Declaring the New York truck attacker “an animal,” President Trump declared the US to be hitting ISIS “10 times harder” after the Tuesday terror attack, saying the US is getting revenge for the attacks and “we hit them like you folks won’t believe.”
The claims are in keeping with President Trump’s eagerness to present military force and increased aggression as the go-to solution to terrorism. His assertion, however, is simply untrue, with Pentagon data showing no change in the execution of the wars.
Indeed, Pentagon officials appeared surprised at Trump’s claims when pressed for evidence, offering a very content-light statement about how the US always hits terrorists hard wherever they find them. Trump’s spur-of-the-moment declaration, however, appears to have given them no time to manufacture anything giving even the appearance of an increase in strikes.
Trump’s off-the-cuff claims have tended to leave US agencies scrambling to try to explain things that are plainly false, but the 10 times harder claim was patently absurd, as it would rest on the assumption that the US could even conceivably increase their attacks tenfold on a moment’s notice.
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