As John Tabin reported earlier, 2018 was only a few hours old when President Trump returned to Twitter packing a powerful punch aimed at Pakistan:
The United States has foolishly given Pakistan more than 33 billion dollars in aid over the last 15 years, and they have given us nothing but lies & deceit, thinking of our leaders as fools. They give safe haven to the terrorists we hunt in Afghanistan, with little help. No more!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 1, 2018
Which, naturally, has driven the news cycle for much of the day. (Thankfully, it’s been a relatively “slow news day” — appropriate given that many are still recuperating from their New Year’s Eve celebrating and/or battling the flu and/or relaxing and recharging a bit before heading back to work tomorrow.)
Of course, those who recoil from anything and everything Trump says or does have been critical. Kentucky Senator Rand Paul, on the other hand, has weighed in with his support of Trump’s tweet:
I couldn’t agree more. I’ve been fighting to end aid to Pakistan for years and will again lead the charge in the Senate. Let’s make this happen @realDonaldTrump https://t.co/v4KrOrWOyS https://t.co/JNNChCfVqP
— Senator Rand Paul (@RandPaul) January 1, 2018
What prompted Trump’s Pakistan commentary? The Hill reports:
Trump’s tweet followed a New York Times report late last week that said the administration is considering withholding $225 million in aid to Pakistan over frustration with its handling of terror networks — a long-standing source of tensions between the U.S. and Pakistan.
Paul’s support for Trump’s statement is consistent with his long-standing contention that the US should spend less on foreign aid and redirect those funds towards domestic needs, thereby putting “America First.”
One of the things I and many other Americans liked about candidate Donald Trump was his America First policy. He talked often about building here instead of in Pakistan and Afghanistan. We send tens of billions overseas every year in aid, and we have spent trillions fighting and nation-building in Afghanistan and Iraq.
Instead of continuing that, let’s take a portion of that money and spend it here to help the victims of this great disaster.
One sure thing is that President Trump appears intent on continuing his “Twitter diplomacy” in 2018.
Follow SmoosieQ on Twitter: @smoosieq.