I have always believed that the best way to get information on a speech is to read the transcript. Yesterday Donald Trump made a speech on foreign policy. Politico posted the text of the speech. I am not going to post the whole thing, but I am going to post some excerpts with some of my comments.
Here are some of the highlights from the speech:
Today we begin a conversation about how to Make America Safe Again.
In the 20th Century, the United States defeated Fascism, Nazism, and Communism.
Now, a different threat challenges our world: Radical Islamic Terrorism.
This summer, there has been an ISIS attack launched outside the war zones of the Middle East every 84 hours.
Mr. Trump then lists a number of terrorist attacks that have occurred in the United States in recent years.
Nor can we let the hateful ideology of Radical Islam – its oppression of women, gays, children, and nonbelievers – be allowed to reside or spread within our own countries.
We will defeat Radical Islamic Terrorism, just as we have defeated every threat we have faced in every age before.
But we will not defeat it with closed eyes, or silenced voices.
Anyone who cannot name our enemy, is not fit to lead this country.Anyone who cannot condemn the hatred, oppression and violence of Radical Islam lacks the moral clarity to serve as our President.
The rise of ISIS is the direct result of policy decisions made by President Obama and Secretary Clinton.
Mr. Trump then listed the Middle Eastern and Northern African countries in which the Obama-Clinton team encouraged revolutions. None of these revolutions have turned out well, and all have made the world less safe for everyone. In all of the decisions to overthrow stable governments, there were not adequate plans to deal with the vacuum that the overthrow created.
Mr. Trump noted the spread of ISIS:
ISIS has spread across the Middle East, and into the West. In 2014, ISIS was operating in some 7 nations. Today they are fully operational in 18 countries with aspiring branches in 6 more, for a total of 24 – and many believe it is even more than that. The situation is likely worse than the public knows: a new Congressional report reveals that the Administration has downplayed the growth of ISIS, with 40% of analysts saying they had experienced efforts to manipulate their findings.
At the same time, ISIS is trying to infiltrate refugee flows into Europe and the United States.
Mr. Trump also commented on the Iran Treaty:
Iran, the world’s largest state sponsor of terrorism, is now flush with $150 billion in cash released by the United States – plus another $400 million in ransom. Worst of all, the Nuclear deal puts Iran, the number one state sponsor of Radical Islamic Terrorism, on a path to nuclear weapons.
In short, the Obama-Clinton foreign policy has unleashed ISIS, destabilized the Middle East, and put the nation of Iran – which chants ‘Death to America’ – in a dominant position of regional power and, in fact, aspiring to be a dominant world power.
It all began in 2009 with what has become known as President Obama’s global ‘Apology Tour.’
Mr. Trump outlined his plans in the speech:
If I become President, the era of nation-building will be ended. Our new approach, which must be shared by both parties in America, by our allies overseas, and by our friends in the Middle East, must be to halt the spread of Radical Islam.
All actions should be oriented around this goal, and any country which shares this goal will be our ally. We cannot always choose our friends, but we can never fail to recognize our enemies.
As President, I will call for an international conference focused on this goal. We will work side-by-side with our friends in the Middle East, including our greatest ally, Israel. We will partner with King Abdullah of Jordan, and President Sisi of Egypt, and all others who recognize this ideology of death that must be extinguished.
We will also work closely with NATO on this new mission. I had previously said that NATO was obsolete because it failed to deal adequately with terrorism; since my comments they have changed their policy and now have a new division focused on terror threats.
To be honest, I wish nation building worked. I wish we could go into a country, get rid of the tyrants, and help everyone set up a government where they would be free and equal. Unfortunately, reality keeps getting in the way of doing that. On Sunday I posted an article about jihadist training of children that is going on in Gaza summer camp. Camps like this are a serious obstacle to any sort of lasting peace in the Middle East (and an obstacle to ending terrorism).
Mr. Trump identifies the problem and part of the solution:
Just as we won the Cold War, in part, by exposing the evils of communism and the virtues of free markets, so too must we take on the ideology of Radical Islam.
While my opponent accepted millions of dollars in Foundation donations from countries where being gay is an offense punishable by prison or death, my Administration will speak out against the oppression of women, gays and people of different faith.
Our Administration will be a friend to all moderate Muslim reformers in the Middle East, and will amplify their voices.
This includes speaking out against the horrible practice of honor killings, where women are murdered by their relatives for dressing, marrying or acting in a way that violates fundamentalist teachings.
Over 1,000 Pakistani girls are estimated to be the victims of honor killings by their relatives each year. Recently, a prominent Pakistani social media star was strangled to death by her brother on the charge of dishonoring the family. In his confession, the brother took pride in the murder and said: “Girls are born to stay home and follow traditions.”
Shockingly, this is a practice that has reached our own shores.
One such case involves an Iraqi immigrant who was sentenced to 34 years in jail for running over his own daughter claiming she had become “too Westernized.”
To defeat Islamic terrorism, we must also speak out forcefully against a hateful ideology that provides the breeding ground for violence and terrorism to grow.
Mr. Trump had a few comments on immigration:
A Trump Administration will establish a clear principle that will govern all decisions pertaining to immigration: we should only admit into this country those who share our values and respect our people.
In the Cold War, we had an ideological screening test. The time is overdue to develop a new screening test for the threats we face today.
In addition to screening out all members or sympathizers of terrorist groups, we must also screen out any who have hostile attitudes towards our country or its principles – or who believe that Sharia law should supplant American law.
Those who do not believe in our Constitution, or who support bigotry and hatred, will not be admitted for immigration into the country.
Only those who we expect to flourish in our country – and to embrace a tolerant American society – should be issued visas.
To put these new procedures in place, we will have to temporarily suspend immigration from some of the most dangerous and volatile regions of the world that have a history of exporting terrorism.
As soon as I take office, I will ask the State Department and the Department of Homeland Security to identify a list of regions where adequate screening cannot take place. We will stop processing visas from those areas until such time as it is deemed safe to resume based on new circumstances or new procedures.
The size of current immigration flows are simply too large to perform adequate screening.
The speech concluded:
But just like we couldn’t defeat communism without acknowledging that communism exists – or explaining its evils – we can’t defeat Radical Islamic Terrorism unless we do the same.
This also means we have to promote the exceptional virtues of our own way of life – and expecting that newcomers to our society do the same.
Pride in our institutions, our history and our values should be taught by parents and teachers, and impressed upon all who join our society.
Assimilation is not an act of hostility, but an expression of compassion. Our system of government, and our American culture, is the best in the world and will produce the best outcomes for all who adopt it.
This approach will not only make us safer, but bring us closer together as a country.
Renewing this spirit of Americanism will help heal the divisions in our country. It will do so by emphasizing what we have in common – not what pulls us apart.
This is my pledge to the American people: as your President I will be your greatest champion. I will fight to ensure that every American is treated equally, protected equally, and honored equally. We will reject bigotry and oppression in all its forms, and seek a new future built on our common culture and values as one American people.
Only this way, will we make America Great Again and Safe Again – For Everyone.
I don’t know how much of this speech the media will actually quote or how they will report it, but to me, this speech represents a very common sense approach to foreign policy and terrorism. This does not sound like the ranting maniac that the press is attempting to make Donald Trump out to be. I think we need more websites posting transcripts of speeches and less commentary by a biased press.