“It’s a great honor to be nominated, and I know it has tremendous significance,” Trump told Fox News Radio White House correspondent Jon Decker. “I just think it’s a great thing for our country. It shows that we’re trying to make peace, not war all the time.”
Trump’s nomination for the Peace Prize was submitted by Christian Tybring-Gjedde, a member of the Norwegian Parliament who lauded the president’s role in brokering a peace agreement between Israel and the United Arab Emirates (UAE).
According to Trump, the so-called Abraham Accord is just the start of a broader U.S. effort to resolve protracted conflicts worldwide.
“We’re working on a peace deal in Afghanistan, working directly with the Taliban, and that’s going along pretty well .. we’ll probably know about that fairly soon,” the president said. “So we’re looking to create a lot of peace around the world because the world has other problems that we have to focus on.”
Tybring-Gjedde, in his nomination letter to the Nobel Committee, said the Trump administration “has done more trying to create peace between nations than most other Peace Prize nominees.” But as Decker observed, not everyone would characterize Trump as a peacemaker.
Former Defense Secretary Jim Mattis recently described Trump as “the first president in my lifetime who does not try to unite the American people. Instead, he tries to divide us.”
“I think sometimes you have to break up the eggs to make the omelet,” Trump responded.
“Sometimes you do have to go in and rough it up…and then all of a sudden you come out with something that could be very beautiful.”
“Sometimes you do have to go in and rough it up and mix it up, so to speak. And then all of a sudden you come out with something that could be very beautiful.”
The president claimed that his predecessors had failed on the peacemaking front because, as he put it, ” we never had the talent to get there and to negotiate these deals.
“And I will tell you that other countries from the Middle East are dying to come in. They are, they want to come in so badly,” Trump went on. “We’re going to start piecing it all together like a beautiful puzzle.
“It’s been a very complex puzzle for a lot of people. But I understood it and I do understand that they want peace. They’ve been fighting for decades and decades and they’ve been fighting for centuries in some cases. And they would like to see peace and it’s going to happen.”
Turning to the announcement Wednesday that 2,200 U.S. troops would leave Iraq by the end of this month, Trump said that the American military is “at a stage now where we can go back very quickly. If something happens, we can be back very quickly.
“This is a different age, militarily,” the president said. “We’ve just spent $2.5 trillion on military equipment and other things having to do with our military … We’ve never had more modern equipment, and today it’s equipment that’s much different than it was even 10 years ago, even five years ago. And we don’t necessarily have to be there.”
However, Trump added, the leaders of Afghanistan and Iraq “have an understanding and they’ve all been told that if anything happens, we can be back so fast with a power that’s far greater than we have right now.”
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