America averaged one serious Islamic terrorist attack a year under previous President Obama’s tenure. ISIS grew from obscurity to at least 29 different countries under Obama's eight years. According to DHS.gov 73% of convicted terrorists since 9/11 are foreign born. What actions has President Trump taken to stop the continued attacks and growth by radical Islamic terrorism?
*UPDATE: The day Trump was inaugurated — an estimated 35,000 ISIS fighters held approximately 17,500 square miles of territory in both Iraq and Syria. Today the U.S. military estimates the remaining 1,000 or so fighters occupy roughly 1,900 square miles of mostly barren desert primarily in Syria.
1/27/17: President Trump signed an executive order which included banning Syrian refugees indefinitely. Trump said the new measure was intended “to keep radical Islamic terrorists out of the United States of America.” He also stated "We will continue to show compassion to those fleeing oppression, but we will do while protecting our own citizens and voters."
"This is not a Muslim ban, as the media is falsely reporting. This is not about religion -- this is about terror and keeping our country safe." Trump's executive order suspended all immigration from countries with terrorism concerns for 90 days. The State Department said the three-month ban in the directive applied to Iraq, Syria, Iran, Sudan, Libya, Somalia and Yemen — all Muslim-majority nations. The President stated the decision was based on protecting the safety and security of the American people. This decision came on the heels of a NATO commander stating ISIS is "using the Syrian refugee crisis to ‘mask the movement’ of terrorists infiltrating Europe and the United States" and the Syrian leader stating "some Syrian refugees are ‘definitely’ terrorists"
1/28/17: President Trump signed a memorandum to defeat ISIS. It instructed the U.S. military’s Joint Chiefs of staff to come up with a plan in 30 days to defeat ISIS. They are an Islamic terrorist organization that gained power after President Obama completed the withdrawal of American troops from Iraq in 2011. President Obama then grossly underestimated ISIS by calling them "a JV team of basketball" before they grew to over 30 countries. Why hasn't the Western world been able to defeat ISIS? Let's wait and see what President Trump's administration comes up with. This memorandum is a step in the right direction.
3/6/17: The Trump administration rolled out the second edition of the immigration executive order after the first order was blocked by a 9th circuit court judge.
3/22/17: The Department of Homeland Security required passengers on some airlines serving those regions to pack their gadgets—cellphones and medical devices excepted—in their checked bags. The Trump administration confirmed the ban. The restrictions apply to direct flights between the US and airports in eight countries in the Middle East and Africa: Egypt, Jordan, Kuwait, Morocco, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Turkey, and the United Arab Emirates. This ban was decided after U.S. authorities became convinced that security measures for certain U.S.-bound flights needed to be boosted after conducting a series of tests to determine the credibility of new intelligence.
4/13/17: Keeping true to his word of promising to "obliterate ISIS", President Trump ordered the military to drop the LARGEST (a massive Ordnance Air Blast Bomb) non-nuclear weapon in its arsenal for the first time ever on an ISIS tunnel target in Afghanistan.
7/15/17: ISIS was officially driven from Mosul in harrowing Iraqi effort backed by US. Almost 6 years years after President Obama announced the complete withdrawl of American troops in Iraq (creating a vacuum for the then newley formed ISIS) Iraqi forces backed by the US finally drove ISIS out. "We have made tremendous progress against ISIS – more in the past 6 months than in the years since ISIS became a major threat," a Trump White House statement read.
8/18/17: President Trump signed the Global War on Terrorism War Memorial Act: The bill authorizes the Global War on Terror Memorial Foundation to begin the Commemorative Works Act process to establish a National Global War on Terrorism Memorial on Federal land in the District of Columbia.
8/22/17: 8/21/17: President Trump announced that America would be sending 4,000 more troops to Afghanistan. Sixteen years after the U.S. invaded Afghanistan in retaltiation for the Sept 11 attacks, the Taliban still has control of 40% of Afghan districts. Trump stated that withdrawing suddenly and hastily from Afghanistan would create a vacuum for a terrorist breeding ground. The same scenario that took place in 2011 when President Obama withdrew too quickly from Iraq, creating a stronghold for the newly formed ISIS terrorist organization to grow. Trump also reiterated that America would no longer participate in Afghan nation building. Lastly, unlike his predecessor, President Obama, Trump refused to announce a time table on when troops would arrive or leave Afghanistan.
9/19/17: Under President Trump, the United States has dropped a record number of bombs on the Middle East, roughly 10% more than his predecessor. The U.S. strategy against ISIS is now defined by “annihilation tactics,” Defense Secretary James Mattis recently said.
9/30/17: President Trump has taken
the handcuffs off the U.S. military by slowly rolling back Obama-era restrictions on drone strikes against terrorists. Trump has given much more power to the military and increased the authority of the military and the CIA to conduct drone operations. This now allows them to conduct lethal strikes outside a "designated war zone" and without explicit White House approval in advance.
10/6/17: After months of President Trump scolding NATO allies for not spending enough on defense, NATO has reached an agreement to increase allied funding for counterterrorism programs. Under the deal NATO will spend an additional $12 million to $24 million on counterterrorism in 2018.
10/15/17: US-backed militias have completely removed ISIS out of Syria's Raqqa capital. Syrian government forces and their allies seized the town of Mayadeen, an Islamic State stronghold in the country’s east, in a major gain in the race for territories previously held by the militant group. President Trump responded by stating ""It had to do with the people I put in and it had to do with rules of engagement. We weren't fighting to win. We were fighting to be politically correct".
11/1/17: The first Islamic terror attack in the U.S. occurred in NYC where 8 people were killed and injuring 11. The suscpect Sayfullo Saipov legally emigrated from Uzbekistan, a predominantly Sunni Muslim nation north of Afghanistan that is estimated to have produced hundreds if not thousands of supporters for the Islamic State group and other extremist organizations in Syria, Iraq and Afghanistan. Saipov entered the U.S. through the "Diversity Visa Program" which offers a lottery for people from countries with few immigrants in America. President Trump responded by tweeting "The terrorist came into our country through what is called the "Diversity Visa Lottery Program," a Chuck Schumer beauty. I want merit based." Trump also stated he was immediately starting the process to end the program which does not properly vet immigrants or require them to come in on a merit based system.
12/20/17: President Trump’s restored references to the “jihadist” terror threat – in a tacit rebuke to the Obama-era decision to avoid such language.
1/19/18: Trump signed the Section 702 of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) which renewed the National Security Agency’s warrantless internet surveillance program. The tool authorizes the Intelligence Community to target the communications of non-U.S. persons located outside the United States for foreign intelligence purposes. A key anti-terror tool that has helped to thwart numerous terror plots.
1/30/18: President Trump signed an executive order to keep open the military detention facility at Guantánamo Bay.
2/4/18: The Trump administration announced that it was putting fresh sanctions on Hezbollah-linked individuals and businesses in Africa and the Middle East -- a move to limit not only the operations of the terrorist group, but also Iran’s influence in the region.
2/6/18: US Air Force B-52 bomber launched a record-setting series of strikes in northern Afghanistan -- dropping 24 precision-guided munitions on Taliban fighting positions during 96 hours of air operations "to destroy insurgent revenue sources, training facilities, and support networks," according to US Forces Afghanistan.
5/10/18: President Trump announced Iraq arrested five senior members of the Islamic State, including a top aide to the militant group’s leader, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, in an operation that involved U.S. and Turkish intelligence support.
9/9/18: Ibrahim Hassan al-Asiri, al-Qaeda’s chief bomb maker, was killed during a U.S. drone strike late last year. He was the most significant international terrorist removed from the battlefield since Osama bin Laden.