Friday, 24 February 2017 14:46

Trump makes promises at CPAC but mute on Russian tampering

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trump mexicoDonald Trump appeared at CPAC on Friday to give another campaign speech. He railed against “horrible regulations,” promised to put miners back to work with “beautiful clean coal” while protecting the environment. Trump, also, promised to make the Republican Party the party of jobs. That’s a lot of promising and the enthusiasm for this kind of hopeful rhetoric, occasionally contradictory, is going to wear thin without specific action plans to back up the words.

The President said he was going to get Americans off welfare and back to work, instigate one of the greatest military build-ups ever, totally obliterate ISIS, support the police, build the wall, reform the tax code and deal with the deficit. We’ve heard it all before. Instead of outlining how any of these things will happen, Trump offered the usual aspirational goals.

Notably, there wasn’t a mention of election tampering that intelligence agencies and Congress are investigating. Reince Priebus, Trump’s Chief of Staff, claims “Russia, Russia, Russia” is all he hears these days. Hopefully, Priebus naps during the day because sleep deprivation is unhealthy. In the meantime, someone should check the bread in the White House for mold before the fearful contagion that has infected this administration spreads even further.

Promises to “fix” terrible trade deals, bring our jobs back, bring the second amendment back, cut taxes, care for our veterans, rebuild the inner cities, put the media in its place, build a wall, and bring back the dreams of the great people the media calls deplorable, is a lot of bringing back. It’s all very familiar stuff.

Some promises are worthwhile but cannot be accomplished with the stroke of a pen, a rousing speech to the faithful, or a raucous press conference. Obamacare will not be replaced without Congressional action and, so far, there’s nothing concrete to take its place.

Making America “bigger, better, and stronger than ever before” won’t come about because the President says it’s going to happen. There comes a time when rhetoric becomes illusionary blather when it isn’t backed up by action and action requires planning, something the administration forgets. It wanted a fast track change in how government works but, to date, has done little to make that change happen as fast as words fly out of the White House.

As Congressional Committees and the intelligence community probe the 2016 election tampering by Russia, sweet-talking about a new America won’t obscure questions about how Trump got elected. Steve Bannon’s advocacy for “economic nationalism” can’t hide the Albatross hanging around the President’s neck. At some point the bird begins to smell and rot.

On August 15, 2016, former National Security Advisor Gen. Mike Flynn gave an intriguing interview to the Washington Post in which he said about his Russian contacts:

“One [trip to Russia] in the military [when director of the Defense Intelligence Agency]. I went there on a fully approved trip. I had a great trip. I was the first U.S. officer ever allowed inside the headquarters of the GRU [Russian intelligence]. I was able to brief their entire staff. I gave them a leadership OPD. [Professional development class on leadership] and talked a lot about the way the world’s unfolding.”

Translated into the vernacular, Flynn schooled Russian intelligence agents on how to improve their spy craft. When your biggest enemy tells you how to operate even better, thinking enemies listen. "Vashe zrodovye”!

Flynn’s view of Russia is, presumably, Trump’s. It’s based on the assumption that since Russia was our ally during the Second World War it should be regarded as our ally now. Forget those unsavory snafus like Russian ICBM Missiles in Cuba, 1956’s Hungary, the Berlin Wall, or a host of other nasty dealings, including the seizure of the Crimea. All the goals articulated by Trump, however, can’t obscure the fact that the Red Army fought, first, with the Nazis before joining us.


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