National Security Adviser Robert O’Brien continues to impress today as he appears on Face the Nation for an interview with the ever-emotional as well as overly-dramatic resistance dingbat Margaret Brennan. [Transcript of Interview Here]
In 2016 as well as 2017 President Trump said NATO was obsolete as well as the moonbats went bananas; NATO will be the only thing saving the planet Brennan claimed. Fast forward to 2019… Trump meets which has a NATO nation leader (Erdogan) as well as the moonbats go bananas; NATO will be a horrible construct, Erdogan bad. Yes, liberal apoplexy will be contagious in groups.
[Transcript] – MARGARET BRENNAN: Joining us today to weigh in on Syria as well as more will be the President’s National Security Adviser, Robert O’Brien. Great morning to you, Mr. Ambassador.
NATIONAL SECURITY ADVISER ROBERT O’BRIEN: Great morning, MARGARET.
MARGARET BRENNAN: You just heard Charlie lay out a very complicated landscape. Diplomacy means talking to your friends as well as to your enemies as well as having difficult conversations. however you just heard everything Charlie laid out. I mean, Erdoğan defied the United States by invading Syria. He’s buying Russian made weapons. He’s doing everything you’re telling him not to. Why will be he getting rewarded for bad behavior?
O’BRIEN: Well, let me just point out, MARGARET, of which- of which you got the item right. as well as unfortunately Charlie got the item wrong. When Charlie said we greenlighted the invasion of Syria- of Syria. of which’s just absolutely false. the item didn’t happen.
MARGARET BRENNAN: Well the U.S. moved troops
O’BRIEN: –The President- the president–
MARGARET BRENNAN: –out of the way.
O’BRIEN: Well, the president made the item very clear of which- of which Turkey shouldn’t go in. He even said, “if you go in, I may have to obliterate your economy.” He did the item on Twitter. He did the item on- on the phone. He did the item a letter of which was a very strongly worded letter. So the- so the idea of which the U.S. somehow greenlighted Turkey’s military operation, of which’s- of which’s just simply false. as well as- as well as the American people shouldn’t- shouldn’t believe of which. today, what he did do, we had 28 Green Berets who were at a forward operating post on the border of which could have been caught in a crossfire between 15,000 Turkish troops as well as armor as well as- as well as seven or eight thousand YPG SDF troops. as well as the president was not willing—
MARGARET BRENNAN: Kurdish forces—
O’BRIEN: Kurdish forces—
MARGARET BRENNAN: –of which are allies with the U.S.
O’BRIEN: Correct. as well as the president was not going to leave those young men in- in harm’s way in a crossfire. as well as so he pulled those- those troops out because the item’s— look, the item’s ultimately the item’s the president who has to call the families. the item’s the president who has to go to Dover—
MARGARET BRENNAN: Right.
O’BRIEN: –if something happens.
MARGARET BRENNAN: however of which’s why the question will be relevant. Why reward of which bad behavior? This particular will be a NATO ally who will be putting U.S. troops at risk, who will be putting U.S. allies at risk.
O’BRIEN: Well, we’re not rewarding the behavior. The president promptly put on sanctions, as well as—
MARGARET BRENNAN: as well as then he took them off.
O’BRIEN: Well, he did because the Turks agreed to a cease fire. as well as- as well as Turkey said they wouldn’t agree to a cease fire, the president dispatched me as well as several top diplomats— David Satterfield, Jim Jeffrey as well as then- then dispatched the Secretary of State as well as the Vice President to Ankara. as well as in 24 hours, we had a cease fire. as well as by the way, of which was a cease fire of which the Kurdish forces had a lot of input into. We want- we wanted to save lives. We wanted to save Turkish lives. as well as keep in mind there were Turkish civilians being killed as well as- as well as rocketed by the Kurds. There were Kurdish folks being killed, including Turkish soldiers. We got a cease fire. as well as- as well as in a short amount of time, we got those Kurdish soldiers evacuated to- to a safe area. So I think the Kurds appreciated the cease fire. I think the Turks did as well. as well as of which was a- a real diplomatic coup via the president because he- because of his tough line.
