Donald John Trump is preparing to speak to the nation tonight about Afghanistan. The word that’s being reported is that the president is planning to announce the addition of several thousand more troops to the conflict that’s been raging for the past 16 years.
The president is getting high marks for recognizing the difference between campaigning and governing. Indeed, President Barack Obama campaigned for office pledging to close the terrorist internment camp at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba; the camp is still open.
Trump has been a huuuuge critic of the Afghan War. He tweeted repeatedly prior to and during his presidential campaign that the war is a lost cause, that we shouldn’t shed any more American blood in Afghanistan.
Now he’s the commander in chief. He’s expected now to say something quite different from what he said while campaigning for the job.
Will the president take a moment tonight to acknowledge that maybe — just maybe — he might have been incorrect in his prior world view? Might he concede finally that he didn’t see the picture as completely as he does now?
That’s what grownups do. They atone for previous statements.
What’s more, my hope — if not my expectation — is that the president will accept responsibility for any potential setbacks that occur once the troops are deployed to Afghanistan. Will he, as commander in chief, realize that he is ultimately responsible for any result stemming from the decisions he makes — be they good or bad?
The record to this point doesn’t portend much maturity coming from the president.
I hope I am wrong.
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