Donald Trump Says He Would 'Absolutely' Bring Back Waterboarding
Donald Trump has declared he would "absolutely" bring back waterboarding as an acceptable form of interrogation.
The Republican frontrunner for president characterized the controversial technique as “strong interrogation” that pales in comparison to what ISIS does to its captives during an interview on ABC's This Week.
“I think waterboarding is peanuts compared to what they do to us,” Trump told host George Stephanopoulos. “What they did to James Foley when they chopped off his head, that’s a whole different level and I would absolutely bring back interrogation and strong interrogation."
Trump's statement came after he said he would support a tracking system for Muslims in the U.S. and the surveillance of some mosques in the wake of recent militant attacks in Europe.
While Trump has, in recent days, attempted to distance himself from comments that seemed to support such a tracking system or database for Muslims, on Sunday he affirmed the position.
"I definitely want a database and other checks and balances. We want to go with watch lists. We want to go with databases," Trump said.
Trump also clarified that he wouldn't close mosques, but merely keep a watchful eye on them.
"I don’t want to close mosques; I want to surveil mosques. I want mosques surveiled. We were doing it New York City for a while until the worst mayor that New York City has ever had got elected," he said in reference to Mayor Bill de Blasio.
Trump said surveillance of New York mosques, which he believes ended under De Blasio, was revealing information that was useful for combatting terrorism.
"We were learning a lot. And they were stopping problems and potential problems by learning what was happening," Trump said, citing a "very good source."
Trump also addressed gun control and maintained that fewer people would have been injured in the Nov. 13 Paris attacks had the victims been armed.
"If those people in Paris had guns in that room, it would have been a shootout and very few people would have been hurt by comparison to the number that were hurt," he said.