If a certain percentage of the American public fell in love with Donald Trump’s blunt take on illegal immigration, the renewed concern over Islamic terrorism has only increased voter appetite for the unabashed strength Trump brings to the presidential race. Following the devastating terrorist attacks in Paris, America is looking for a leader who will stop at nothing to keep the country safe. Whether or not Trump fits that description is a matter for debate, but he certainly isn’t backing down from the challenge.
Appearing on ABC’s This Week show on Sunday, the real estate tycoon said he would bring back the controversial interrogation technique known as waterboarding if he were to become commander-in-chief.
“I would bring it back,” Trump said. “They don’t use waterboarding over there. They use chopping off people’s heads.”
Waterboarding, for the five people who haven’t heard of it, involves using cloth and water to make a suspect feel as though they are drowning. People who have been subjected to the practice say it is among the most frightening experiences of their lives. Because of the harsh nature of the technique, some have said it qualifies as torture. Others – including CIA leaders under the Bush administration – defend it as a useful interrogation strategy.
Trump compared it to the sickening tactics of the Islamic state. “They use drowning people,” he said. “I don’t know if you’ve seen where they put people in cages. And they drown them in the ocean and they lift out the cage. I think waterboarding is peanuts compared to what they’d do to us.”
Trump also made the case for increased government surveillance of mosques and a database of Islamic refugees from Syria and other places in the Middle East.
If some of Trump’s rhetoric rubs libertarians and Democrats the wrong way, it certainly hasn’t hurt his campaign. According to a new Washington Post/ABC News poll, Trump remains on top of the primary race with 32 percent of the vote. Dr. Ben Carson is back in second place with 22 percent. Marco Rubio, with 11 percent, is the only other candidate in double digits.
To be frank, very little should be off the table at this point. We’re not fighting the British army here. We’re not even fighting to Nazis. We’re fighting a group of animals who have decided to make a religion out of slaughtering anyone who doesn’t pledge allegiance to their version of God. This isn’t a war over land or treasure; it’s a battle between good and evil. If you would waterboard a literal monster, you would waterboard an Islamic terrorist.
Go study the photographs of the Paris dead. Go read interviews with survivors who lost their sons and daughters and sisters and parents in the tragedy. Contemplate the depth of misery and grief ISIS brought to France last week. There is no room for mercy. There is no room for weakness. It’s time to send these jihadists on to their God. Period.