Perhaps on the day when Politico printed a fairly vicious anti-Semitic story that has been circulating on neo-Nazi web sites for a while, it should be expected that they opened their site to a former Obama NSC official who accuses Trump of attacking Syria as a “wag the dog” move.
It is hard to avoid wondering whether the purpose of the strikes was less to defend a red line that Trump had never supported than yet another effort by the president to distract the media’s attention and change the subject from his problems at home. After all, ever since the investigations into possible Trump campaign collusion with Russian efforts to influence the U.S. presidential election picked up steam, Trump has gone to extraordinary lengths to deflect attention onto other issues—starting with his baseless allegations that Obama wiretapped his phones in Trump Tower and continuing with sustained efforts by him and his surrogates to keep that story alive. With his popularity falling to unprecedented lows for a new president, and major legislative goals on health care and immigration blocked in Congress or in the courts, it’s not hard to believe that Trump would take a step that would dominate media’s attention, win plaudits from many in his party and some key allies abroad, and might even have some substantive merit.
The author is Philip Gordon and from 2013-15 he was White House Coordinator for the Middle East, North Africa and the Gulf Region. In other words, he’s the cretin who presided over the mess in Syria, including Obama’s first threat about a “red line.”
I find the whole line of Gordon’s argument to be so dishonest that no person capable of full-time employment could believe it and only the most crass, unethical and mindless partisan even voice it.
You don’t have to believe Trump is suddenly a humanitarian but anyone with an ounce of decency should be able to admit that being president is different from throwing rotten fruit from the cheap seats. Even if you think Trump’s sympathy for dead Syrians was fake you have to be profoundly stupid not to consider that maybe he considered his personal prestige was on the line and he was being personally tested. Everything we know about Trump from the campaign predicted he would attack Syria. My prediction was posted hours before the event happened. H. R. McMaster made it perfectly clear today that the administration’s policy in regards to Assad has not changed one whit from before the attack. Getting rid of Assad is still on the agenda AFTER stomping on ISIS. In the meantime, the administration will not allow the use of chemical weapons.
He also worked under the direction of the guy at Ground Zero in the leak of Mike Flynn’s name to the press: Ben Rhodes. Rhodes, you’ll recall, pledged to form a “resistance,” a government-in-exile to combat Trump. Gordon’s real objection, though, is more visceral. He is a f**k-up. He was incompetent in his position as the regional outcome demonstrates daily. Anything anyone else does that mitigates the seething and effervescing ball of #FAIL he left behind is a direct indictment of his fecklessness. Of course he’s going to insult the guy who has exposed him as a fraud.