Top commander rejects Trump talk of using nukes against ISIS

Top commander rejects Trump talk of using nukes against ISIS
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A top commander in the war against the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS) is dismissing Donald TrumpDonald TrumpJan. 6 panel faces double-edged sword with Alex Jones, Roger Stone Trump goes after Woodward, Costa over China Republicans seem set to win the midterms — unless they defeat themselves MORE's suggestion that nuclear weapons could be used against the terrorist group.

"The simple answer is no," said British Maj. Gen. Doug Chalmers, a deputy commander of the coalition's task force, during a Pentagon press conference.


Trump on Wednesday said he would consider using a nuclear weapon against ISIS if it attacked the U.S.

"Somebody hits us within ISIS, you wouldn't fight back with a nuke?" the GOP presidential front-runner asked during an MSNBC town hall. 

Chalmers said he has not heard any of the members of the U.S.-led coalition discuss that option. 

"That's a conversation, frankly ... I've never heard discussed amongst any of our coalition members at any stage. I have to admit, that one has taken me completely by surprise." 

U.S. military commanders have touted the use of precision bombs in the war against ISIS, in order to avoid civilian casualties in the heavily populated areas where ISIS is also present. The group has a strong hold in Iraq and Syria, as well as safe havens in Afghanistan and Libya. 

Republicans have complained about the administration's restrictive rules of engagement, but Trump's suggestion he could employ a nuclear bomb against ISIS goes further than any critic of the current strategy. 

Sen. Ted CruzRafael (Ted) Edward CruzGOP holds on Biden nominees set back gains for women in top positions Advocates see pilot program to address inequalities from highways as crucial first step Ted Cruz ribs Newsom over vacation in Mexico: 'Cancun is much nicer than Cabo' MORE (R-Texas), another presidential candidate, called for "carpet-bombing" ISIS but said he would only target the group and avoid cities where civilians lived. Military commanders have also dismissed that idea

Chalmers also responded to a question about Trump's claim that the Geneva Conventions made soldiers "afraid to fight," in fear of violating it. 

The Geneva Conventions outlaw torture, which Trump has said he would allow to extract information from suspected terrorists. 

"I've never heard of — of soldiers afraid to fight because of the Geneva Convention in that regard," Chalmers said. 

"We regard it very much as a sense of basic principles which guide our behavior in battle and very much enable us to deal with, which is a very unusual human experience," he said. 

"And to live within those rules, I think, is good for both our soldiers and, indeed, the very population that we fight on behalf of."