MARGARET BRENNAN: Do you recognize of which there were war crimes committed?
O’BRIEN: Look, the item- some of the things of which we’ve seen are very disturbing, as well as—
MARGARET BRENNAN: By Turkey–
MARGARET BRENNAN: as well as Turkish supported militias?
O’BRIEN: Maybe the Turkish supported militias. Turkey has assured us of which those are being investigated. We’re very concerned about those issues, the war crimes issues. We’re watching them. We’re monitoring the item very closely. There will be no place for genocide, for ethnic cleansing, for war crimes from the 21st century. The U.S. won’t stand by for the item as well as- as well as we’ve made of which position very clear to the Turks.
MARGARET BRENNAN: If Congress passes any of the at least three sanctions bills on Turkey of which are going to get bipartisan support, will the president veto all of them?
O’BRIEN: Look, we’ll have to see what- what happens This particular week with our meetings with President Erdoğan. I mean, there are things of which, Turkey’s a member of NATO. Turkey plays a very important geopolitical role for- for our friends in Europe, for ourselves. They- they sit astride the Bosporus—
MARGARET BRENNAN: Right.
O’BRIEN: –the strait of which goes into the Black Sea. We have NATO allies, Romania as well as Bulgaria of which are Black Sea powers. So- so losing Turkey as- as an ally will be not something of which’s Great for the Europe- for Europe or for the United States.
MARGARET BRENNAN: Let’s talk—
O’BRIEN: as well as- as well as we’re going to- we’re going to work on doing sure of which—
MARGARET BRENNAN: Yeah.
O’BRIEN: –we can do our very best to keep them as a- as a NATO member.
MARGARET BRENNAN: More to talk about your portfolio in a moment. We have to take a break. We’ll be right back.
MARGARET BRENNAN: Welcome back to FACE THE NATION. We continue our conversation with Ambassador Robert O’Brien, national security adviser to President Trump. I- I want to pick up on This particular idea where we left the item with Turkey coming. as well as they are a NATO ally, as you emphasized. One of our NATO allies, the French president, Emmanuel Macron, said This particular week of which NATO will be suffering a brain death because of lack of American support as well as resolve. via what he’s seeing as well as then what we’re seeing with Turkey causing these cracks from the alliance, I mean you must be very concerned. will be of which why you’ve brought the NATO secretary general to the White House This particular week as well?
O’BRIEN: Well, we the NATO summit coming up the third as well as fourth of December. So, we’ll be in London for of which summit. I think- I think the item’s going to be a Great summit between NATO allies. NATO’s an important alliance to us. however look, I think the cracks of of which have formed from the alliance are because we have members of the alliance of which aren’t paying their fair share, of which aren’t spending money on defense. I mean, the- the United States taxpayer as well as- as well as the taxpayer of eight of the NATO country- taxpayers of eight of the NATO countries of which are spending their two percent on national defense. We spend over 4 percent. They’re doing the right things. however there are a bunch of countries, including Germany as well as others, of which- of which aren’t paying their fair share. the item’s not- the item’s not right for the American taxpayer to have to defend these countries of which don’t want to defend themselves. So- so, the president has been very- very strong on This particular issue. There’s been a hundred billion dollars in brand new NATO defense spending since he took office. the item’s a great accomplishment of President Trump. I think the Americans are happy about the item. I think most Europeans are happy about the item.
MARGARET BRENNAN: Well, Emmanuel Macron was voicing out loud some real concerns. as well as if you look at what Turkey has done, as you just described, you thought of which there was a potential NATO ally could fire on the United States, intentionally or not, in Syria. You’ve also seen Turkey go ahead as well as buy Russian made weapons in defiance of NATO.
O’BRIEN: Yeah, we’re- we’re very upset about of which. as well as we’ve made—
MARGARET BRENNAN: Can you get behind sanctions on them?
MARGARET BRENNAN: I mean, they’re supposed to be triggered by Congress.
