Donald Trump did not bother to draw any distinction between the Islamic religion and Islamic terrorists during a recent interview, where he bluntly claimed that, “Islam hates us.”
During an interview with Anderson Cooper on CNN, Trump was asked whether or not he believed the Islamic religion was “at war with the West.”
“I think Islam hates us,” the former reality TV star and current GOP presidential frontrunner responded.
“We have to get to the bottom of it,” Trump added. “There is an unbelievable hatred of us — anybody.”
Trump deplored what he called the “tremendous hatred” that he claims at least partially defines the religion. He did say that the war is against radical Islam, but qualified even that statement, saying that radical Islam is “very hard to define. It’s very heard to separate. Because you don’t know who’s who.”
When asked by Cooper if Trump truly meant whether there was, as he said, an “unbelievable hatred of us” in the actual religion of Islam itself, Trump became coy and evasive.
“You’re going to have to figure that out,” he said. “Okay? You’ll get another Pulitzer, right? But you’re going to have to figure that out.”
Trump then quickly turned it to a topic for which he has based his entire platform upon — immigration.
“But there is a tremendous hatred and we have to be very vigilant, we have to be very careful, and we can’t allow people coming into this country who have this hatred of the United States.”
Trump openly called for what he referred to as a “temporary ban” on Muslims entering the United States, “until our country’s representatives can figure out what is going on.” Despite widespread condemnation of the remarks, even from within his own party, Trump has steadfastly stood by the proposal, which he made in the wake of the mass shooting in San Bernardino, California, by ISIS sympathizers. His proposal to ban all Muslims came the day after President Barack Obama asked the country not to “turn against one another” out of fear.
Trump’s supporters believe a ban on Muslims is a “prudent idea.”
Trump has also called for surveillance to be used in mosques within the United States and has said he would be willing to establish a database detailing all Muslims living within the United States.
In addition to those extreme proposals, Trump made headlines with his willingness to not only initiate policies that are considered torture, such as waterboarding, but expand those policies.
“We’re going to stay within the laws. But you know what we’re going to do? We’re going to have those laws broadened because we’re playing with two sets of rules: their rules and our rules,” Trump said, referring to the tactics of ISIS, which include torture and brutal executions.
Trump has also said the United States should not simply focus on capturing or eliminating terrorists, but should eliminate their families, as well.
“The other thing with the terrorists is you have to take out their families, when you get these terrorists, you have to take out their families. They care about their lives, don’t kid yourself. When they say they don’t care about their lives, you have to take out their families,” Trump said.
During his interview with Anderson Cooper, Trump stated that there “can be no doctrine” when Cooper asked him to outline how he would “project power overseas.” And when given the opportunity to clarify how far he would go in regards to terrorists and the families of terrorists, Trump once again declined to give an actual answer, refusing to say what specific measures he would support as president.
“I’ll work on it with the generals,” Trump said. “We have to play the game at a much tougher level than we’re playing it now.”
[Photo by Mychal Watts/Getty Images]