Speaking to assembled military who gave rousing cheers at the headquarters of the Army’s Central Command at Tampa, President Donald Trump vowed today to permit only those people who "want to love our country" into the United States. Thus he defended his proposed restrictions on immigration and refugees during his first visit to U.S. Central Command. The president voiced his support for NATO, while also speaking to the need to bolster national security. He did not mention the legal case now before a federal appeals court in San Francisco that refused to lift a suspension imposed by a lower court on his executive order that restricted immigration from seven Muslim majority countries and temporarily suspended refugees worldwide.
 
"We need strong programs," said Trump, so that "people that love us and want to love our country and will end up loving our country are allowed in" and those who "want to destroy us and destroy our country" are barred. "Freedom, security and justice will prevail," Trump said. "We will defeat radical Islamic terrorism and we will not allow it to take root in our country. We're not going to allow it." At the beginning of his remarks, he promised air planes and equipment to the military.
 
After saying "we strongly support NATO," Trump said he spoke with NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg on February 4. According to the White House, Trump and Stoltenberg “discussed how to encourage all NATO allies to meet their defense spending commitments." They also consulted about the continuing crisis in Ukraine and other challenges. In his remarks, Trump said that some NATO allies are not kicking in their "fair share" into funding NATO.
 
Trump had lunch with the troops at CENTCOM, which is also home to U.S. Special Operations Command there at Fort MacDill, before flying to Washington. He consulted with commanders of CENTCOM and SOCOM. The chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Gen. Joseph Dunford and National Security Adviser Michael Flynn also attended. Paying tribute to the military, Trump said, "We protect those who protect us, and we will never ever let you down," he said.



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Spero News editor Martin Barillas is a former US diplomat, who also worked as a democracy advocate and election observer in Latin America. His first novel 'Shaken Earth', is available at Amazon.

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