Leading presidential candidate and real estate mogul Donald Trump must have noticed that the candidate nipping at his heels, Texas senator Ted Cruz, got a good reception for his extreme posture on torture and his demand that the police department patrols Muslim neighborhoods. So Trump went further.
Terrorists killed at least 34 people in Brussels Tuesday by bombing a tightly clustered group of people at the Zaventem Airport and bombing a crowded subway stop, too. ISIS (the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria) took credit, after the bombs detonated.
So, Trump bested Ted Cruz by requesting Muslim neighborhood patrols in the U.S. Then, Trump took his request another step, even further into the dark side.
He said the country should begin torturing terror suspects to wring information from them. For a smart guy, apparently, he doesn’t understand that torture leads the tortured to “give up” whatever he or she thinks the torturer wants.
Trump thinks it would be peachy keen to torture Salah Abselam, who was arrested last week for his part in the Paris Bombing last fall:
‘He’ll be talking a lot faster with torture. If he’d have talked you might not have had to blow up all these people dead and all these people horribly wounded because he probably knew about it, I’d be willing to bet that he knew about this bombing that took place today.’
Trump made his case for enhanced interrogation techniques, because he believes terror groups, like ISIS, don’t follow standard procedures:
‘What I would do is — look, to change our law on the water-boarding thing, where they can chop off heads or drown people in heavy steel cages and we can’t waterboard. So we have to change our laws so we can fight at least on an almost equal basis….they have no laws whatsoever that they have to obey.’
A reporter asked Trump if he would go beyond merely waterboarding suspected terrorists, and Trump responded without hesitation, “absolutely:”
‘We’re fighting by different rules. They have no rules or regulations and can blow people up, and have bombs so vicious with the nails and the glass and all the things come spewing out, blinding people and destroying people, and we have rules and regulations and we can’t water-board because it’s a little bit of a tough thing.’
Trump pooh-poohed the argument against waterboarding, even that this torture technique breaks international law. He blames so-called “eggheads,” who don’t know what they are doing.
Aside from the torture techniques, Trump wants to patrol Muslim neighborhoods:
‘I would support that 100 percent.’
Democrats and other liberals say these acts would demonize a religious minority, in order to make political hay on the back of a terror attack. But Trump said:
‘We have to be a lot tougher. Right now they’re looking at us as weak, soft, stupid people.’
Trump spoke to CNN’s “The Situation Room” with Wolf Blitzer about banning Muslims from entering the U.S., and regarding the Brussels bombing, he said there is “no choice.”
Not one to avoid a delicate subject, such as banning Muslims, Trump had this to say:
‘You’re going to make certain exceptions, and exceptions on heads of state and some of these people and I’m not saying we don’t do that. But we have a real problem and people don’t have any idea what’s going on. We have a government that’s impotent, a government that doesn’t get it…it doesn’t understand what’s happening.’
It is not clear whether or not the attacks are related to the arrest of Abdeslam last week. Abdeslam is a suspect in the Paris attacks that took place late last year. Officials took the man into custody after they located him living in a mainly Muslim community.