Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. Good on Trump: Iran

 

I have a long history of knocking Trump. However, I want to pause for a minute and praise him for Iran. Trump has greatly exceeded my expectations and even my wilder hopes.

First, an American contractor is killed in Iraq.

Second, Trump hits back at the five militia camps in western Iraq and eastern Syria, killing 19 militia members.

Third, a militia in Iraq overruns the outer portion of our embassy, doing lots of property damage, but not hurting our people who fall back to a defensible location, including a “safe room.” Iranian Ayatollah Khamenei boasts that there is nothing that Trump can do. Someone should have sent him a copy of the 2011 White House Correspondent’s Dinner where Obama taunted Trump. A very, very bad idea.

Fourth, Trump orders the targeted killing of Qasem Soleimani. Soleimani was killed in Iraq, not Iran or Syria. I understand that there had been an order that if any Iraqi government officials had been present, the killing would not have taken place, which is extremely prudent. Shortly after the motorcade starts, Soleimani was killed along with an Iraqi leader with strong ties to the embassy attack. Soleimani is a strategic genius, not unlike George Marshall or Dwight Eisenhower. (After their military service, these two rare “five-star” generals went on to serve in government. Marshall became Secretary of State, Eisenhower became President.)

Fifth, Trump avoids spiking the football in the end zone, based on the Trump curve. (Far too triumphalist for me, but incredibly restrained for Trump.)

Sixth, the Iranians blow their response in three ways. First, 56 die in a stampede at Soleimani’s funeral. How stupid is that? Can’t they even conduct a funeral? Second, Trump has our forces hunker down for the inevitable rocket attack. There is only property damage, no American lives were lost. Third, Iran shoots down a civilian jet, lies about it and then blames us.

Seventh. Trump again is incredibly measured for him. He reaches out to the Iranian people.

Eighth, the strong Republican skeptics of Trump (often called “NeverTrumpers”) praise Trump. See The Bulwark. David French expresses his support for Trump’s deft moves. Jonah Goldberg praises Trump. At the same time, Democrats and the media lose their minds. Damn, this feels like the Kavanaugh hearings, the result of which being that Kavanaugh was confirmed, and the severe Trump Skeptics joining the Republican fold, until Trump, again, was Trump on other issues.

Ninth, Trump tweets in Farsi “Don’t kill your protestors” according to the Three Martini Lunch.

Was Trump perfect? Far from it. He did not consult with Congress in a timely fashion. He did not consult with allies. He provided inadequate briefings to Congress. His explanations about Soleimani are all over the place. He threatened to commit war crimes. What a mess. But still, for Trump, he did very, very well indeed. We are safer today. The world is a better place today with Soleimani dead, and Iran weakened.

I really didn’t think that he had it in him. It is good to have him come through so well. Good on Trump.

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There are 63 comments.

  1. Doug Kimball Thatcher

    Welcome to the team!

    BTW, you still owe me a beer, remember?

     

    • #1
    • January 13, 2020, at 12:13 PM PST
    • Like
  2. James Gawron Thatcher
    James Gawron Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    Gary Robbins: Good on Trump. I really didn’t think that he had it in him. It is good to have him come through so well. Good on Trump.

    Gary,

    The most bizarre outcome is Nancy Pelosi siding with the Mullahs against the people of Iran who have gone to the streets in protest at the risk of their lives. I have always referred to Nancy as ‘Queen of the Space Cadets’. This is conclusive proof that my appellation was always spot on. The woman is in desperate need of a psychiatrist.

    Regards,

    Jim

    • #2
    • January 13, 2020, at 12:16 PM PST
    • 11 likes
  3. Gary Robbins Reagan
    Gary Robbins

    Doug Kimball (View Comment):

    Welcome to the team!

    After Reagan was shot, he said to his doctors, I hope you are all Republicans. Their response was “Today Mr. President, we are all Republicans.”

    Today, I am a MAGA Trump supporter on this issue.

    BTW, you still owe me a beer, remember?

    I don’t remember. Please remind me.

    • #3
    • January 13, 2020, at 12:16 PM PST
    • 10 likes
  4. MichaelKennedy Coolidge

    Nice post. Not all NeverTrumpers reacted well and the Democrats are acting like Iran defense lawyers.

