Trump Score Card
5/30/17: President Trump's first ever foreign trip was considered by both sides of the aisle as successful for several reasons. On his nine-day trip, Mr. Trump hit all of the notes he wanted to on a broad range of issues: defeating the Islamic State, isolating Iran, linking symbolically three of the world’s great religions against terrorism, challenging the Muslim world to shut off the financing of extremism, promoting Middle East peace talks and confronting Western allies to get serious about their own security.
1: For starters he was the first U.S. President ever to visit Israel's Western Wall.
2: Trump was also the first U.S. President ever to take a direct flight (and possibly first flight ever) from Saudi Arabia to Israel.
3: He also negotiated the single largest arms deal in US history with Saudi Arabi worth $110 billion USD.
4: He didn't bow to the Saudi Arabian king like his predecessor President Obama did.
5: Trump called out the members of Nato (in their own backyard) for not paying their agreed upon amount.
6: Unlike any other President during their first trip to the Middle East, the President, in Saudi Arabia, told leaders of 55 Muslim majority countries representing more than a billion people to do their fair share to "drive out" terrorism from their countries. He described the fight against terrorism as a battle between good and evil rather than a clash of civilizations. "America is prepared to stand with you in pursuit of shared interests and common security. But nations of the Middle East cannot wait for American power to crush this enemy for them,"
5/25/17: President Donald Trump told Nato members in Brussels that all members of the alliance must pay their fair share of defense spending. He stated "This is not fair to the people and taxpayers of the United States, and many of these nations owe massive amounts of money from past years and [from] not paying in those past years". As of May, 2017 America was contributing the highest rate % of any other Nato member. In fact only 5 of the 28 members paid their agreed upon amount. (2% of their gross domestic product on defense.)
President Trump reversed yet another one of Obama's policies stating he was "cancelling the completely one sided deal with Cuba". This overturned (most, not all of) President Obama's 2014 policy of easing restrictions on the opressive Cuban government. Trump stated "Easing restrictions on travel and trade does not help Cuban people. It only empowers the Cuban regime." , "We will not lift sanctions until all polictial prisoners are free and elections are free" , "My actions today bypasses the Cuban government and goes directly to the Cuban people". He also called for the end of protecting American cop killers by Castro.
Why do we agree with Trump's decision? Here's why:
Cuba has been under the dictatorship of the Castro brothers for nearly 60 years. The Cuban government is in fact one of the worst human right violators in the world. Cuban law limits freedom of expression, association, assembly, movement, and the press. There have been an untold amount of political executions, irrational imprisonments and torture of prisoners by the Cuban government. America should not be easing restricions to such a ruthless government.
Obama's policy that eased restrictions on the Cuban dictatorship only empowered the Castro oppressive government, not the Cuban people. In fact, the following has taken place AFTER Obama's new Cuban policy:
A: Cuban opposition activists have said the number of arbitrary arrests of dissidents rocketed to nearly 10,000 last year.
B: President Obama experienced a humiliating handshake with Raul Castro showing Castro has no respect for American leadership.
C: President Raúl Castro derided American democracy as a sham. During a two-hour address to the twice-a-decade meeting of the Cuban Communist party”
D: The Cuban oppressive miliatry was receiving funds from American tax payers.
4/20/17: The Trump administration negotiated the release of a US citizen who was held in an Egyptian prison for three years. President Barack Obama attempted to negotiate their release with Egyptian President Abdel Fatah al-Sissi; however, the chilled relationship between the two countries complicated the talks.
2/2/17: Trump imposed new sanctions on Iran to punish Tehran for its recent aggressive behavior including its ballistic missile program and terrorism sponsorship. We say its about time. Something had to be done. Their recent actions included over 300 incidents of taunting US ships, detaining US sailors and broadcasting them surrendering to Iranian forces on their knees, multiple ballistic missile tests, capturing a US drone , imprisoning four American hostages and publicly threatening America on several occasions. Amazingly, Iran's dangerous behavior continued even after the Obama administration released to them an estimated $150 billion dollars in assets and also paid Iran an additional $400 million in cash for release of hostages.
2/15/17: Trump directly tells Netanyahu to 'hold off on settlements for a bit in Israel. President Trump stated "As far as settlements, I'd like to see you hold back on settlements for a little bit," "We'll work something out, but I would like to see a deal be made. I think a deal will be made."
We agree with President Trump here. This is arguably the most complex world issue that no previous U.S. President could solve. But there is absolutely no chance of a two state solution as long as Israel keeps building settlements. Granted the Palestinians don't recognize Israel as a legitimate state however for decades Israel has pursued a policy of building Jewish settlements on occupied Palestinians territory. Most countries view the settlements as an obstacle to peace but many in Israel disagree, citing a biblical, historical and political connection to the land as well as security interests.
5/24/17: President Donald Trump placed a note in the Western Wall becoming the first sitting U.S. president ever to visit the Western Wall, one of Judaism's holiest sites.
The Trump administration negotiated the release of American college student Otto Warmbier from North Korea. Negotiations started within the first two months of Trump's Presidency in Norway, Sweden. No money was paid or prisoners swaped to North Korea. The father of Otto Warmbier citicized Obama while praising Trump for the release of his son.
1/25/17: The Trump administration froze Obama’s attempt to send $221 million to the Palestinian Athuthority. Congress had initially approved the Palestinian funding in budget years 2015 and 2016, with the US Agency for International Development sending the Palestinians $355 million in 2015. Most all Americans can't understand why the American government continues to send billions of dollars overseas, especially to countries and organizations that publicly threaten and criticize America. This money instead would be much better used if it went towards America's infrastructure, helping the vets, homelessness, innovation, fighting crime or strengthening the military.
6/13/17: President Trump's Secretary of state announced Palestinians have changed their policy as a result of pressure from the Trump administration. The Palestinian Authority will no longer pay families of convicted terrorists.
A very complicated issue. One that was ignored by President Obama during his 8 years in office. During that time Syria has entrenched itself in a seven year civil war resulting in displacing millions of Sryian refugees all over the world. President Obama's red line was ignored by the brutal Syrian President Bashar al-Assadin in 2013 when he killed more than 1,400 civilians in Syrian using chemical weapons. America was criticized for not acting as leader of the world and allowing a cancer of the globe to grow. Barack Obama, who declared a red line against Syria and failed to enforce it in 2013, settlled instead for a deal on chemical weapons. The Obama administration declared repeatedly that they had successfully made a deal with Syria to get rid of "100%" of their chemical weapons.
4/3/17: Syrian dictator Bashar al-Assadin ordered another chemical attack in northern Syria killing at least 85 people, including 20 children. This time, with President Trump at the helm, the reaction was much different. As the world watched, America responded quickly by launching 59 tomahawk missles striking the Syrian military airfield that was responsible for the chemical attack on the Syrian civilians.