Tucker Carlson Saved America (At Least Temporarily)
He heard from his generals and his diplomats. Lawmakers weighed in and so did his advisers. But among the voices that rang powerfully for President Trump was that of one of his favorite Fox News hosts: Tucker Carlson.
While national security advisers were urging a military strike against Iran, Mr. Carlson in recent days had told Mr. Trump that responding to Tehran’s provocations with force was crazy. The hawks did not have the president’s best interests at heart, he said. And if Mr. Trump got into a war with Iran, he could kiss his chances of re-election goodbye.
This is true, actually. The Republican president and the Republican Party led this country into a disastrous and unnecessary war with Iraq. One reason we have a Republican president now is because Trump ran against that appalling record. If Trump throws it away to start what will surely be a vastly more complicated and devastating war with Iran — my God, the Republican Party will deserve to be reduced to silt. More:
The concerns that Mr. Trump heard from Mr. Carlson reflected that part of the presidential id that has always hesitated at pulling the trigger. Belligerent and confrontational as he is in his public persona, Mr. Trump has at times pulled back from the use of force, convinced that America has wasted too many lives and too much money in pointless Middle East wars and wary of repeating what he considers the mistakes of his predecessors.
As Mr. Carlson and other skeptics have argued, a strike against Iran could easily spiral into a full-fledged war without easy victory. That, Mr. Trump was told, was everything he ran against. And so the president struggled into the early evening, committed to taking action to demonstrate resolve right up until the moment he decided against it and called off the warplanes and missile launchers.
The decision made, the military ordered ships and planes in the region to stand down. At the White House, Mr. Trump turned on his television to watch the opening of Mr. Carlson’s 8 p.m. show, where he heard what surely must have sounded like vindication. Onscreen, Mr. Carlson declared that “foreign wars have ended in dismal failure for the United States.”
While no decision had been announced yet, Mr. Carlson praised Mr. Trump for resisting military intervention in Iran. “The same people who lured us into the Iraq quagmire 16 years ago are demanding a new war, this one with Iran,” he said. “The president, to his great credit, appears to be skeptical of this — very skeptical.”
We have come to the point at which pretty much the only thing standing between America and a new war is a prime time conservative talk show host. Watch the key Tucker broadcast here. It’s important: