President Trump hosted a number of governors at the White House on Monday, and spoke of the need to “win wars, again” as part of his call to increase defense spending.
“We have to start winning wars again,” Trump said in the State Dining Room of the White House. “I have to say, when I was young, in high school, and college, everybody used to say we never lost a war. We never lost a war. You remember. Some you were right there with me, and you remember? We never lost a war. America never lost.”
“And, now, we never win a war,” Trump said. “We never win. And we don’t fight to win.”
If you can peel through the glitch and jerk of Trumpspeak, there may be a kernel for discussion.
My first thought (and please, you emotional Nancys, don’t tell me I’m being unfair) is that a world leader shouldn’t be openly talking about winning wars, as if war was a goal. War should never be the goal, so maybe don’t signal that America is prowling the world, looking to start one, just to prove we can win.
That being said (and this is one of those promised “attaboy” moments), Trump’s pledge to increase defense spending is one I can actually see a legitimate need for.
During the Obama administration, the president set about to gut our military. Never in my lifetime can I remember an administration that was more disrespectful of our military. His deep cuts to the defense budget were a threat to our national security.
I want to see the military have what they need, in order to defend our nation, in the event of war.
“This budget will be a public safety and national security budget … and will include a historic increase in defense spending to rebuild the depleted military of the United States of America,” Trump said.
He added: “The Middle East is far worse than it was 16, 17 years ago. It’s not even a contest. So we have spent $6 trillion. We have a hornet’s nest. It’s a mess, like you’ve never seen before. We’re nowhere.”
The way Trump speaks is barely coherent, and that will haunt him for whatever length of time he’s in office, but my best translation is: The Middle East is in turmoil. They hate us. We need to be prepared, in the event things go further south than they already are.