democratic Presidential candidate Barack Obama, not her party's nominee John McCain. Obama has previously said that, if necessary, he would order American forces to attack targets inside Pakistan even without permission. "If we have actionable intelligence about high-value terrorist targets and President Musharraf won't act, we will," Obama said in a speech last summer. Obama has been attacked for taking that stance, and for announcing it publicly. McCain himself has taken issue with Obama on this issue. Speaking to reporters in February, McCain said, "[T]he best idea is to not broadcast what you're going to do. That's naive... You don't broadcast that you are going to bomb a country that is a sovereign nation and that you are dependent on the good will of the people of that country to help you in the war -- in the struggle against Taliban and the sanctuaries which they hold." And as recently as this July, McCain had made his position on going after al-Qaeda targets in Pakistan -- even the biggest target -- clear. Asked by CNN's Larry King, "If you were president and knew that (Osama) bin Laden was in Pakistan, you know where, would you have U.S. forces go in after him?" McCain responded, "Larry, I'm not going to go there and here's why, because Pakistan is a sovereign nation." That's not the way Ms. Palin sees it. Gibson asked her the question three times, and she dodged it on the first go-round. But then Gibson asked again, saying, "But governor, I am asking you, do we have the right, in your mind, to go across the border, with or without the approval of the Pakistani government?" Ms. Palin answered, "In order to stop Islamic extremists, those terrorists who would seek to destroy America, and our allies, we must do whatever it takes, and we must not blink, Charlie, in making those tough decisions of where we go, and even who we target." Asked again, she said, "I believe that America has to exercise all options in order to stop the terrorists who are hell-bent on destroying America, and our allies."