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The Hornet

Serving the Fullerton Community Since 1922

The Hornet

General David Petraeus tackles tough foreign affairs questions at Nixon Library

Four-star General David Petraeus joined the World Affairs Council of Orange County in the Presidential Hall of the Richard Nixon library to answer questions regarding Trump’s policies Tuesday night.

Although the event was hosted by the Richard Nixon Library, it was sponsored by the World Affairs Council of Orange County. As a fundraising tool, they invite prominent speakers from around the world to speak to their members.

VIP members got a chance to meet with the General before dinner where he shared his admiration for President Nixon saying he finds his story of strength and resilience very inspiring.

VIP members of the World Affairs Council of OC got a chance to mingle in a private room in the Nixon library before General David Petraeus arrived on Tuesday night. Photo credit: Madalyn Amato

Afterwards, dinner was served upstairs and the General took to the stage to begin the event.

“Assessment of President Trump’s Emerging ‘America First’ Foreign and Economic Policies” was the theme for the evening.

Being a former CIA director and leader of armed forces in the war on terror, the General is no stranger to tough foreign policy questions.

He was joined on stage by ABC correspondent Elex Michaelson, who asked questions about the logistics of conflict with North Korea, Russia and Syria.

ABC Eyewitness news correspondent Elex Michaelson joined General David Petraeus on stage to ask him about what he thought about Trump's foreign policies Tuesday night. Photo credit: Madalyn Amato

Overall, Petraeus seemed very supportive of Trump’s initiatives, despite the two not seeing eye to eye on foreign policy initiatives, resulting in Petraeus’s consideration for National Security Advisor.

The General stated that he supports the increase in advisors and troops in the Middle East, however, he did caution that “not every solution is a nail or a bigger hammer,” and urged for “diplomacy and sanctions” to be the main focus of today’s policy.

Audience members were then allowed to ask questions of the general. Topics ranging from leadership recommendations to how to defeat ISIS were touched on by Petraeus, but the most audience reaction came from when he was asked “what keeps you up at night?”

Having served in the military for over 40 years, there isn’t much Petraeus hasn’t seen. The General did note, however, that his fears over a cyber attack, especially one carried out by radical terrorists, is what keeps him up at night; worried over what can and cannot be done following the blackout of an entire nation.

The evening concluded with a thanks of service members as well as for his service.

Executive Board Member for World Affairs Council OC, Souzan Baaj, said the event was a great success.