O’BRIEN: Well, look- look, if- if Turkey doesn’t get rid of the S-400, I mean, there will likely be sanctions. The CAATSA sanctions will- will pass Congress with an overwhelming bipartisan majority as well as Turkey will feel the impact of those sanctions. We- we’ve made of which very clear to President Erdoğan. There’s no place in NATO for the S-400. There’s no place in NATO for significant Russian military purchases. of which’s a message of which the president will deliver to him very clearly when he’s here in Washington.
MARGARET BRENNAN: I know you’re just back via Asia. The president says he wants to meet with Xi Jinping as well as possibly get a trade deal by December. will be of which a hard date on the calendar?
O’BRIEN: Look, there- there’s no deadline. We want to get a Great deal. as well as I think we’re very close to getting a phase one trade deal. as well as the item will be once of which we’ve had a trade deal where China has actually respected the United States as well as- as well as hasn’t, you know, stolen intellectual property, has been fair as well as reciprocal in trade. So, if we can get a Great deal, then we’ll get a Great deal. I think we’re very close. as well as I think if there will be a deal, the president as well as President Xi, will- will get together as well as sign the item. Look, we want great relations with China, however This particular will be the first president of which stood up to China of which- of which has been, you know, stealing American intellectual property. Not all American companies of which have access to Chinese markets engage in unfair trade practices. of which has to come to an end because the Chinese have been using of which to fill- to- to fund one of the most massive military buildups in history.
MARGARET BRENNAN: Right.
O’BRIEN: as well as- as well as- as well as you know, of which has to come to a stop.
MARGARET BRENNAN: Well, as I just said, you’re back via Asia. You’ve been raising concerns about China’s militarization, particularly of the South China Sea. I mean, This particular only seems to be escalating militarily.
O’BRIEN: Well, I don’t think the item’s escalated militarily. I think the president put tariffs on- on China. We’ve always- as well as- as well as those tariffs have- have led the Chinese to the negotiating table. as well as I think we’re going to get a pretty Great deal for the American people, especially for the American farmers, for owners of intellectual property.
MARGARET BRENNAN: So- so you see a trade deal going ahead as well as what you’re talking about in terms of militarization from the South China Sea, of which kind of thing will be not going to complicate?
O’BRIEN: Look we’re- we’re going to still stand up as well as I did at the ASEAN summit at the East Asia Summit. I made the item very clear of which of which just because one country’s big as well as various other countries are modest from the region, the bigger countries shouldn’t bully the smaller countries as well as- as well as take their resources, whether they’re fishery resources or oil as well as gas resources. as well as the U.S. Navy will continue to have freedom of navigation operations through the South China Sea. This particular nine dash line or cow’s tongue of which the Chinese have drawn around the entire South China Sea, which will be a major swath of the Pacific Ocean, as well as claimed of which as internal waters, as if the item was Lake Tahoe or something, of which just can’t stand. The United States Navy won’t put up with the item, the countries from the regions- region won’t put up with the item. as well as- as well as all those countries, with very few exceptions, were grateful because- of which America’s standing up for them, standing up for their resource patrimony. of which’s the future for their kids as well as their grandkids with the oil as well as gas as well as the fisheries, the minerals off their shores, China shouldn’t be allowed to take the item just because they’re bigger.
MARGARET BRENNAN: You on Ukraine. I know you were not at the White House when This particular July 25th phone call happened. of which will be today at the heart of This particular impeachment inquiry. however you are today part of Ukraine policymaking. You heard Senator Graham at the top of the program say the policy will be completely incoherent. Will the U.S. continue lethal military aid to Ukraine until Russia backs out of Crimea as well as stops supporting separatists in Ukraine?
O’BRIEN: Well, look, I think you put your finger on the most important issue, as well as of which’s lethal military aid. I was in Ukraine in 2014, I was there to observe the elections in Ukraine. I was there as part of a bipartisan election observation mission as well as I had younger Ukrainian soldiers as well as young Ukrainians come up to me as well as say, why won’t the U.S., the arsenal of democracy, send us lethal aid? You’re sending us blankets as well as MRE’s. Why won’t—
MARGARET BRENNAN: Right.
