Colin Powell Should Have Been President for a Time Like This

DonaldTrumpHeadshotAs most Americans know, North Korea has launched several ballistic missiles this year as tests indicating progression toward their stated goal of possessing nuclear ICBMs that can reach the U.S. mainland thousands of miles away. Only days ago, North Korea fired its first missile that U.S. intelligence said was capable of reaching the U.S. mainland and that they now have the capability of miniaturizing a nuclear warhead to fit on such a missile. The time has now arrived that the U.S. was hoping would never happen with the rogue, communist state of North Korea. This trouble began in 1950 when the U.S. was South Korea’s ally in the Korean War. There has never been a peace treaty between these two allies with North Korea. So, every since the Korean War to this day the U.S. and South Korea theoretically have always been in a state of war with North Korea. Indeed, the U.S. has stationed 30,000-40,000 of its own troops all these decades to the present in South Korea along its border with North Korea, with the demilitarized zone (DMZ) in between.

In recent days, the young North Korean President Kim Jong Un has been making bellicose statements about attacking the U.S. with such nuclear weapons. President Donald Trump responded to these threats yesterday by making quite a threat himself. Of course, Mr. Trump is well known for threatening all kinds of people throughout his career as a businessman and now as the U.S. president.

So, yesterday President Trump said at his golf club in Bedminster, New Jersey, “North Korea best not make any more threats to the United States. They will be met with fire and fury like the world has never seen.” He said of North Korean President Kim, “he has been very threatening beyond a normal state. They will be met with fire, fury and frankly power the likes of which this world has never seen before.”

What did Trump mean? Well, I think Donald Trump can’t be trusted very well about anything he says. He has proved that numerous times in less than eight months in office as president. The worst fire and fury the world has ever seen is the U.S. dropping two atomic bombs on Japan that killed perhaps 200,000 or less to end WWII. Trump said he will do a lot worse merely if North Korea keeps making threats. For any rational person, that has to mean that President Trump will have nuclear weapons launched that will attack North Korea resulting in perhaps millions of casualties. Moreover, Trump is talking about a pre-emptive strike with nuclear weapons, which goes completely against past American policy and that of many other nations in the nuclear arms club. If President Trump meant what he said, this a very dangerous situation. It sure makes me wish even more that we had somebody else as our president.

Colin Powell is a four-star U.S. Army general who served, I think, quite admirably as U.S. Secretary of State in Republican President George W. Bush’s administration. Of course, Powell also could have served just as well as Secretary of Defense. Before that, Powell was the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff during the 1991 Persian Gulf War. Mr. Powell has much experience as both a military man and a politician.

ColinPowellColin Powell was born and raised in Harlem as the son of immigrant Jamaican parents. He achieved a college degree in geology at City College of New York. He got a masters degree in business administration from George Washington University. As a Republican, he was considered a political general. But Mr. Powell had a good relationship with President Barak Obama. I think if the Democratic Party would have asked Colin Powell to be its nominee for president last year, he would have accepted.

I have much respect for Colin Powell. He seems to be a man of integrity and a person who chooses his words wisely that he speaks in public. Mr. Powell has spent a lifetime serving his country with much distinction, honor, and awards. And he has been married to one woman, Alma, with whom he has three grown children.

I think Hilary Clinton prevented Colin Powell from becoming our president right now. Mrs. Clinton and her husband Bill Clinton, a former U.S. president, were no doubt the most prominent and powerful two people in the Democratic party. Mrs. Clinton got her party’s nomination for president last year because she was so determined to become the first female president of the U.S. I don’t blame her for that. However, I think most Americans who follow our national political scene would admit the Democratic nomination of Colin Powell for its presidential candidate would have given the party a better chance to defeat the Republicans’ nominee–Donald Trump.

When most people speak to friends privately, they more likely say what’s on their mind, and with unbridled passion and words, than they would publicly. On September 14, 2016, less than two months before the presidential election, DCLeaks.com released transcripts of some Colin Powell private emails it had obtained surreptitiously. In them, Mr. Powell said of the Republican nominee Donald Trump that he is “a national disgrace and an international pariah.” He also said of the Democratic nominee Hilary Clinton, “I would rather not have to vote for her, although she is a friend I respect.” He added that she is “a 70-year old person with a long track record, unbridled ambition, greedy,” etc.

Surely Mr. Powell was embarrassed about these remarks when they were made public. When I first read about them or heard them on TV, I immediately thought Powell’s remark about Mrs. Clinton having such ambition and greed may have indicated something about the Democratic Party’s nomination of her for its presidential candidate. Surely there were many leaders in the Democratic Party who wanted Colin Powell as their presidential candidate.

As it turned out, probably the main thing that kept Mrs. Clinton from winning was that she did not rate well in polls about her likability. I think she would have done all right as our president. But I also think that Colin Powell is not only more likable but has several other qualities that would have made him a better choice as the Democratic nominee. Being a four-star general who is fairly articulate and respected by the public are my first two that come to mind.

I suspect that there was a power struggle going on in the Democratic Party for the presidential nomination between mostly Hilary Clinton and Colin Powell and Powell’s comment about her having “unbridled ambition” referred to Hilary Clinton getting the nomination for that reason rather than him.

If Colin Powell was our president right now, I think he would be handling this difficult situation about North Korea in a way that most Americans would feel better about than what they feel about how President Donald Trump is handling it so far. But I want to reiterate that this is a difficult situation that has been ongoing for so many years, it has now gotten a whole lot worse, and it appears there are no good options for the U.S. about it no matter who is our president. May God help the president we’ve got.

 

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