FACT CHECK: Trump’s Asia Trip Was A Failure
November 15, 2017
Trump returned home from Asia only to begin tweeting out numerous lies about his trip. And now he will hold a press conference where he will desperately try and claim his trip was a success. But the reality is that Trump accomplished nothing and his trip was a complete failure. See for yourself:
Ivanka Trump said Trump’s Asia trip was a success because other leaders were respectful to him.
Ivanka Trump: “I think that’s how the American president should be received. I think that all of the leadership across Asia showed tremendous respect to the president of the United States of America. And I think that’s something that is a positive. So I find it very difficult to find a negative.” [Fox & Friends, Fox News, 11/13/17]
Kellyanne Conway said Trump’s trip was a success because the media wasn’t covering it.
CONWAY: “I’ve always told the president, every time he returns from one of these trips that was a success, they once said to me, ‘how do you know that?’ I said because practically as soon as you touch down at Andrews Air Force Base and you return, the media stops covering the trip. That’s how you know it’s a success.” [Hannity Radio, 11/10/17]
Sarah Sanders cited Trump’s failed symbolic gesture to visit the DMZ as an accomplishment.
SANDERS: “Obviously, you guys saw how bad the fog was going in. There wasn’t enough visibility to land. It would have been really dangerous, and our guys pulled back. We waited as long as possible to try to go again, but the weather actually got worse. It’s important to note the historic nature of what this would have been, with President Moon meeting us. It still, I think, shows the strength of the alliance and the importance of it that they were going to do this together.”
Gorka said Trump’s Asia trip was successful because he called the North Korean regime evil while “standing just miles from the DMZ.”
GORKA: “Or whether it is standing just miles from the DMZ and talking about the evil that is the North Korean regime. Every trip is incredible and not interesting to the main stream media just as the domestic achievements are not of interest either.” [Hannity, Fox News, 11/10/17]
Trump And His Media Allies Agreed That His China Trip Was A Resounding Success Due To The Magnificent Red Carpet He Walked On When Getting Off The Plane
TRUMP: “The way they’ve treated us, the respect that Japan and China and South Korea, in particular—because we went there—have treated us has been really a great respect for the people of our country, the people of the United States. And we very much appreciate it, I will say that. It was red carpet like nobody, I think, has probably ever received.” [Trump Remarks Before Trilateral Meeting With Prime Minister Turnbull Of Australia And Prime Minister Abe Of Japan, Manila Philippines, 11/13/17]
GORKA: “Look, the whole trip is just one success after another. Look at the reception. Compare the reception President Trump received to the reception President Obama received. I mean, not only the visit to the Forbidden City, the adulation of the crowd, ‘The National Anthem’ being played by the Chinese army. It beats coming out of the back of Air Force One with no stairs and no red carpet.” [Lou Dobbs Tonight, Fox Business, 11/14/17]
Trump’s top accomplishments in Asia included being waved at with tiny flags, having an extravagant welcoming ceremony, and getting a cheeseburger with U.S. beef.
Washington Times’ Curl: “Thousands in China flocked to see the American president, waving tiny U.S. flags and snapping pictures — even of his empty limousine. So wowed were the Chinese that its leaders invited Mr. Trump — a fierce critic of U.S.-Sino trade imbalances — to dine in a palace in Beijing’s Forbidden City, the first foreign leader bestowed such an honor in modern China.
Washington Times’ Curl: “And the leaders swooned. In Japan, Mr. Trump played golf with Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, who gave him a hat that said ‘Donald & Shinzo, make alliance even greater.’ The PM even served Mr. Trump a cheeseburger for lunch, made with U.S. beef.”
Fox News’ Mosher: “President Trump was honored with a particularly extravagant welcoming ceremony in Beijing. Chinese President Xi Jinping himself served as his tour guide on a visit to the Forbidden City.”
But the reality is that Trump’s Asia trip was a failure:
Trump’s Asia trip was nothing more than pageantry.
USA Today: “Trump Hails ‘Tremendously Successful’ Asia Trip; Analysts Not So Sure”
Washington Post: “Presidential trips abroad are often more about pageantry and rhetoric than substantive policymaking, but President Trump’s long tour of Asia is looking particularly lightweight.”
CNN: “Yet his grand welcome into foreign capitals, where flattery is a central piece of the pomp and pageantry that follows him, has done little to answer the question of what his travels have actually delivered for the United States.”
BBC: “Donald Trump's Asia tour leaves observers perplexed.”
Bloomberg: “But he’ll return home to Washington without having secured a major new order for American defense contractors.”
Politico: “And yet, as he flies home to Washington, former diplomats and Asia experts were talking about how China came out ahead – and they noted he is returning to Washington largely empty-handed.”
Trump made no tangible progress on North Korea.
Bloomberg: “Trump also struggled to gain traction on North Korea, leaving Beijing without any new public assurances from China about measures that would exceed the financial punishments mandated by the United States.”
USA Today: “Trump said hundreds of billions in new deals had been reached and he spoke about the ‘many good friends’ he made, but he offered no details on efforts to curtail North Korea’s nuclear weapons development, a major focus of the trip.”
Trump ignored major human rights concerns.
Washington Post: “From Burma To The Philippines, Trump Largely Ignores Human Rights On Asia Trip”
BBC: “From the account of his spokesman, the topic of human rights was not raised at all by Mr Trump – and it was mentioned in their joint statement in such a vague way as to be meaningless. The same happened in China and Vietnam, two countries where dissidents are routinely harassed, arrested and given long prison sentences.”
Associated Press: “Trump Talks Of ‘Great Relationship’ With Duterte, Avoids Subject Of Human Rights”
Financial Times: “Donald Trump hailed his ‘great relationship’ with Rodrigo Duterte on Monday, declining to condemn his Philippine counterpart’s violent crackdown on drug trafficking during their first bilateral talks.”
Trump further alienated our Asian allies.
Washington Post: “Trump’s Incoherent Message To America’s Allies In Asia”
New York Times: “President Trump vowed this week to reclaim America’s role as a Pacific power. But as he wrapped up a marathon tour of Asia on Tuesday, Mr. Trump’s mixed messages left allies unsure of America’s staying power and fed a growing sense that China, not the United States, drives the agenda in the region.”
The Guardian: “Trump Sticks To The Script On Asia Tour – But Still Leaves Confusion In His Wake.”
Washington Post: “Trump’s ‘America First’ Looks More And More Like ‘America Alone’”