Remember when Senator Lindsey Graham (R-SC) was willing to criticize President Donald Trump for the ridiculous things the president said and did, especially in the foreign policy arena? Oh, how times have changed.
And now we have a new report from The Daily Beast which suggests that Graham has dialed back his attacks on Trump in the hopes that he can turn the president into a hawk on defense matters.
During an Oval Office meeting Graham had last year with Trump, Bob Woodward notes that Graham urged Trump to tell the Chinese they should assassinate North Korean leader Kim Jong Un because war with North Korea was “inevitable.” Graham also allegedly told Trump:
“There is a military option: to destroy North Korea’s nuclear program and North Korea itself. If thousands die, they’re going to die over there. They’re not going to die over here — and [Trump has] told me that to my face.”
As for Syrian president Bashar al-Assad, when the Syrian leader used chemical weapons, Trump reportedly told Defense Secretary James Mattis to “fucking kill” Assad for his actions. And he got backing for that option from Graham. Graham admitted as much to the Daily Beast:
“We should have killed the bastard, I am dead serious. After he used chemical weapons the second time we should have done with him what we tried to do with [Muammar] Qaddafi. That was a big mistake.”
Graham’s deliberate attempts to get closer to Trump — playing golf with him and defending him against the Mueller investigation — don’t sit well with other members of the GOP. A senior congressional aide commented:
“Lindsey Graham has been virtually wrong on every foreign policy decision in the last two decades. From Iraq to Libya to North Korea. We would be at war with half the world if Lindsey had it his way. Candidate Trump was right when he tweeted that Graham has zero credibility.”
And for a man as unstable as Donald Trump, the last thing he needs is someone encouraging him to engage in military actions that could potentially wind up leading to a world war.
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