Watch CBS News

Is "Trump's world view" immune to foreign policy advice?

Trump scrutinized on foreign policy and advisers 03:37

Since at least September, Donald Trumphas been promising to release the names of who exactly he turns to for advice on foreign policy. While he dripped out several names over the last week, it's unclear how they're advising him now, or how they'd advise him if he were to win the White House, reports CBS News correspondent Julianna Goldman.

At the second Republican presidential debate last September, the GOP front-runner said what he lacked in foreign policy experience, he'd make up for with expert advisers.

Can Trump be blocked from reaching delegate threshold? 01:49

"I will have the finest team anyone has put together," he said. "I will know more about the problems of this world."

But asked repeatedly over the last six months, he declined to provide any names.

"I'm going to release a list in about two weeks. I think I know more about foreign policy than anybody running," Trump said in an interview with Fox News last February.

"I'm speaking with myself, number one, because I have a very good brain and I've said a lot of things," he said on "Morning Joe" earlier this month.

"We don't need to look to advisers to know what Donald Trump's world view is," said Tom Wright of the Brookings Institution. Wright said the billionaire businessman seems to have always been his own primary foreign policy consultant. "His main sort of world view is that America is getting ripped off by the world."

During a 1998 interview on the Oprah Winfrey Show, Trump said he was "tired of seeing the country ripped off."

"We let Japan come in and dump everything into our markets. They come over here, they sell their cars, their VCRs, they knock the hell out of our companies. And, hey, I have tremendous respect for the Japanese people," Trump said.

Foreign policy conservatives condemn Donald Trump 06:05

When Trump finally identified some advisers last week, the list of low-profile names was panned by the GOP foreign policy community. Many in the group are former military officers, including Maj. Gen. Gary L. Harrell, a former commander from the infamous Black Hawk Down Mission in Somalia.

One of the advisers, Joseph E. Schmitz, resigned from the Pentagon in 2005 amid allegations of misconduct, and later worked for the parent company of controversial security firm, Blackwater.

Some have been turned off by Trump's repeated calls to use torture as an interrogation tactic and vows to go even "tougher than waterboarding."

"We're going to go by the laws, but I want to see if I can expand those laws and make them more severe. We have to," Trump said during a rally in North Carolina.

"Torture works... Believe me, it works, okay? And waterboarding is your minor form," he said in South Carolina.

Trump adviser Walid Phares, an analyst for Fox News and an adviser to Mitt Romney's 2012 campaign, chalked that up to campaign rhetoric.

Donald Trump on torture: “I will always abide by the law” 05:49

"There's a very big difference between being a candidate and then getting to the White House," he said on Fox News.

But ultimately, Trump will have the final say.

"It doesn't mean that I'm going to use what they're saying, but I do like different opinions," Trump said in Washington DC this month.

In an interview with the New York Times, Trump said he's developed his policy views largely from reading newspapers.

Trump didn't answer when he was asked if he's met with his foreign policy team. A campaign spokesperson said he met with some advisers last week.

View CBS News In
CBS News App Open
Chrome Safari Continue
Be the first to know
Get browser notifications for breaking news, live events, and exclusive reporting.