Trump delivers commencement at Naval Academy, declares ‘America is back’

Posted on: May 25th, 2018 by ABC News No Comments

Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images(ANNAPOLIS, Md.) — President Trump delivered a commencement address at the Naval Academy in Annapolis, Maryland Friday, declaring to the graduating class that “America is back” and “respected again” on the international stage.

“We are witnessing the great reawakening of the American Spirit and of American might. We have rediscovered our identity, regained our stride and we’re proud again,” Trump said. “Our country has regained the respect that we used to have long ago abroad, yes they’re respecting us again, yes, America is back.”

The president’s commencement address comes a day after the president cancelled a planned summit with North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un, which had been scheduled to take place in Singapore on June 12th, saying it would be “inappropriate” to move forward with the meeting given the “tremendous anger and open hostility” expressed in a previous statement from North Korea that threatened the possibility of nuclear showdown and disparaged Vice President Mike Pence as a “political dummy.”

The president told the graduates that his interest in building up the military is as a means to prevent war but also told the graduates that “victory, winning, beautiful words” would be the only option in the event of inevitable conflict.

“The best way to prevent war is to be fully prepared for war, and hopefully we never have to use all of this beautiful new powerful equipment but you know you’re less likely to have to use it if you have it,” Trump said. “And if a fight must come there is no other alternative: Victory, winning, beautiful words, but that’s what it’s all about.”

As he drew near to the end of his remarks, the president pointed out that he was given the option to leave the commencement ceremony after delivering his speech, or to stay for just the top awardees, or stay to shake the hands of each graduate.

“What should I do? What should I do?” the president asked rhetorically, canvassing the audience.

“I’ll stay, I’ll stay,” the president said, responding to the applause from the audience.

At one point, the president made a vague reference to the Naval Academy’s winning streak in the annual Army-Navy matchup, saying he didn’t want to mention who won the game, but applauding the school’s record of “winning.”

“Let me take a guess you’re still not tired of winning. Winning is such a great feeling, isn’t it a great feeling? Winning, a great feeling, nothing like winning, gotta win,” Trump said.

In closing his remarks, the president applauded the graduates for their service to country and their skill as warriors.

“You are warriors, you are champions, and you will lead us only to victory,” Trump told the graduates. “Anchors away!”

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