    I keep saying Trump is so lucky in his enemies. For example.

    https://www.powerlineblog.com/archives/2020/01/pelosi-unhinged.php

     

    • #4
    • January 13, 2020, at 12:17 PM PST
    • 4 likes
  5. Gary Robbins Reagan
    Gary Robbins

    James Gawron (View Comment):

    Gary Robbins: Good on Trump. I really didn’t think that he had it in him. It is good to have him come through so well. Good on Trump.

    Gary,

    The most bizarre outcome is Nancy Pelosi siding with the Mullahs against the people of Iran who have gone to the streets in protest at the risk of their lives. I have always referred to Nancy as ‘Queen of the Space Cadets’. This is conclusive proof that my appellation was always spot on. The woman is in desperate need of a psychiatrist.

    Regards,

    Jim

    You and Trump are right on this one. Nancy Pelosi is wrong on this one.

    • #5
    • January 13, 2020, at 12:18 PM PST
    • 3 likes
  6. Gary Robbins Reagan
    Gary Robbins

    MichaelKennedy (View Comment):

    Nice post. Not all NeverTrumpers reacted well and the Democrats are acting like Iran defense lawyers.

    Which NeverTrumper criticized Trump on Iran? That truly is TDS.

    I keep saying Trump is so lucky in his enemies. For example.

    https://www.powerlineblog.com/archives/2020/01/pelosi-unhinged.php

    • #6
    • January 13, 2020, at 12:20 PM PST
    • 1 like
  7. JamesSalerno Coolidge

    Great post Gary.

    If Trump can get Iran moving in the right direction (and that’s a big if), that has to be seen as a huge step towards world peace. Far more noteworthy than any of Obama’s Nobel-prize winning peacekeeping accomplishments.

    • #7
    • January 13, 2020, at 12:29 PM PST
    • 4 likes
  8. Valiuth Member
    Valiuth Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    Gary, Gary, Gary… he still has plenty of time to botch it up. Taken in context I would say we can’t say much has really changed about the Iranian situation strategically. At best we are back to where we were just after he pulled out of the “Iran Deal”. He’s still sucking up to Kim, has still folded like a cheap lawn chair in Syria, is capitulating in Afghanistan, alienating our allies, except for the worst of them whom he is sucking up to rather obsequiously, and generally making an ass of himself whenever the opportunity presents.

    I give him points though for making the Tucker Carlson’s of the world squirm as they try to square their isolationist circles to the new Trumpist party line on Iran. It fun to watch. 

    • #8
    • January 13, 2020, at 12:35 PM PST
    • 4 likes
  9. PHCheese Member

    “ Trump was not perfect”. That’s quite the standard , but welcome aboard at least for this voyage Gary.

    • #9
    • January 13, 2020, at 12:36 PM PST
    • 4 likes
  10. Gary Robbins Reagan
    Gary Robbins

    Valiuth (View Comment):

    Gary, Gary, Gary… he still has plenty of time to botch it up. Taken in context I would say we can’t say much has really changed about the Iranian situation strategically. At best we are back to where we were just after he pulled out of the “Iran Deal”. He’s still sucking up to Kim, has still folded like a cheap lawn chair in Syria, is capitulating in Afghanistan, alienating our allies, except for the worst of them whom he is sucking up to rather obsequiously, and generally making an ass of himself whenever the opportunity presents.

    I give him points though for making the Tucker Carlson’s of the world squirm as they try to square their isolationist circles to the new Trumpist party line on Iran. It fun to watch.

    I agree that Trump has generally been poor on this issues. But I think that he has done well during the last 30 days with Iran, so I wanted to issue praise where praise is due.

    • #10
    • January 13, 2020, at 12:39 PM PST
    • 3 likes
  11. Fake John/Jane Galt Coolidge

    You left off one of the most important things about this. That by killing Soleimani Trump has seriously disrupted the middle east playing field. This particular individual may have been the most significant opposition to any sort of deal with Iran. His death may not cause peace but I believe there is now a much better chance for resolutions. Most likely not today or tomorrow, but next year or so? Who knows?

