When you look at the Trump administration, it’s important to keep in mind that appearances can be deceiving.
Trump, for instance, isn’t the real President. Steve Bannon is. Which is horrible. He’s like Hitler and Goebbels rolled into one and manifested in a guy who looks like eczema personified.
And then there’s Rex Tillerson. Remember him? You know, the Exxon CEO who received the Russian “Medal of Friendship Award” in 2013 after inking deals with the state-owned Russian oil company Rosneft?
Rex is supposed to be the Secretary of State, but if you were going by things he’s said and public appearances, you’d be forgiven for thinking he was dead. Put differently, Rex is very much unlike Frederick Douglass who, according to the President, “has done a great job and is getting noticed more and more.”
Well as it turns out, there’s a reason you don’t hear much from Rex. See, just like Trump isn’t really the President, Tillerson isn’t really Secretary of State. Jared Kushner is.
Of course this has been readily apparent for sometime now but, again like Frederick Douglass, “it’s getting noticed more and more.”
Last month, Salon said the following about Kushner’s role:
After reports that both Secretary of State Rex Tillerson and Secretary of Homeland Security John Kelly have been sidelined in President Donald Trump’s foreign policy-making, it is now coming out that the real power in the Oval Office may be th president’s son-in-law, Jared Kushner.
Kushner joined Tillerson during a meeting with Mexican foreign minister Luis Videgaray, when Tillerson discussed his plans for a trip to Mexico with President Trump, and before Tillerson took a trip to the German city of Bonn for a meeting of G20 leaders, according to Vanity Fair. Last weekend, Tillerson dined outside of the security perimeter while Trump ate his meal with Kushner, and Kushner was regularly seen “hovering over the shoulder of Tillerson” like a “shadow secretary of state.”
Kushner’s influence is so great, and Tillerson’s by comparison so minimal, that the Secretary of State didn’t even find out that Trump was reconsidering his position on a two-state solution in the Israeli-Palestinian crisis until a press conference in which Netanyahu mentioned both Trump and Kushner.
Cue Captain Picard:
Jared's influence is so great that [Rex] didn’t find out Trump was reconsidering 2-state solution 'til Netanyahu mentioned Kushner n presser pic.twitter.com/RSegDimqjs
— Walter White (@heisenbergrpt) March 12, 2017
Well fast forward to today and I want you too have a look at how ubiquitous this has become:
Diplomats & Secretaries of State from other nations told to meet w/ Trump's son-in-law instead of Rex Tillerson.https://t.co/L0w4Uj2N92
— Shaun King (@ShaunKing) March 11, 2017
But you know, don’t worry. Because Tennessee Senator Bob Corker says being completely asleep on the job and bowing to Kushner at every turn is all part of Tillerson’s genius. Here’s the Times:
Defenders say Mr. Tillerson has been accomplishing far more behind the scenes, including arranging for the first trip of a Saudi foreign minister to Iraq in more than a quarter-century — his first foray into the sinkhole of Middle East politics.
“He’s already developing plans to begin ratcheting back Putin’s nefarious behavior,” Senator Bob Corker, the chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, said in an interview — steps that would represent the first known effort by the new administration to face off against President Vladimir V. Putin of Russia.
“He’s won status and respect of the president, of McMaster, and talks all the time to Jared,” the senator said, referring to the national security adviser, Lt. Gen. H. R. McMaster, and Jared Kushner, Mr. Trump’s son-in-law, who has emerged as a prominent voice on American foreign policy.
“He doesn’t mind at all that these stories are being written about him being missing,” Mr. Corker, a Tennessee Republican, said about Mr. Tillerson. “When he’s ready to talk, you will be very highly impressed.”
Thanks, Bob. In the meantime, you’ll forgive us if we don’t hold our breathe.
At the end of the day, perhaps someone should remind Jared and Ivanka that when history judges this administration, they’re “complicit”…