When I woke up the morning after the November 2016 election I remember feeling three things. I remember feeling terribly sad because I knew we had missed another great opportunity as a country by not electing Hillary Clinton to the highest office in the land. The second thing I remember feeling was nausea because we had elected the most UNQUALIFIED and CORRUPT president in the history of our republic. I also remember being very fearful that Trump was a man so mercurial and immature he could start a war by misusing or abusing the most powerful military in the world.
He has gotten close a couple of times. He has ramped up operations and come close to giving the green light on some suspect military calls. We know we have had several botched or ill planned military actions that have cost lives. The few instances we have seen a successful use or deployment of force have largely been in spite of Trump not because of him. The U.S. airstrike killing top Iranian general Qasem Soleimani was a hyper aggressive, not very well thought out, over reach by a moody president who has just been impeached by the U.S. House of Representatives and is awaiting trial in the U.S. Senate. There is no question that Soleimani was an enemy of the United States. There is no question that he is personally and solely responsible for hundreds, maybe thousands of American deaths over the last 20 years. Two Bushes and President Obama, along with military leaders in their respective administrations, all decided at different times for varying reasons to not target the general. Simply put, the gain was not worth the risk and fallout.
Removing Soleimani wouldn’t halt their operations and it raise an already popular Iranian leader to the status of martyr for millions of Muslims all around the world. Unless you want to start a war with Iran, and with Muslims, strategically it doesn’t make a lot of sense. Unless, of course, you have another (more pedestrian) reason for doing something so drastic and so extreme. This is what I have feared most with Donald J. Trump as Commander and Chief of the mighty U.S military. As more and more evidence and documents leak daily of Trump’s personal knowledge and directing of the “drug deal” quid pro quo holding up Ukraine aid, and Nancy Pelosi winning the argument for a fair trial in the Senate…Trump needed to pull a P.R. rabbit out of a hat. I think Trump decided to declare war on Muslims and do something so outlandish that it would force the country, the media, and the world to change the subject. Time will tell, and I hope I am wrong, but we have seen this playbook before…haven’t we?