I hoped that Americans would finally take vets issues seriously….but if the posts that I have written in the past and their responses (as anemic as they were) then their “patriotism” is nothing more than a convenient slogan that they trot out whenever needed.
This 2016 election has become the most exhaustive election I have ever been a part of in my (state secret) years.
The dialog between the candidates is about emails, health, Trump U, on and on…..lots of totally irrelevant subjects….neither talking issues and solutions….the closest we get is a pile of platitudes and applause lines……
I have been looking forward to this deal…..the candidates will answer (or what passes for answers) regarding national security and vets issues……….Maybe this will bring out some actual campaign issues…….or so I thought. I was disappointed in the way that it was moderated….Lauer let too much bullshit slide…it was mostly talking points for the two candidates.
Last night the first ever Commander-in-chief forum was held…..it was sponsored by the Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans Association (IAVA)…..the candidates will have 30 minutes to answer questions about national security and veterans issues asked by vets and military people…..
How about a quick recap for those that abstained from watching……
In what many saw as a preview of the Sept. 26 debate, Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump set out very different positions on foreign policy in a national security forum Wednesday night. The “Commander-in-Chief” forum, hosted by NBC and the Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America at the Intrepid Sea, Air, and Space Museum in New York, was hosted by the Today Show‘s Matt Lauer. Clinton and Trump fielded questions and spoke back-to-back, with Clinton going first after winning a coin flip. A round-up of coverage:
- According to NBC, the night will be remembered for Donald Trump offering more praise for Vladimir Putin than for America’s “embarrassing” military leadership. Putin has “been a leader, far more than our president has been a leader,” said Trump, who praised the Russian leader’s 82% approval rating. “We have a divided country.”
- Clinton cast herself as a model of “absolute rock steadiness” in foreign policy compared to Trump, reports the Washington Post, which notes that she seemed “guarded, even stilted” when dealing with questions about her email server and her vote for the Iraq War.
- Clinton said the Iraq vote and the email server were both mistakes, but insisted that she had never sent or received material with a classified header on her private server. “Classified material has a header which has ‘top secret,’ ‘secret,’ ‘confidential,'” she said, per Politico. “Nothing—and I will repeat this, and this is verified in the report by the Department of Justice, none of the emails sent or received by me had such a header,” she added.
- Trump said that under Obama, the US has pursed “the dumbest foreign policy” he has ever seen, the Guardian reports. Asked about his claim that he knows more about ISIS than the generals, he said the generals “have been reduced to rubble” under Obama.
- Trump claimed that he had always been against the 2003 invasion of Iraq, but repeated that he thought the US should have taken the country’s oil. Asked about his plan to defeat ISIS he said: “I have a substantial chance of winning—make America great again. If I win, I don’t want to broadcast to the enemy what my plan is.”
- Clinton, asked about her foreign policy record, said she viewed the use of force as a last resort, CNN reports. “We are not putting ground troops into Iraq ever again and we are not putting ground troops into Syria,” she said, arguing that ISIS could be defeated with air power and regional alliances. She said that no matter what he says now, her and Trump had the same position on both the Iraq War and the Libyan intervention, NBC notes.
- Clinton and Trump were both asked about veterans’ mental health issues, and both promised to do more to reduce suicides. “We’re going to speed up the process, we’re going to create a great mental health division,” Trump said. “They need help.”
- Vox reports that Lauer is taking a lot of flak from both sides for his moderations, with critics accusing him of asking lightweight questions and failing to fact-check the candidates.
- The Washington Post fact-checks the forum, and has plenty of Pinocchios to award to both Clinton and Trump.
Tim Mak at the Daily Beast gives terrible reviews to both the “defensive and lawyerly” Clinton and the “huckster” Trump. They were supposed to show how they were qualified to be commander-in-chief, but “both showed themselves to be both terribly flawed candidates,” he writes.
Personally, neither candidate won….but then I do not support either of them….to me their answers were canned responses….but here is a recap of the night for both candidates…..read then you decide who won this thing…..
Source: POLL: Who Won the Commander-In-Chief Forum? | Heavy.com
Then the next question was….how honest were the candidates answers?
Source: Fact-checking the NBC ‘commander-in-chief’ forum | PolitiFact
I still have grave concerns on what these two see as the problems and the solutions….they were not asked the important questions…like why did you not serve? Would you let your children serve? What are the complexities of the Syria situation? I have more…..but those would have been a question that would have forced an answer and not allowed the canned responses to continue.
Source: Rachel Maddow’s part of NBC forum had the questions veterans should have been able to ask
I feel this was a good thing and should be required with every election to come. But it needs to be expanded in time and expanded to include alternative candidates….this would show that it is not a partisan thing…..it failed this time around. But what did I expect from a forum put on by the MSM?
All in all….an good first attempt. A little tweaking needs to be done before the next one.