No need to waterboard Donald Trump to break him.
Simply muss his hair.
Do that and The Donald would surely become undone.
Just look at how intricately he arranges his dyed locks: over, under, around, back, smooth, and spray.
And remember how he reacted when he was posing for Time magazine with an American bald eagle that suddenly disturbed his ’do.
“How’s my hair look?” an alarmed Trump asked.
Keep that in mind when he calls somebody a pussy.
Mr. Tough guy, ever a muss away from total kerfuffle.
And to think this is somebody who said that Sen. John McCain was not a war hero.
Trump would have balked at donning a flight helmet over that hair, much less continuing with his mission as McCain did that day in 1967 even after the warning system in his A-4E Skyhawk signaled that he had been targeted by enemy radar.
McCain maintained his dive toward a North Vietnamese power plant, peeling away only after he had dropped his bombs, too late to evade an anti-aircraft missile.
He managed to eject, but broke both arms and a leg so badly he was unable to swim when he chanced to parachute into a lake. He likely would have drowned had he not managed to get his teeth on the release for his life vest.
McCain was pulled ashore only to be battered and bayoneted by a crowd of Vietnamese. He was then taken to a prison nicknamed the Hanoi Hilton, where beatings accompanied the interrogations.
After a year, his captors learned that he was the son of a prominent admiral. He was offered immediate release as part of an apparent enemy plan to undercut the morale of prisoners without such connections. He refused, saying that all Americans captured before him had to be freed first.
His captors went from brutal to savage as he spent another four years in captivity, half of it in solitary. He eventually told the interrogators his ship and his squadron. He was pressed under torture to identify his fellow pilots. He gave them the names of the offensive line of the Green Bay Packers.
But in Trump’s view, McCain was no hero, even though his hair must have been just a total mess the whole five years.
Trump spent those same years continuing a long family tradition of avoiding military service. Trump’s paternal grandfather tried to return to his native Germany after a time in America and then Canada, but reportedly was deported from his own country for having departed just as he reached draft age and having come back just after he aged out. Trump’s father had spent World War II cashing in by building federally subsidized housing for the families of those who served.
Trump himself managed to avoid the draft during the period McCain was being tortured. His older kids have continued in the Trump way, refraining from serving in our longest and continuing war.
That did not stop his son, Eric, from offering an opinion that waterboarding is really no more serious than frat hazing. Eric said this after his dad called for bringing back waterboarding “and a lot worse.”
The elder Trump’s declaration prompted a statement from McCain, who has long held the position that Americans should not engage in torture for moral, legal, and practical reasons.
McCain began, “Given the loose talk on the campaign trail about reviving waterboarding and other inhumane interrogation techniques, it is important to remember the facts: that these forms of torture not only failed their purpose to secure actionable intelligence to prevent further attacks on the U.S. and our allies, but compromised our values, stained our national honor, and did little practical good. It is also important to remember that our nation has tried, convicted, and executed foreign combatants who employed methods of torture, including waterboarding, against American prisoners of war.”
McCain was speaking of Japanese war criminals who had been convicted after World War II of subjecting Americans to what was then called “the water cure.” We ourselves went on to do the same.
“As I have said before, our nation should never have employed such practices in the past, and we should never permit them in the future,” McCain continued.
He noted that the U.S. Senate had just passed legislation that banned the use of torture, limiting interrogation techniques to those in the U.S. Army Field Manual, which holds torture and cruel treatment to be ineffective. The vote had been 91-3. The agencies that had spoken in support of the measure included the FBI and the CIA.
“As Americans of conscience we must remember that in the war on terrorism, we are fighting not only to defend our security, but for an idea that all men are endowed by their creator with inalienable rights,” McCain said. “How much safer the world would be if all nations believed the same. How much more dangerous it can become when we forget it ourselves even momentarily, as we learned in the aftermath of Abu Ghraib.”
He concluded, “Our nation needs a commander in chief who will make clear to those that fight on our behalf that they are defending this sacred ideal, and that sacrificing our respect for human dignity will make it harder, not easier, to prevail in this war.”
On the day of the 9/11 attacks, the terrorists were not just intent on killing as many innocents as they could. They were also seeking to provoke us into responding in ways that make us less than who we really are.
Yet, in the moments after the planes hit the Twin Towers, we instead responded with what was best in us. We were united as never before. And it seemed the whole world was with us. America had never seemed greater.
But our subsequent grief and anger drove us to become so unlike ourselves that we engaged in torture.
We were responding exactly how our enemies wanted us to respond.
How delighted they must have been as we seemed to forget our greatness.
Now, just as we are recovering a sense of ourselves, along comes Trump with a promise to “Make America Great Again.”
Trump speaks with great passion about visiting Ground Zero after the attack. But, unless he made private donations not reflected by the records of his foundation, he offered no more than a pittance of his great wealth to help out in the aftermath.
The rest of the city was pitching in and The Donald was doing his hair.
That is bad enough without him playing into the terrorists’ hands and speaking just as they want us to speak.
Of course, he does it only because it works for him. Voters like easy answers and tough talk, even if it comes from a guy who could not take a good mussing.
With his yuge victory in New Hampshire, call him the Hair Apparent.