Executive Intelligence Review


In Spirited Interview with ‘Face the Nation,’ President Trump Slams the Endless Wars

Feb. 3, 2019 (EIRNS)—President Donald Trump gave an interview on Feb. 1 to CBS News’ “Face the Nation” host Margaret Brennan, broadcast on Feb. 3. Covering the leading issues, President Trump was feisty, especially on his determination to end all the endless wars, and his progress in his discussion and policy-setting with North Korean Chairman Kim Jong Un and China’s President Xi Jinping.

Brennan asked Trump about the Worldwide Threat Assessment on which the U.S. intelligence directors testified on Capitol Hill this past week, saying, “you called them naïve and told them to go back to school.”

President Trump responded:

“When I took over Syria it was infested with ISIS. It was all over the place. And now you have very little ISIS and you have the caliphate almost knocked out. We will be announcing in the not-too-distant future 100 percent of the caliphate which is the area—the land— ... 100 [percent]. We’re at 99 percent right now, we’ll be at 100.... At the same time, at a certain point, we want to bring our people back home. If you look at Afghanistan ..., very soon we’ll be going into our 19th year, spending $50 billion a year. Now if you go back and look at any of my campaign speeches or rallies, I talked about it all the time.”

He continued:

“We were supposed to be in Syria for four months. We’ve been there for years. We have been in Afghanistan for 19 years. We got to get out of these endless wars and bring our folks back home.... We’re spending more money than anybody’s ever spent in history, by a lot. We spent, over the last five years, close to $50 billion a year in Afghanistan. That’s more than most countries spend for everything, including education, medical, and everything else, other than a few countries.”

But Brennan countered that “The Senate Republicans voted, the vast majority of them said that they don’t support what you’re doing. That what you’re doing risks national intelligence by a precipitous withdrawal from Syria and Afghanistan.” Trump replied:

“I ran against 17 Republicans. This was a big part of what I was saying, and I won very easily. I think the people out in the world—I think people in our country agree. We’ve been fighting for 19 years. ... precipitously? We’ve been there for 19 years.”

Trump said further that he had gone to Walter Reed Hospital:

“I see what happens to people. I see [soldiers] with no legs and no arms. And I’ve seen also what happens to them up here [mentally] because they’re in this situation, and they come back and they are totally different people—where the wives and the fathers and the mothers say, ‘What has happened to my son? What has happened, in some cases, to my daughter?’ It’s a terrible thing. We’ve been there close to 19 years. And it’s time. And we’ll see what happens with the Taliban. They want peace. They’re tired. Everybody’s tired. ... I don’t like endless wars. What we’re doing, is [we’ve] got to stop at some point.” He further asserted that going into Iraq was “one of the greatest mistakes we’ve ever made.”

At the end of the 15-minute interview, Trump replied to a question about China:

“I can tell you this, no two leaders of this country and China have ever been closer than I am with President Xi [Jinping]. We have a good chance to make a deal. I don’t know that we’re going to make one, but we have a good chance.”