James Mattis, President Trump, United States discussed on The Lead with Jake Tapper

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Ziprecruiter, the smartest way to hire. While visiting the US Mexico border today Defense Secretary, Jim Mattis, urged servicemembers to ignore the news and stay focused on their mission. But it is difficult to escape the growing questions about their mission, including were they sent to the border for purely political reasons and since the election, what happened to all of President Trump's urgent warnings about a migrant caravan invasion. He hasn't tweeted the word caravan since the midterms compared to forty five mentions in the three weeks before election day. Let's bring in Barbara Starr at the Pentagon Barbara in the weeks before the election, the president painted a stark picture, he sent thousands of potentially armed troops to the border kind of suggesting he was doing. So to fend off an invasion of dangerous migrants. What's actually going on on the ground down there? Well, what's coming on on the ground today where the secretary of defense was not a migrant to be seen no price tag attached to this mission? And jay. That's just the beginning of some of the questions. Defense Secretary James Mattis checking up on the troops at the bare bones military camp on the Texas border with Mexico. Fifty nine hundred troops deployed to help stop caravans migrants. Still hundreds of miles from the US Mexico border, which President Trump has warned about you look at what's marching up. That's an invasion. That's not that's an invasion, but on the ground. The reality is different Mattis reiterating, the military will not be confronting the migrants. If he defended the mission feel moral of ethical mission toward our mortar patrolman thirteen hundred of those troops in Texas, largely tasked with putting concertina wire without weapons in hand part of their orders to barricade the Texas border where migrants coming north may try to cross the troop doing that. Obviously are not armed. They don't need their weapons. The engineer delayed the part wire the soldiers marines doing net or what? Overwatch by MP's who are armed Mattis will aware of the political firestorm surrounding the deployment now telling American forces to ignore the news media, they're all sorts of stuff in the news that sort of thing you discount paid on what your company commander. You're tying commander killed. If you read all that stuff. But the question of President Trump's political motivation for sending troops is not going away. From October sixteenth to November, six midterm election day, forty five tweets mentioning the border, but since then zero I think that strengthens the argument by those who believe that this was a politically motivated mission in the first place for summer moment. Madison fisting there is precedent for forces on the border actually, citing punch via the famed Mexican revolutionary leader. I think many of you where the printed Wilson a hundred years ago a little over one hundred years ago, deployed the US stormy to the southwest border. That's over a century ago. The threat thin, which punctual Via's troop a revolutionary rating across the border into the United States, New Mexico. Nineteen sixty the difference being punch Avia led a group of revolutionaries. With guns while the current group of migrants includes men women and children who are mostly escaping violence in their own countries. One shoulder asked Mattis at they're all going to have to go back and pick up all that concertina wire they late. He did not have an answer for that. There is no answer. How many troops have any will make it home for thanksgiving? But the secretary of defense talking about punch Avia an incident on that border back in one thousand nine hundred sixteen Jake, all right? Barbara Starr at the Pentagon. Thanks so much take a listen again to something secretary Mattis said today about the mission. We were asked why the Fikri Terry due to the number of coming this way, defend them. Whether that means it means that people do all the worst. We're standing behind a confidence builder. And that sort of thing. So the department of homeland security's in charge and the customs and border patrol and presumably other agencies are there, providing the security and the troops. Are there is a confidence builder? What does it? Yeah. I didn't know that. That's what American troops. Did. I fought, you know. And if you listen to what the president was saying, he was saying this was an invasion, and they would be there men be armed and presumably he said that they would be shooting on some of these folks if they threw walks, I, you know, I not a military person..

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