(TFTP) President Trump announced his administration’s strategy for the War in Afghanistan on Monday, and Ron Paul responded with a series of Tweets that echo the sentiments many Americans feel towards the longest war in U.S. history that has now spanned three administrations over 16 years, with no end in sight.
The former Republican presidential candidate and Texas congressman began the evening by saying he was “hoping for the best” with Trump’s address to the nation from Fort Meyer Military Base in Arlington, Virginia. Within minutes, Paul followed up with another Tweet that said simply, “Steve Bannon brakes removed. Neocons feeling their oats.”
As Trump prepared to announce a further extension of the already never-ending war in Afghanistan, he also attempted to pander to the same military personnel who would be leading the charge and risking their lives.
“American patriots from every generation have given their last breath on the battlefield—for our nation and for our freedom,” Trump said. “Through their lives, and though their lives were cut short, in their deeds they achieved total immortality. By following the heroic example of those who fought to preserve our republic, we can find the inspiration our country needs to unify, to heal and to remain one nation under God. The men and women of our military operate as one team, with one shared mission and one shared sense of purpose.”
Paul responded by noting, “the military personnel are the victims of bad foreign policy.” He also pointed out the current predicament, writing “sad that these wars the politicians argue for are unconstitutional yet we are told we are over there defending the Constitution.”
“My original instinct was to pull out, and historically I like following my instincts,” Trump said next, as the tone of his speech shifted while he flip-flopped on a massive scale and attempted to justify it. “But all my life, I have heard that decisions are much different when you sit behind the desk in the Oval Office. In other words, when you are president of the United States.”
Paul replied with, “Mr. President, it’s too bad you do not follow your instincts.”
Ironically enough, Trump actually agreed with Ron Paul and publicly declared this on Twitter before bowing down to the neocon pressure in the deep state and putting more American lives at risk and the guaranteed wholesale slaughter of innocent Afghan citizens.
Trump, just like his two most recent predecessors in the white house, used the same rhetoric, saying, “the consequences of a rapid exit are both predictable and unacceptable.” He then made another huge flip flop and falsely claimed that “9/11, the worst terrorist attack in our history, was planned and directed from Afghanistan because that country was ruled by a government that gave comfort and shelter to terrorists.”
Paul was quick to hold Trump accountable, writing, “[9/11 was] planned in Afghanistan? What about Saudi Arabia?” followed by “What’s wrong with rapid exit? We just marched in, we can just march out.”
As Trump warned about how even after the U.S. has spent over 16 years in Afghanistan, “today, 20 U.S.-designated foreign terrorist organizations are active in Afghanistan and Pakistan. The highest concentration in any region anywhere in the world,” Paul noted that Trump’s speech “sounds like pure neocon foreign policy.”
“The promoters of war win. The American people lose,” Paul wrote. “Remember: There was no al-Qaeda until our foolish invasion of Iraq based on neocon lies. The American people deserve to know we are going to war and MUST give you permission through their representatives in Congress.”
While Trump’s plan to continue the War in Afghanistan was clear, he provided very few specific details. Some reports estimate that the increase in troops will be around 4,000 more than the 8,500 who are currently stationed in the region.
However, Paul noted that no matter the number of troops, this speech indicated that the U.S. will continue the same foreign policy under Trump that it has pushed under Bush and Obama, and the same Authorization for Use of Military Force that was created after 9/11 will continue to be used and abused as more innocent civilians die at the hands of power-hungry neoconservatives in the longest war in U.S. history. “More killing is not the road to peace,” Paul wrote.