Donald Trump has suffered a second wave of criticism over his speech on Afghanistan that revealed no real course of action, this time over the apparent hypocrisy of his comments on not tolerating bigotry and hate in the military.
During his first official Address to the Nation on Monday, The US President, referring to US troops, declared: “When we open our hearts to patriotism, there is no room for prejudice, no place for bigotry and no tolerance for hate.”
The comment left many bewildered given Trump last month issued an order banning transgender people from serving, which many critics said was a display of intolerance.
Republications were among those to condemn that decision which Trump attempted to defend, blaming “tremendous medical costs and disruption”, despite studies showing there are no tremendous costs or effects on military readiness.
In a series of tweets in July Trump said: “After consultation with my Generals and military experts, please be advised that the United States Government will not accept or allow Transgender individuals to serve in any capacity in the US Military.
“Our military must be focused on decisive and overwhelming victory and cannot be burdened with the tremendous medical costs and disruption that transgender in the military would entail.”
Many called out Trump’s latest statement against “bigotry” in the military, made from Fort Myer, Virginia, as insincere:
The main thrust of Trump’s speech was that military action would continue in Afghanistan, though he gave no specifics about how many longer troops would remain there or whether resources would be increased.
Trump said withdrawing from Afghanistan would leave a vacuum for terrorists to fill and that the US would stay on and “fight to win” to avoid the mistakes made in Iraq.
Rather than having a time-based approach in Afghanistan, Trump said he would base his decisions on conditions on the ground.
The lack of details in Trump’s plans was savaged.