    • #11
    • January 13, 2020, at 12:39 PM PST
    • 3 likes
  12. Gary Robbins Reagan
    Gary Robbins

    Fake John/Jane Galt (View Comment):

    You left off one of the most important things about this. That by killing Soleimani Trump has seriously disrupted the middle east playing field. This particular individual may have been the most significant opposition to any sort of deal with Iran. His death may not cause peace but I believe there is now a much better chance for resolutions. Most likely not today or tomorrow, but next year or so? Who knows?

    You are right.

    • #12
    • January 13, 2020, at 12:41 PM PST
    • 2 likes
  13. Gary Robbins Reagan
    Gary Robbins

    Ninth, Trump posts in Farsi, “Don’t kill your protestors.” Brilliant.

    [Edit. Added to post.]

    • #13
    • January 13, 2020, at 12:48 PM PST
    • 3 likes
  14. Jim McConnell Member
    Jim McConnell Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    And “Good On You,” Gary, for acknowledging that Trump is not always wrong.

    • #14
    • January 13, 2020, at 12:59 PM PST
    • 3 likes
  15. Gary Robbins Reagan
    Gary Robbins

    Jim McConnell (View Comment):

    And “Good On You,” Gary, for acknowledging that Trump is not always wrong.

    He has done a good job on judges, taxes and regulations. Trump is not the Anti-Christ.

    • #15
    • January 13, 2020, at 1:03 PM PST
    • 10 likes
  16. Nohaaj Coolidge

    Gary Robbins (View Comment):

    Jim McConnell (View Comment):

    And “Good On You,” Gary, for acknowledging that Trump is not always wrong.

    He has done a good job on judges, taxes and regulations. Trump is not the Anti-Christ.

    Gary, reset your password, someone hacked your account.

    • #16
    • January 13, 2020, at 1:25 PM PST
    • 25 likes
  17. Arahant Member

    Nohaaj (View Comment):
    Gary, reset your password, someone hacked your account.

    I laughed, but to be fair to Gary, he has done this sort of thing before.

    • #17
    • January 13, 2020, at 1:36 PM PST
    • 12 likes
  18. Seawriter Member

    I liked one of your posts on Trump. A first.

    But you deserved it.

    • #18
    • January 13, 2020, at 1:56 PM PST
    • 11 likes
  19. Henry Racette Contributor

    Gary,

    I emailed my kid brother, back in 2017, that “If I’m pro-Trump by 2020, I’ll buy you lunch.” I got a note from him the other day, reminding me and saying he was looking forward to my next visit.

    I still dislike people saying to me “welcome to our side” and stuff like that, because I’m not as wholeheartedly and confidently pro-Trump as many of his long-time enthusiasts. I do want him to win in November, want that very much. And I’ve removed the “cautiously” from my standard position vis a vis Trump, which has long been “cautiously optimistic.” I’m just optimistic, now.

    Anyway, keep honestly calling balls, strikes, and home runs as you see them. I think that’s best for everyone.

    Hank

    • #19
    • January 13, 2020, at 2:07 PM PST
    • 13 likes
  20. rgbact Member

    Valiuth (View Comment):

    I give him points though for making the Tucker Carlson’s of the world squirm as they try to square their isolationist circles to the new Trumpist party line on Iran. It fun to watch.

    Indeed. I’ll give Tucker and Ann Coulter points for at least not breaking out the lame excuses for Trump, and showing actual anger. Not sure who on Ricochet needed to square some circles too. So, we’ll lose a few NT’s on this….while gaining some Trump skepticism from others.

    Anyway, drone strikes are a LOW bar. Even Obama could pull them off. The overall Iran strategy seems like a mess and we’re closer to war than before, so enjoy your rare Trump highlight.

    • #20
    • January 13, 2020, at 2:12 PM PST
    • Like
  21. Kozak Member
    Kozak Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    Gary Robbins:

    Ninth, Trump tweets in Farsi “Don’t kill your protestors” according to the Three Martini Lunch.

    Darn. Tried to paste the URL for Trumps tweet in Persian which is now the most “liked” tweet in Iranian history.

