I already viewed the upcoming NATO summit with trepidation when we learned of Trump’s abusive letters to other allied leaders. He should regard them as colleagues but he’s beyond such niceties. That’s why I call him the Insult Comedian.
There are innumerable alarming things about the Trump regime but one of the oddest is his attitude towards the European institutions that have kept the peace since the end of World War II: the EU and NATO. Many of Team Trump’s positions on issues such as taxes, abortion, SCOTUS, and the environment are boilerplate right-wing dogma, but their desire to cripple and/or destroy NATO is foreign to past Republican administrations. So is Trump’s position on trade but I’m not going there today. I don’t want a tariff slapped on me.
The Insult Comedian’s animus to international institutions seems based on personal quirks and a love of chaos and conflict. Why he loves chaos is beyond me but he does. That’s why I call him the Kaiser of Chaos. There’s also the much darker possibility that he’s been compromised by the Russians. There’s no direct *publicly* available proof as of now but there’s lots of circumstantial evidence from which inferences can be drawn. Holy legalese, Batman. The mere fact that he insists on meeting Putin alone is suspicious in and of itself. Dollars to donuts that the only translator will be provided by the Russian side.
This president* regards America as a victim put upon by everyone else in the world. He’s obsessed with payback and vengeance even when there’s nothing to avenge. Hence the protection racket he’s trying to run against our allies. I guess he learned it from his pals in the Gambino family.
Europe is teetering on the edge. It’s gone to a dark place eerily reminiscent of the 1930’s. In Hungary and Poland, nationalist governments are tightening the political screws on their opponents. It’s particularly tragic in Poland. The Poles taught the world how to resist communist tyranny, now they’re taking to the streets to protest their government’s efforts to destroy the independence of the courts. I hope they can work their magic again.
US foreign policy under Trump has gone from prizing stability above all else to stirring the pot everywhere. The Bush-Cheney administration did their share of pot stirring in the Middle East but even they realized that the European status quo was preferable to the mess of the interwar years of 1919-1939.
As someone with more than a passing knowledge of European history, I am alarmed by Team Trump’s European shit stirring. The politics of grievance is the key element to Trumpism *and* European ethno-nationalism. Opening the lid on venerable European grievances will not end well. It’s why some compare Trump, not to Hitler, but to Serbian strong man, ethnic cleanser, and war criminal Slobodan Milosevic.
The intensely personal nature of Trump’s foreign policy is characteristic of authoritarian governments. Policy, such as it is, is made on the fly and is based on presidential* whims and caprices. We learned recently that Trumpy wanted to invade Venezuela on a whim because he didn’t like their government. I wonder if Putin talked him out of it…
This idiot president* seems to take the business buzz word “disruption” way too seriously. As applied to foreign policy, it’s a synonym for destruction. Team Trump wants to take a wrecking ball to NATO, the EU, and the WTO without considering the implications. They don’t care what happens next as long as they get their way. It’s an infantile way to conduct foreign policy but it suits Donald Trump just fine. He’s unlikely to know the word but he’s a nihilist at heart.
Trump’s desire to burn down NATO is circumstantial evidence that he’s been compromised by the Russians. Putin’s policy is to destablize European institutions and Trump is either playing into his hands or following orders. In either case, he’s trying to destroy what it took 70 years to build. It’s ironic that a man who fancies himself a builder in his business life, is strictly a destroyer in his political life.
One of my mottos as a blogger is that there’s a Ray Davies song for every occasion. That’s why the Kinks get the last word:
Paranoia, the destroyer.