Trump rages about Afghanistan

Sunday, August 27, 2017


Fariborz S. Fatemi                  
Former Professional Staff Member House Foreign Affairs Committee Senate Foreign Relations Committee

There he goes again, Trump, Putin’s “useful idiot.” Six months into his term, the investigation of his Russian connection to help him in his campaign and the financial obligation of him, his family and those around him, to the Russians, to the Saudi’s and Gulf States continue menacingly. 

 Six months into his term and fact checkers have concluded that Trump has lied on an average of five times a day.  Add to that the made up facts, figures and so-called accomplishments from him and his associates.

 Six months into his term, Trump has shown himself a shameless, self-serving snake oil salesman with no moral compass, demeaning his office, bereft of any of the values that for centuries have made America the envy of the world. Trump has shown his values equate with alt-right supremacy, racism, misogyny and bigotry. Nothing about these six months should be considered normal. And, Trump’s violation of the rule of law, rules of governance, the Constitution, and America’s democratic traditions, must not be allowed to become normal. It is not. As Paul Krugman, the Nobel Prize winner for economics and columnist for the New York Times, wrote recently, “An anti-American cabal, hostile to everything we stand for, determined to undermine everything that truly makes this country, has seized power in Washington.”

 Six months into his term, and the swamp Trump vowed to drain, roiled, gurgled and swallowed him. Trump who knows nothing, does not know he knows nothing and does not care, did not know the swamp is the Republican Party he allied himself with.  The same Republicans who thought they could ride him to power and then control him. The likes of McConnell and Ryan in the Congress and their Tea Party, Freedom Caucus and right-wing think tanks, media and the alt-right eco-chamber aided and abetted by Russian bots spreading fake news.

This is the Congress that for eight years of President Obama’s term opposed everything that President Obama tried to do to help the US move forward domestically and internationally.  Despite that intense opposition, President Obama was able to succeed. And this, more than anything else, continues to enrage Trump. Now the Republicans in full control have no clue as to how to pass legislation, as Trump has no clue as to how to govern. As his poll numbers drop to the lowest in the history of polling and 60 per cent of the country thinks he is dishonest, Trump tweets madly as a substitute for policy and governance.  

 Further, Trump did not know that the swamp is the “deep state” that he and his acolytes rant about.  That swamp is filled with dark money from the superrich like the Koch brothers, Sheldon Adelson, Robert Mercer and his daughter, to name a few, plus the assorted Saudi, Gulf States and Russians who have bankrolled him and his family and associates.  And every day, it becomes more and more evident that he and his associates are beholden to them and subject to their blackmail.

In the meantime, America faces a clear and present danger to its national security. Personnel charged with protecting U.S. national security keep asking, were Flynn, Bannon, Gorka, Miller, and others vetted? How did they get security and White House clearances with such sordid backgrounds and what access have they been given.  Pence was head of transition. Is he that incompetent or just complicit in putting the aforementioned in the White House.  In the six months, what secrets have been given away?

Six months into his term, Trump rages about Afghanistan. Remember he said he knew what to do?  A country he would not be able to locate without the reported maps and charts he is presented, since he does not like to read. Trump knows nothing of Afghan history or how and why the US has been involved since 1979. First to support the Mujahidin to defeat the Russian invasion and then after 9/11 to defeat the Taliban. Yet the one country that could help the US, as it did after 9/11, Iran, Trump alienates.  Instead, Trump cultivates Saudi Arabia, the same country that is bankrolling elements of the Taliban in Afghanistan and Lashkar’s in Pakistan, the source of most horrendous terrorism in the region. How very sad.

Commentary, Financial Times. August 16, 2017


More By Fariborz S. Fatemi
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*These views represent those of the author and are not necessarily Iran Review's viewpoints.

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