Trump to Fight Terrorism with ‘Extreme Vetting,’ Coalitions

YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio – Donald Trump, Mike Pence and  Rudy Giuliani painted a dark picture of U.S. foreign policy — specifically in regards to fighting ISIS and terrorism — during Hillary Clinton’s four years of Secretary of State and Barack Obama’s eight years as president.

The Republican nominee began his speech at Youngstown State University by listing terror attacks in the country — Boston, Fort Hood, Orlando, San Bernardino and others – as well as the attacks in Paris and Nice, France.

Indiana Gov. Mike Pence, the GOP’s vice presidential nominee, told of serving on Capital Hill Sept. 11, 2001, walking through the rubble of the World Trade Center a week later and visiting the field outside Shanksville, Pa., where Flight 93 crashed.

“Since then, I’ve seen the sacrifices of the American solider in the global war on terror,” he said. “Then I watched … as the hard fought gains they won were squandered by the failed foreign policies of Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton.”

Giuliani, who was mayor of New York City on 9-11, proclaimed, “We don’t want war. They do,” and then asserted that domestic terror attacks “all started when Clinton and Obama got into office.”

Under Trump’s administration, the future of the country — after defeating “radical Islamic terrorism — would be much more secure the nominee asserted. The United States would begin an “extreme vetting” process on those who want to immigrate here, establish commissions and conduct conferences on radical Islam and join forces with any country working to stop the advance of the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria.

“I also believe that we can find common ground with Russia in the fight against ISIS. Wouldn’t that be a good thing?” Trump asked. “They, too, have much at stake in the outcome in Syria and have had their own battles with the Islamic State just as bad as ours.”

An international coalition would be formed, he said, with Israel, Jordan, Egypt and others who “recognize this ideology of death must be extinguished.”

The vetting process for immigrants wouldinclude ideological screening to weed out terrorists and “those who are hostile to the United States or believe that Sharia law should supplant U.S. law,” Trump said.

“The time is overdue to develop a new screening test for the threats we face today,” he said. “Only those who we expect to flourish in our country and to embrace a tolerant American society should be issued visas.”

Trump said among his Day One tasks would be suspending immigration from “some of the most dangerous and volatile regions of the world that have a history of exporting terrorism.”

Trump did not name any countries included on that list, but did say the Department of Homeland Security and State Department would countries from where adequate screening of immigrants or visitors cannot take place, due to either sheer numbers or violence.

“We will stop processing visas from those areas until such a time as it deemed safe to resume based on new circumstances or procedures,” he said. “The size of current immigration flows are simply too large to perform adequate screenings. … If we can’t control the numbers, we can’t perform adequate screenings.”

Trump contrasted his plan against that of Clinton’s, which he said would allow for more than 620,000 refugees allowed into the United States during her first term and cost the country more than $400 billion over their lifetimes.

“In short, Hillary Clinton wants to be America’s Angela Merkel. And you know what a disaster immigration has been to Germany and the people of Germany,” he said, citing crimes committed by refugees, including sexual assaults.

Finally, Trump outlined his plans to return to “common sense security procedures,” saying that warning signs existed for the 9/11 attackers, the Boston bombers and the San Bernardino and Orlando shooters.

Included in new security procedures woul be a national commission on radical Islam, drawing together federal and local police agencies, as well as “Islamic reformists who will hopefully work with us.

“We want to build bridges and erase divisions,” Trump said. “The goal of the commission will be to identify and explain to the American public the core convictions and beliefs of radicalism to identify the warning signs … and expose the networks in our society that support radicalization.”

Closing out his speech, Trump said the defeat of radical terror lies very much in the same strategies used to end the Cold War under President Reagan.

“To make America safe again, we must work together again,” he said. “Our victory in the Cold War relied on a bipartisan and international consensus. That is what we must have to defeat radical Islamic terrorism.”

Reaction to Trump’s policy speech on terrorism was positive by virtually all in attendance. He rarely ventured off of the prepared speech delivered to him via teleprompter and when applause broke out, he took only a few seconds to take it in before returning to speaking.

“He stuck to his message. He made no major forays into places he didn’t have to go,” said Ralph Meacham, the Mahoning County Auditor. “He seemed well-thought out and it was a major step for his campaign.”

For Lordstown Mayor Arno Hill, one of the few Republican mayors in the Mahoning Valley, Trump’s speech inspired continued support.

“I can agree with just about everything he said,” Hill said. “He is a uniter instead of a divider. I know for a lot of people, he just talks off the cuff. But I think he’s smart enough to surround himself with people who will help make America great.”

Many in the crowd, media and supporters alike, noted that the speech lacked many of the hallmarks that have come to be associated with Trump’s rallies – disruptions from protesters, anti-Clinton chants and the nominee’s high-energy, extemporaneous public speaking.

“It’s not a political rally. It’s a political speech,” said Paul Sracic, chairman of YSU’s department of politics and international relations. “It was very calmly delivered speech and maybe, if there’s any evidence for a pivot, this is evidence for that pivot. … It was a presidential type speech.”

Mark Munroe, chairman of the Mahoning County GOP, said Trump’s speech laid out a “new vision for America” that addresses the nation’s issues abroad head-on.

“It’s a vision that’s designed to keep America safe and designed to confront our enemies rather than evade them. I think he hit it out of the park,” he said. “Americans should be very encouraged and proud that we have this kind of candidate willing to step forward and lead America out of the mess we have right now.”

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Read Transcript of Trump’s Speech at YSU

Copyright 2021 The Business Journal, Youngstown, Ohio.