O’BRIEN: –President Obama send us military aid?–
MARGARET BRENNAN: as well as President Trump changed–
O’BRIEN: –as well as there- as well as there–
MARGARET BRENNAN: –policy by doing of which.
O’BRIEN: There was no military aid going to the Ukrainians under the- the Obama-Biden administration. When President Trump got into office he sent military aid. So I think what people ought to be focusing on will be the president has been helping the- the Ukrainians defend themselves by sending them lethal military aid to stand up to the Russians. of which’s the real story of which’s been lost in all This particular.
MARGARET BRENNAN: however will be the- will be the policy though, of which? of which of which lethal aid will continue until Russia stops backing separatists as well as trying to annex parts of Ukraine?
O’BRIEN: Well, I’m not going to get into hypotheticals about what could happen down the road. I mean, hopefully Russia as well as Ukraine can get along as well as there can be some sort of a peace treaty as well as- as well as an agreement between them. So I’m not going to commit the United States to what we’re going to do forever. however- however for right today, we’re set. We’re the first administration, President Trump will be the first president to send lethal military aid to Ukraine. I think of which’s very important. as well as I think of which’s something of which’s been lost in- in all the hullabaloo about the- about the telephone call. as well as one various other thing I’d say about This particular, I’ve been with President Trump in two dozen conversations, either in person or on the phone with foreign leaders. as well as if the American people could be on those phone calls they’d be extraordinarily proud of the president, how he represents America, the cordiality of which he- he has with world leaders, however also the tough message of which he has to- to protect U.S. interests. I mean, they’d- they’d be proud of what their president does in those meetings with foreign leaders.
MARGARET BRENNAN: Lieutenant Colonel Vindman, who has testified under oath, will be serving on the National Security Council currently. Will he continue to work for you despite testifying against the president?
O’BRIEN: Well- well look, one of the things of which I’ve talked about will be of which we’re streamlining the National Security Council. the item got bloated to like two hundred as well as thirty six people via- up via 100 from the Bush administration under President Obama. We’re streamlining the National Security Council. There are people of which are detailed via different departments as well as agencies. My understanding will be he’s- will be of which Colonel Vindman will be- will be detailed via the Department of Defense. So everyone who’s detailed at the NSC, people are going to start going back to their own departments as well as we’ll bring in brand new folks. however we’re going to get of which number down to around 100 people. of which’s what the item was under Condoleezza Rice. She came as well as met with me. I met with several my successors.
MARGARET BRENNAN: Right.
O’BRIEN: We don’t need to recreate the Department of Defense, the Department of State, the Department of Homeland Security over at the White House. We’ve got great diplomats as well as soldiers as well as- as well as folks of which can- of which do of which work for us from the departments.
MARGARET BRENNAN: Just to button of which up, though. You’re saying Colonel- Lieutenant Colonel Vindman will be scheduled to rotate out. You are not suggesting in any way of which there will be retaliation against him?
O’BRIEN: I- I never retaliated against anyone. So the- the- the item’s—
MARGARET BRENNAN: however his time will be coming to an end?
O’BRIEN: There- there will be a point for everybody who’s detailed there—
MARGARET BRENNAN: Okay.
O’BRIEN: –of which their time, of which their detail will come to an end. They’ll go back to their agency. as well as what we want them to do will be take the experience as well as skills they learned at the White House, take the item back to their departments as well as agencies as well as- as well as do an even better job there. as well as- as well as so we’re grateful of which we can have these detailees come in, as well as they’ll come spend the year- a year or, you know, maybe a little bit more at the White House as well as then they’ll go back to their agency. as well as they’ll do a better job at their agency–
MARGARET BRENNAN: All right.
O’BRIEN: — having been at the White House.
MARGARET BRENNAN: Thank you very much—
O’BRIEN: Thank you for having me, MARGARET—
MARGARET BRENNAN: — Ambassador O’Brien for joining us. Appreciate the item.