    • #21
    • January 13, 2020, at 2:15 PM PST
    • Like
  22. Kozak Member
    Kozak Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    • #22
    • January 13, 2020, at 2:18 PM PST
    • 5 likes
  23. Kozak Member
    Kozak Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    • #23
    • January 13, 2020, at 2:18 PM PST
    • 2 likes
  24. Zafar Member

    Gary Robbins: What a mess. But still, for Trump, he did very, very well indeed.

    I guess?

    • #24
    • January 13, 2020, at 2:19 PM PST
    • Like
  25. Gary Robbins Reagan
    Gary Robbins

    Kozak (View Comment):

    I have tears of joy in my eyes. If Iran overthrows the ayatollah and mullah’s wow!

    • #25
    • January 13, 2020, at 2:32 PM PST
    • Like
  26. Zafar Member

    Valiuth (View Comment):

    Gary, Gary, Gary… he still has plenty of time to botch it up. Taken in context I would say we can’t say much has really changed about the Iranian situation strategically. At best we are back to where we were just after he pulled out of the “Iran Deal”. He’s still sucking up to Kim, has still folded like a cheap lawn chair in Syria, is capitulating in Afghanistan, alienating our allies, except for the worst of them whom he is sucking up to rather obsequiously, and generally making an ass of himself whenever the opportunity presents.

    I hope you are wrong, but I fear you are right. 

    From outside America, at least, the world looks less stable and less secure than it did before. 

    • #26
    • January 13, 2020, at 2:37 PM PST
    • Like
  27. Jager Coolidge
    Jager Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    rgbact (View Comment):

    Valiuth (View Comment):

    I give him points though for making the Tucker Carlson’s of the world squirm as they try to square their isolationist circles to the new Trumpist party line on Iran. It fun to watch.

    Indeed. I’ll give Tucker and Ann Coulter points for at least not breaking out the lame excuses for Trump, and showing actual anger. Not sure who on Ricochet needed to square some circles too. So, we’ll lose a few NT’s on this….while gaining some Trump skepticism from others.

    Anyway, drone strikes are a LOW bar. Even Obama could pull them off. The overall Iran strategy seems like a mess and we’re closer to war than before, so enjoy your Trump highlight.

    I don’t actually think we are closer to war than before. To the extent that the leadership in Iran is rational, they do not want full scale war with the United States. 

    A bonus to the no war idea is not really something Trump is responsible for, but hitting that airplane caused Iran a lot of trouble. They have increased protests and State controlled journalists resigning. 

    Iran can not afford for this to go any further than it already has, Trump has never advocated getting into new ground wars. This will all fizzle out with no new war.

    • #27
    • January 13, 2020, at 2:42 PM PST
    • 1 like
  28. Gary Robbins Reagan
    Gary Robbins

    On Fox News Sunday yesterday at the 37 minute point:

    Chris Wallace: “is it far to say [about Trump and Iran] at least, so far, so good?”

    Jonah Goldberg: “Absolutely. Look, as you know, I am a some sort of a Trump Skeptic. But, this seems like some sort of an unalloyed, with the exception of the shooting down of the Ukrainian plane, this seems like an unalloyed win for the United States of America. The intended point of this was not to start World War III, as a lot of people screamed, um, it was, in fact, to end an escalating cycle where Iran was more and more using its own forces instead of proxy forces to try to chase us out of the region, and if the trade-off is killing, is taking Soleimani in exchange for some empty barracks that is an unalloyed win for the United States.”

     

    • #28
    • January 13, 2020, at 2:47 PM PST
    • 9 likes
  29. GLDIII Temporarily Essential Thatcher
    GLDIII Temporarily Essential Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    I think my computer is broken.

    • #29
    • January 13, 2020, at 3:02 PM PST
    • 7 likes
  30. DonG (skeptic) Coolidge

    Gary Robbins: Was Trump perfect? Far from it. He did not timely consult with Congress. He did not consult with allies. He provided inadequate briefings to Congress. His explanations about Soleimani are all over the place. He threatened to commit war crimes. What a mess.

    Good post, Gary. I think the notification to Congress was timely enough, but the messaging was muddled. His team has to expect dissection of every word and should have lots of background material ready. The military should have a media-ready explainer package on every one of those 52 targets. Team Trump should expect the Left to be hypocrites on the legal definition of “imminent” and everything else.

    • #30
    • January 13, 2020, at 3:04 PM PST
    • 4 likes