Just when you think he can’t go any lower…
So on Tuesday, we talked about President Trump’s statement on the brutal murder of Washington Post journalist, Jamal Khashoggi.
Kicking off his statement with “America first!” and “The world is a very dangerous place!” the reality TV president found a way to blame the victim, while also throwing heavy support to his murderers.
In a recent report, the CIA noted that it was more likely than not that Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman had full knowledge of the plot. This wasn’t just a case of an interrogation gone wrong. It was revenge for Khashoggi’s many columns that were critical of the Saudi royal family.
It was a human rights nightmare.
Still, President Trump’s “Crap happens, and then you die” attitude wasn’t without explanation.
No, he did not try to hide his motivations. It was, as it always is with Trump, about the money.
After my heavily negotiated trip to Saudi Arabia last year, the Kingdom agreed to spend and invest $450 billion in the United States. This is a record amount of money. It will create hundreds of thousands of jobs, tremendous economic development, and much additional wealth for the United States. Of the $450 billion, $110 billion will be spent on the purchase of military equipment from Boeing, Lockheed Martin, Raytheon and many other great U.S. defense contractors. If we foolishly cancel these contracts, Russia and China would be the enormous beneficiaries – and very happy to acquire all of this newfound business. It would be a wonderful gift to them directly from the United States!
That particular bit was closely followed by his victim blaming:
Representatives of Saudi Arabia say that Jamal Khashoggi was an “enemy of the state” and a member of the Muslim Brotherhood, but my decision is in no way based on that – this is an unacceptable and horrible crime. King Salman and Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman vigorously deny any knowledge of the planning or execution of the murder of Mr. Khashoggi. Our intelligence agencies continue to assess all information, but it could very well be that the Crown Prince had knowledge of this tragic event – maybe he did and maybe he didn’t!
Who cares, right?
That being said, we may never know all of the facts surrounding the murder of Mr. Jamal Khashoggi. In any case, our relationship is with the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. They have been a great ally in our very important fight against Iran. The United States intends to remain a steadfast partner of Saudi Arabia to ensure the interests of our country, Israel and all other partners in the region. It is our paramount goal to fully eliminate the threat of terrorism throughout the world!
Let’s not forget that 15 of the 19 hijackers on 9/11 were from Saudi Arabia. That’s some awesome allying, there.
I can’t even begin to give words to the gutter-level of cowardice and blatant heartlessness that it requires for any person, but much less a United States president, to simply blow off such a horrific incident, carried out against a U.S. resident.All I can say is, with Trump, there is no bottom.
Let’s not forget that when you make money your god, it becomes a lot easier.
“Saudi Arabia…they buy apartments from me, they spend $40 million, $50 million. Am I supposed to dislike them? I like them very much.”
— Amee Vanderpool (@girlsreallyrule) November 19, 2018
Yeah. That’s your president on the 2016 campaign trail bragging about the money he gets, personally, from the Saudis.
And if you’re still looking for something rational or humane out of Donald Trump, give it up.
He greeted Wednesday by doubling down on Tuesday’s statement, by further praising, and even thanking Saudi Arabia.
“Oil prices getting lower,” Trump tweeted. “Great! Like a big Tax Cut for America and the World. Enjoy! $54, was just $82. Thank you to Saudi Arabia, but let’s go lower!”
There are so many ways to go at this tweet, whether from the point of who actually sets the price for crude oil, to the last time it was at $82 a barrel. What we can say for certain is that we have a president whose priorities are twisted.
Oil prices getting lower. Great! Like a big Tax Cut for America and the World. Enjoy! $54, was just $82. Thank you to Saudi Arabia, but let’s go lower!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) November 21, 2018
Thankfully, other lawmakers are speaking out about Trump’s devotion to the Saudi royal family, as well as his statement.
“The President indicates that Saudi Arabia is the lesser two evils compared to Iran and so the U.S. won’t punish Saudi Arabia for the brutal killing and dismemberment of a dissident journalist in their consulate. I disagree,” Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.), who has sided with Trump numerous times on foreign policy issues, wrote on Twitter.
“I’m pretty sure this statement is Saudi Arabia First, not America First,” he added.
And that would be correct.
I don’t know how we got to this place, but if anyone is still pushing the fantasy of Trump being a strong leader, and not a puppet to foreign interests, or the swampiest of swamp creatures, you can just stop it now.