Donald Trump on Sunday said that he would bring back the Bush-era practice of waterboarding in response to a question about enhanced interrogation tactics, saying in relation to ISIS, “I think waterboarding is peanuts compared to what they do to us.”
The Republican candidate seemed to legitimize the use of torture adding, “they don’t use waterboarding over there. They use chopping people’s heads off, they use drowning.”
A 2014 report by the Senate Intelligence Committee found that waterboarding and other similar tactics used by the CIA were ineffective and at “no time did the CIA’s coercive interrogation techniques lead to the collection of imminent threat intelligence.”
Trump also sought to clarify his comments on using a database to track Muslims in America for the second straight day.
The candidate has been in a back and forth with reporters beginning with a Yahoo! News interview published last Thursday in which Trump suggested the US would need to take extraordinary measures to monitor Muslims after the Paris attacks. In a followup conversation with NBC News, Trump admitted that such measures would include a Muslim database.
In that same ABC News interview, Trump said he would not rule out the use of a database. “I want [a] database for the refugees if they come into the country. We have no idea who these people are.” Trump also said, “We don’t know if they’re ISIS, we don’t know if it’s a Trojan Horse.”
“We have no idea who’s being sent in here. This could be the - it’s probably not - but it could be the great [sic] Trojan Horse of all time,” Trump said.
In the most recent polling available, voters say they trust Trump over every other Republican running for president when it comes to terrorism.
Trump also made statements on Sunday similar to ones he made last week about the need to surveil mosques in America. On Sunday he said there are certain mosques “everyone knows” are hot spots that he would want to monitor. “And let me tell you,” Trump said, “the people who aren’t involved in those mosques - they know who the bad ones are… but they don’t talk.”
Speaking on “This Week With George Stephanopoulos,” Trump noted that when he sees lines of refugees, he only sees “strong, very powerful” men and very few women and and children. Trump then added, “There’s something strange going on.”
The GOP front-runner argued America has to be vigilant saying “database would be fine for them and watch list is fine - we have to watch and see what we’re doing.”
He concluded his thought by saying Syrian refugees “should not come in, by the way. They should not be allowed in.” Stephanopoulos responded by telling Trump statistics show most of the refugees are in fact women and children.