“Talk softly and carry a big stick.” My favorite president, a Republican, Theodore Roosevelt applied this strategy to international relations. President Trump has reversed the order of that strategy: talk loudly, alienate our closest allies, and whittle “Eisenhower’s stick” down to a powerless twig.
I was talking to a couple of working class gentlemen the other day who supported Trump. I explained to these hard working guys that if Trump and the far right promulgate their agenda, particularly the Orwellian named “Right to Work” legislation, what is left of the working class will die off. Right to Work is an Orwellian term for the far right wing’s attempt to destroy organized labor forever.
These working class gentlemen had the same arguments in support of Trump. “He’s tough,” they said. I explained that this man is far from tough. He talks loudly and doesn’t carry a stick–the opposite of what President Roosevelt advised. He is more willing to criticize Meryl Streep than Vladimir Putin. Putin: a guy who has murdered his political enemies, destroyed free press, persecutes gays, and has dreams of restoring the Russian Empire.
Putin has trampled over the sovereignty of his neighbors in order to achieve his diabolical goals, and he will continue to do so. The only bulwark against Russian aggression is the United States and its Western allies under the NATO alliance and defense umbrella. Trump’s Russian foreign policy is weak appeasement. He wants to strip NATO of its budget and render it toothless. Any student of history realizes that appeasing a dictator like Putin–a murderer by any other name–is sheer folly. All one has to do is study the attempted appeasement of Hitler.
It angers me and frightens me that Trump has such a cozy relationship with our greatest enemy. It frightens me that NATO–the alliance that has kept the Western World the most powerful civilization in the world–is about to come to an end.
This is a victory for Russia and Putin, who not only interfered with our election, but are also interfering with the election of our Western allies. We are under attack! This is not hyperbole. And now we have a president who is nothing more than a puppet to Putin and the Russians. His cabinet is a reflection of his obsequiousness to Putin.
So to the gentlemen who think Trump is tough because he talks tough, remember the words of Theodore Roosevelt: talk softly and carry a big stick.
President Obama was tough, yet he didn’t often feel the need to talk tough. But he stood up to the world’s bullies: Putin and Netanyahu. He supplied weapons to Syrian rebels who subscribed to secularism, he sent troops and weapons to the countries bordering Russia (it is the most militarized the region has been since WWII because of President Obama), his drone program put no American military personnel in danger, yet he was able to take out our country’s most dangerous enemies, and it was the left wing of the Democratic Party that criticized him for his drone program, proving that politics should stop at the water’s edge. President Obama talked softy and carried a big stick. He didn’t go around trumpeting to the world how tough he is for doing what a president must do to protect innocent Americans.
Why? First of all, it isn’t something a president should brag about, if he has any moral standards. Secondly, he did not want to make the War on Terror seem like a clash of civilizations. He understood that if we create this narrative of a clash of civilizations, then we create more terrorists and we label innocent people as enemies. And what did Trump do when he came into office? He reinforced the clash of civilizations narrative with his incompetent immigration ban, amongst other things. And because of that, our grandchildren will be fighting a War on Terror for years to come.
We are at war with Russia, and they are winning. They’ve exploited our most sacred institution by interfering with our elections, and the result is that we have an incompetent president who thinks that our country (the country that has fought for freedom around the world, is the first to respond when another nation suffers some sort of catastrophe, the country that freed Europe from the iron grip of fascism and communism) is just as immoral and nihilistic as Putin’s Russia. And if you don’t believe me, watch the O’Reilly interview in which Trump said that we are just as morally bankrupt as Russia. It’s hard to believe that Trump is a patriot, after that blasmphemous statement. Is this the man we want leading our country while we are under attack?
We are at war: Cold War 2.0. And we are losing. Wars, especially between two nuclear powers, are not usually shooting wars. Instead our sacred institutions and our superpower status are being attacked through Russian spying and cyber attacks. These attacks are crippling the United States and our Western allies. Yet, under the new Administration, we’ve yet to hear a critique, nevermind ideas for a counterattack or sanctions.
So are we going to capitulate and accept that our president is a puppet to the Russians? Or are we going to follow in the foot steps of the men and women who died to protect our sovereignty and our right to hold elections without foreign interference ? Are we going to continue to support NATO–the alliance that has protected our superpower status since post WWII? Are we going to fight back against Russia’s act of war?
Wake up America! Trump is a puppet, an incompetent, and a malignant narcissist. The Trump Campaign engaged in message of hate and division to squeak out a win, but his pathological dishonesty leads him to believe that he didn’t really lose the popular vote . He is unprincipled and is not worthy of the office he now holds. Our first step in fighting back is to pressure our congressmen and senators to launch an independent investigation into his ties to Russia; then we vote for Republicans and Democrats in 2017 who pledge to impeach Trump for treason, incompetence, and mental instability.
The tough guy talk is a defensive mechanism for people who really aren’t tough at all and who have low self-esteem, or in Trump’s case malgignant narcissism. It is time for every true patriot, Republican and Democrat, to step up and defend their country against Russian hostility. Our veterans did not fight WWII, the Korean War, and the Vietnam War (the latter two wars being proxy wars against the Soviet Union/Russia) just for the the greatest superpower in the world to capitulate our sovereignty to a thug: Putin. Let’s show that we are still the land of the free and “the home of the brave”; let’s once again prove to the world that the United States is the guarenter of liberal democracy, free markets, and human rights, and that anyone who violates those rights, i.e., Vladimir Putin, is an enemy to United States–an enemy to humanity.