TRUMP’S URBAN MYTH* ON “PERSHING’S PIG BLOOD BULLETS”
(+follow up on previous outrageous WATERBOARDING promises)
Donald Trump made some more incendiary remarks.
In a speech where he championed a harsh approach to counterterrorism — including methods that are deemed to violate the Geneva Convention [“Waterboarding&more”]–
Trump trotted out a supposed history lesson from the early 20th century.
He recounted an oft-told
urban legend about
U.S. Gen. John J. Pershing, who helped wage a counterinsurgency in the southern Philippines.
My colleagues Jenna Johnson and Jose DelReal detailed what Trump said:
As the crowd cheered him on, Trump told them about Pershing — “rough guy, rough guy” — who was fighting terrorism in the early 1900s.
Trump didn’t say where this happened,
but variations of this story online usually state that it happened in the Philippines during the Philippine-American War — part of the island nation’s protracted battle for independence — early in Pershing’s career.
“They were having terrorism problems, just like we do,” Trump said.
“And he caught 50 terrorists who did tremendous damage and killed many people. And he took the 50 terrorists, and he took 50 men and
he dipped 50 bullets in pigs’ blood — you heard that, right?
He took 50 bullets, and he dipped them in pigs’ blood.
And he had his men load his rifles, and he lined up the 50 people, and they
shot 49 of those people.
And the 50th person, he said: You go back to your people, and you tell them what happened. And for 25 years, there wasn’t a problem. Okay?
Twenty-five years, there wasn’t a problem.”
The implication here, as shocked critics immediately pointed out, is that such brutal, gratuitous, religiously offensive measures should be embraced in the current fight against jihadist groups such as the Islamic State. (Pigs and their associated pork products are deemed impure in Islam.)
Incidents in recent memory where U.S. soldiers allegedlydesecrated the corpsesof Islamist militants and set fire to copies of the Koran did little to dissuade would-be jihadists and quite a lot to embarrass officials in Washington.
[The better way to end Islamist insurgency]
*Moreover, the story is most likely NOT true.