Diplomatic Dunce Leads from Behind
I hate war, but as a moderate Democrat I know there are times when the big muscle of the American military must be used to deter the damage that insurgents, religious zealots and despots can wage on the world. As a student of history, I admire the brilliance of President Truman’s Marshall Plan. To recap, Truman saw the cost of war, in both human life and treasure, as unnecessary and curable. The simple act of giving aid in the form of goods and money to unstable areas of the world kept us out of war.
Our extremely transactional President misses the greater point about getting things in return for money. Peace is a moral priority and a monetary win-win. Trump must have missed that lesson in military school. Avoiding a war is sometimes the best a president can do. The Donald wants to pull out of war and military policing in places he decries as “shithole countries.” We give Pakistan a lot of money. According to Vox.com, “…since 2002, the US has given Pakistan over $14 billion in aid to combat terrorism and insurgents in the region. That money is meant to reimburse Pakistan for its ongoing efforts to defeat militant groups, and it forms part of the $33 billion in total help the US has given Pakistan over the same period.”
I would be remiss if I didn’t remind you that Pakistan aided Osama bin Laden for years, until we took him out – and I don’t mean on a date. How much should they get now? That a big question. Our current Commander in Chief thinks that pulling our troops out of Afghanistan and Iraq will please his base, but he offers no reckoning of how this will keep the world safer.
The Donald tries to con our semi-allies, like Saudi Arabia, to do the dirty work, when they too are probably asking, “Gee, what’s in it for us?” Trump even seemed proud of letting Turkey’s Erdoğan and Russia’s Putin take control of the problems in Syria. Some see removing the USA from all that “Middle East crap” as a good thing. One of the many lessons I learned from reading Ronan Farrow’s book, War on Peace: The End of Diplomacy and the Decline of American Influence was the need for diplomatic solutions in foreign affairs. Trump has zero knowledge and no care to learn anything about how diplomacy works. He appointed homophobic and xenophobic Mike Pompeo to the post of Secretary of State to shield him from troubling facts. TOTAL FAILURE.
The overarching realty of Donald Trump is that he’s a lazy son-of-a-bitch. He has no desire or ability to dig into details and get a full picture. When the Secretary of Defense tries to lay out the pros and cons of a military action, Trump sees it as an affront and fires him. When a top cyber-security head assured America that the national election had no widespread fraud and was, in fact, the safest election ever, Trump dismissed the guy on Twitter. This president is simply unwilling to accept any fact that hasn’t been pre-approved by his little brain or big mouth.
I wish Trump would have pulled out early, but not when it might have put our troops at risk and, equally important, become the motivation for more evil groups like ISIS. After the administration announced the new troop withdrawals, what happened? Well, Al Jazeera was the first to report: “Four rockets have struck inside a heavily fortified area in Baghdad housing foreign embassies including that of the United States, according to the Iraqi military, signaling an apparent end to a temporary halt in attacks by Iran-backed militias targeting Washington’s presence in the country.” You see, actions have consequences, and our soldiers and personnel are now in danger because of the DONALD’S BIG MOUTH.
People like Representative, a Republican from Illinois, speak the truth to power and tell it like it is. This guy isn’t a political hack; he’s the real deal. Adam served in the Air Force Special Operations Command, Air Combat Command, Air Mobility Command, and Wisconsin Air National Guard and currently holds a rank of Lieutenant Colonel. In 2019, Kinzinger was deployed to the US/Mexico border to help maintain border security. He’s the person more Republicans should recognize as an expert on matters of military and national security. Rand Paul and Ted Cruz have little to offer in this regard.
The biggest question we currently face is how much further damage will Donald John Trump do to America between now and January 20. If the members of his cabinet and the Republicans in Congress had any balls, they would get with VP Pence and enact the 25th Amendment to remove Trump from office and power NOW! But they won’t.
If you wonder why Congress has such a low approval rating, just listen to what Mitch McConnell says. According to a July 2020 Gallup poll, “Congress’ Approval Drops to 18%” Trump hovered around a 40% approval rating, and he lost the election by more than five million votes. Biden achieved, so far, a grand total of 79,513,695 votes, a substantial mandate and the most votes anyone has ever gotten in a US election.
I won’t rub salt in the wounds of our great insulter. Trump now seems to be wearing a thicker layer of makeup. A shrink might suggest that the increased slathering indicates a greater need for ego protection. The makeup is a metaphor for the fake amour of a fallen leader. It’s time for this orange clown to leave the battlefield.
COVID-19 has ruined Trump’s presidency but given all of us vision into his lack of concern for detail, his open, deceitful denials and the way his inept governance has killed Americans. Why is he even in power right now? Yes, I endorse a peaceful transfer of power, but that process must protect us from this lunatic. The leaders in Congress should step up, but they won’t. Selfish bitches.
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Gold, God, Guns & Goofballs: If you only read one chapter of this book, try “Take a Knee for America” and think about our never-ending conflicts between minorities and the police. I’m not asking you to take a stand but having a deep and honest conversation about why some people think the way they do would be productive. This is a book for the moment which seeks to start a conversation about peace. And if you are worried about social media, you really should check out the chapter called “Social Media Menace.”