Sunday, Sept. 22, 2019 | 2 a.m.
The Sun’s editorial on Donald Trump’s response to the Saudi Arabia oil attacks ( “Irresponsible ‘locked and loaded’ tweet leaves few options for Trump,” Sept. 18) called President Donald Trump’s “locked and loaded” comment “a red line.” It’s not.
It’s one of the president’s go-to “Trumpisms.” He’s used them at least three times in tweets/trash talk with foreign opponents over their ill-founded deeds: North Korea and Kim Jung Un in August 2017, Syria in 2018, and just recently for Iran’s aerial attacks on Saudi Arabian oil installations. My memory may be understating it.
Red line is a phrase used to mean a figurative point of no return or a limit past which safety can no longer be guaranteed.
President Trump, I presume, plagiarized this “Trumpism” from Hollywood actors. The president is not the first. The military branches traditionally use a variation — lock and load — on the firing ranges. It’s an oxymoron — should be “loaded and locked” but it has morphed with time.
Most foreign leaders don’t have the esotericism in American culture and language to know what Trump’s “tweets” really mean.