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Wall Street Journal scorches Trump for getting played by Iran in brutal editorial

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In a scathing column from the editors of the Wall Street Journal, Donald Trump received a dressing down for his aborted attack on Iran with the piece saying the Middle Eastern country “called his bluff” and he will come to regret it.

The editors took Trump to task for not only ordering an attack and changing his mind at the last minute — but for also for his attempt to lay the blame on the Pentagon.

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“It’s important to understand how extraordinary this is. The Commander in Chief ordered ships and planes into battle but recalled them because he hadn’t asked in advance what the damage and casualties might be? While the planes were in the air, he asked, oh, by the way? This is hard to take at face value,” they wrote.

“More likely, he changed his mind because he had second thoughts about the military and political consequences of engaging in a conflict he promised as a candidate to avoid,” the editors insisted. “Mr. Trump may have saved Iranian lives now, but his indecision and professed fear of casualties may be risking more American lives later.”

In an indictment sure to rankle the president, the Journal compared Trump’s decision to former President Barack Obama.

“After Barack Obama failed to enforce his ‘red line’ in Syria in 2013, adversaries soon took advantage. Vladimir Putin snatched Crimea from Ukraine and moved into Syria, China pushed further into the South China Sea, and Iran expanded its proxy wars in the Middle East. Will they draw similar license now from Mr. Trump’s stand-down?” the piece asked before taking a larger shot at the president.

“The great weakness of Donald Trump’s foreign policy is its volatility. He is unpredictable to a fault. He has doubted his own Venezuela policy from the first week he signed off on it. He called Kim Jong Un crazy but now says he’s a swell guy. He signed a trade deal with Mexico then threatened it with new tariffs,” they accused. “On Iran he has adopted a policy goal favored by hawkish Sen. Lindsey Graham but wants to use only the means of isolationist Sen. Rand Paul to achieve it. He warned that ‘if Iran wants to fight, that will be the official end of Iran,’ but he lets Iran shoot down a drone and interfere with international shipping.”

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“If Mr. Trump’s real policy is Mr. Paul’s, then he should be honest with Americans and return to the Obama nuclear deal. In the meantime, Iran appears to be calling Mr. Trump’s bluff,” the editorial concluded.

You can read the whole thing here (subscription required).

 

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GOP senators lob out excuses to avoid watching impeachment hearings: ‘Took my kid to school’

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European ambassador Gordon Sondland's impeachment testimony sent shock waves through Washington D.C. on Wednesday -- but they seemingly weren't felt by Republican senators.

Per CNN's Michael Warren, multiple GOP senators said on Wednesday that they were not watching Sondland's testimony, which directly implicated President Donald Trump in a quid-pro-quo scheme with Ukraine.

Sen. Tom Cotton (R-AR), for example, said that he "took my kid to school" instead of watching Sondland, while Sen. Lamar Alexander (R-TN) said he was busy "chairing my own hearing."

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Ken Starr says ‘it’s over’ for Trump: Democrats know ‘the president in fact committed the crime of bribery’

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Former independent prosecutor Ken Starr suggested on Wednesday that President Donald Trump impeachment could now be a sure thing.

Following the testimony of European Union Ambassador Gordon Sondland, Fox News host Bret Baier called the witness "very damning" for Trump -- and Starr agreed.

"We've gotten close to the president," Starr said of Sondland's testimony. "The president may have covered himself by saying no quid pro quo, the record is muddled. So we have Gordon Sondland's understanding. It doesn't look good for the president substantively."

Starr compared the current process to the articles of impeachment that were drafted against President Richard Nixon.

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‘Emergency neurological symptoms?’ Internet explodes in laughter over Trump’s bizarre ‘I WANT NOTHING’ notes

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President Donald Trump read handwritten talking points as he departed the White House on Wednesday.

His notes were written in Sharpie marker on a notepad.

Here's some of what people were saying about Trump's remarks.

https://twitter.com/samstein/status/1197200696044654593

https://twitter.com/Lawrence/status/1197207906455822340

https://twitter.com/revrrlewis/status/1197203825595170816

https://twitter.com/jean_yoon/status/1197196681542021121

https://twitter.com/AmandaMarcotte/status/1197204127526330368

https://twitter.com/Acosta/status/1197196178057814016

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