Thursday marked the first GOP presidential debate on Fox News and the 17 candidates looked in their mirrors and saw Donald Trump. Despite the caustic allegations made by Fox moderators, Bret Baier, Megyn Kelly and Chris Wallace the American public remains solidly behind Trump, according to a NBC post-debate poll. But we also learned of a telephone call from Fox’s Roger Ailes to Trump where he apologized for the Fox orchestrated attack against him.
The line delivered by the bombastic billionaire that really resonated with the audience was: “I think the big problem this country has — is being politically correct. And I don’t frankly have time for total political correctness. And to be honest with you, this country doesn’t have time either.”
While the “tone” and poor “choice of words” created a faux scandal with the media “pundits,” American’s were busy questioning current lawmakers about the “real” problems facing the country. And foreign policy is a big one.
Dominating the headlines is the Iran deal and it received plenty of lips service, but little was discussed about the clear and present danger that the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) presents.
The US military needs a win, morale is low, and the last real “win” came with Desert Storm. General Colin Powell, who oversaw the first Middle East war, smartly destroyed the will and resistance of the Iraqi forces in Kuwaiti, restored the territorial integrity of Kuwait, and brought US military members home.
Trump has said he would let the military loose to do its job against ISIS, al-Qaeda and other terrorist groups, but stopped short of offering a plan because he argued on Fox’s Greta Van Susteren show; “Why would I want the enemy to know what I’m doing?” The question remains whether Mr. Trump has a plan. So, only time will tell, but judging by the continued set backs under President Obama the next guy or gal better have a plan.
But encouragingly, Trump has identified the politically imposed Rules of Engagement (ROL) under which US troops must follow in prosecuting any war as a significant problem. When American warriors feel the lives and property of the enemy are more important than theirs morale necessarily becomes a factor. The morale crises, only hinders the best-trained and equipped military force in the world. Trump has said he would “let the military loose” to do its job against ISIS, al-Qaeda and other terrorist groups.
With a dearth of debate worthy material the viewers learned of many personally embarrassing faux pas by the candidates but little about where they stand on the issues of national security, the economy, the debt, and immigration. Hopefully those issues will be addressed in the next 14 months.
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