The Donald Trump Presidency

On Mideast Policy, the Swamp Drains Trump


PJ Media, by Robert Spencer, May 18, 2017:

Speaking Friday about President Trump’s trip to the Middle East, National Security Adviser H. R. McMaster said that Trump would:

… develop a strong, respectful message that the United States and the entire civilized world expects our Muslim allies to take a strong stance against radical Islamist ideology.

Those who are aware of how badly U.S. foreign policy has run off the rails over the last fifteen years should be deeply disturbed.

The world has been waiting in vain for that decade-and-a-half for “our Muslim allies to take a strong stance against radical Islamist ideology.” McMaster’s words were a disquieting indication that the foreign policy swamp, one in the most dire need of draining, has instead turned the tables on the president.

Trump now appears set to repeat all the mistakes his last two predecessors made in dealing with the global jihad threat.

McMaster added that jihad terrorists were operating according to “an ideology that uses a perverted interpretation of religion to justify crimes against all humanity.” But Trump, on the other hand, “will call for Muslim leaders to promote a peaceful vision of Islam.”

Here we go again.

How many times since 9/11 has one American spokesman or another declared that “the United States and the entire civilized world expects our Muslim allies to take a strong stance against radical Islamist ideology”? And what do we have to show for this expectation? How many years must we expect this before we realize that our “Muslim allies” have vastly different priorities than what mainstream counterterror analysts would wish to believe?

Pakistan’s government sheltered first bin Laden and now Zawahiri, was involved in the Mumbai jihad massacre and other jihad attacks, and has funneled much of the money the U.S. gave it to fight al-Qaeda and the Taliban to … al-Qaeda and the Taliban.

Turkey has repeatedly refused to strike strongly against the Islamic State (ISIS). President Recep Tayyip Erdogan is much more concerned with hitting Assad and the Kurds.

How long do we keep waiting on these “Muslim allies” to do the right thing, and weakly and pusillanimously calling upon them to do so?

And Trump “will call for Muslim leaders to promote a peaceful vision of Islam”? Well, there’s something we’ve never seen tried before!

Where has McMaster been for the last decade-and-a-half? Buried deep in the foreign policy establishment swamp that has been serving up this nonsense all these years. And now he has apparently sold President “Drain The Swamp” on it.

Both Bush and Obama called for Muslim leaders to promote a peaceful vision of Islam; they also both claimed that the jihadis’ version of Islam “uses a perverted interpretation of religion.” Where did it get them? The same place comforting falsehoods always take you: into a maze of blind alleys and failed policies based on incorrect analysis.

Even worse, McMaster said:

[W]ith President Abbas, Trump will express his desire for dignity and self-determination for the Palestinians.

Does no one around Trump understand that a Palestinian state would immediately become a strengthened base for new and more virulent jihad attacks against a weakened Israel? When they met in Washington recently, Abbas lied brazenly to President Trump: he claimed that his government “educates for peace,” and that the Palestinian Authority is “raising our youth, our children, our grandchildren on a culture of peace.” Meanwhile, on the same day, Abbas’ government honored 12 jihad mass murderers who are responsible for the deaths of 95 people.

The foreign policy establishment’s house organ, Foreign Policy, is worried that “in the White House ‘Game of Thrones for morons,’ Steve Bannon is trying to turn the president against his national security advisor.” We can only hope that Bannon succeeds. It’s ironic that Foreign Policy would dub the Trump team “morons” when it is the foremost exponent of the analyses and policies that have failed multiple times, and that McMaster is once again pushing.

Once again, because he has done this before. In February, according to CNN:

[A]t an all-hands meeting of the National Security Council, [McMaster] said jihadist terrorists aren’t true to their professed religion and that the use of the phrase “radical Islamic terrorism” doesn’t help the US in working with allies to defeat terrorist groups.

A source who has asked to remain anonymous for fear of reprisals has informed me that he was present in August 2014 when McMaster was the featured speaker for the President’s Lecture Series at National Defense University in Washington. In his address, McMaster said flatly:

The Islamic State is not Islamic.

Now, this was during the Obama regime, when that was the official policy of the U.S. government, but President Trump has repeatedly criticized his predecessor (and his 2016 election opponent) for not being willing to call the problem of jihad terror by its right name. When he first became president, Trump repeatedlystated his determination to eradicate “radical Islamic terrorism.”

But what McMaster has announced represents a giant step backward in the effort to do that.

This represents a huge victory for the McCain/Graham Republican establishment, which subscribes no less than McMaster does to the “Islam is a religion of peace” line, and is also trying to neutralize Trump and keep the swamp from being drained.

Don’t break this promise, Mr. President.

9 thoughts on “On Mideast Policy, the Swamp Drains Trump

  1. Many of Trump’s wounds are self-inflicted, this being an example. The root of the problem is two fold: 1) he has no core ideology and 2) he tries to view everything as being his next big deal. In lacking an ideology, in this case a consistently conservative one, he fails to see that Islam is NOT a religion, but a 7th century complete system of living that uses a religious component to brutally enforce the rest. This blind spot allows him to assume that he can make a deal with Islamists. You can’t. They are like the Democrats in the U.S. – they maneuver however they have to maneuver to achieve their goals, driving relentlessly toward their goals. When it comes to that, the Sunnis and the Shia will drop their differences and unite against the West. What irritates me about this trip the most is that Trump ditched his campaign promise to move the U.S. embassy in Israel to Jerusalem. He has now thrown the Israelis under the bus in search of his illusory “deal” with the Islamists.
    Quelle dommage!

    1. Yeah well I guess let’s just hope Gorka, Bannon and the others can steer him in the right direction. As for Islam, he should take his advice from a true Muslim reformer: General El Sisi before espousing fiction. But we shall wait for his speech before jumping the gun.

  2. President Trump has found out that being a politician certainly isn’t as easy as he made it out to be. One thing is for sure – he will come out richer in the end but I do feel sorry for the Americans that truly believed he could change things.

  3. Pres. Trump is being blocked by those who want a New World Order, the MSM, Democrats and other sore losers. What does it tell you when Obama couldn’t produce his (fake) birth certificate until his third year in office? What does it tell you that Obama’s connections with the Weather Underground weren’t mentioned by anyone in the MSM except Andrew Breitbart, who died two weeks later? What does the fate of Seth Rich tell you, who was the DNC/WikiLeaks leaker? He was murdered for outing Hillary Clinton who stole the primary election from Bernie Sanders.

    1. Those are aspects which I may be prepared to criticize. But this is about Trump’s and selling out aspects of his campaign’s promises, not Obama or Clinton.

  4. Could it be that 9/11 was a false flag by certain foreign powers, one of which was Saudi Arabia? That is what some folks believe. Food for thought.

    One thing for sure is that the Saudi regime is an odious one and no friend to Western values. Consider how these people treat foreign workers in their country. Many times these foreign workers are raped and killed but you don’t hear about that in the press. Trump ought not kiss their backsides. We no longer need their oil.

    1. There’s a sure possibility in that. Yeah and remember how trump liked that poem ‘the snake’? Well Saudi Arabia is that exact snake, funding salafist mosques across the globe which radicalise Western Muslims and contributed to much of the enthusiasm for Islamic State. Iran might be bad but Saudi Arabia is worse, why not let the capitals of Islamic barbarism bang heads first and then pick up the pieces afterwards?

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