Ok, so obviously, Trump’s U.N. address was a disaster.
First of all, the nationalist rhetoric is a road to nowhere. As Xi Jinping conveyed earlier this year, the world should be working towards becoming a human community with a shared destiny. Globalization is inevitable and from a utilitarian perspective, it’s highly desirable. It’s not realistic to believe that we, as human beings, can maximize our collective chance of survival in the universe without relegating nationalist tendencies to the dustbin of history.
That doesn’t mean we can’t maintain our identities and/or preserve our unique cultural heritage(s), but it does mean that we need to accept the fact that at the end of the day, we’re human beings first and Americans, Chinese, Indians, Germans, Russians, etc. second. If we don’t recognize that, we won’t make it. Period.
So what you’ll hear in the following clip, is nonsense:
— CNN (@CNN) September 19, 2017
But let’s just try and let that slide because as profoundly destructive as that ideological bent most assuredly is, we all knew it was coming.
After regaling the world with Steve Bannon’s nationalist vision, Trump went on to call Kim Jong-Un “rocket man.” So if you thought he was going to confine that to Twitter, you were wrong. I’m not sure what possessed him to think that the U.N. General Assembly is an appropriate forum for jokes (maybe he was inspired by the outpouring of likes he got on the initial tweet), but he “went there.” Here’s the clip:
— BBC News (World) (@BBCWorld) September 19, 2017
Note that he also threatened to “totally destroy” North Korea in the same breath that he feigned empathy for the North Korean people.
Then he started in on Iran. Again, this was expected, but the rhetoric was the very definition of reckless. Here are some highlights (or “lowlights” depending on how you want to look at it):
- TRUMP: `WE CANNOT LET A MURDEROUS REGIME CONTINUE’ ACTIVITIES
- TRUMP: IRANIAN GOVT MASKS CORRUPT DICTATORSHIP
- TRUMP: IRAN DEAL IS `EMBARRASSMENT’ TO THE UNITED STATES
He clearly indicated that the U.S. is prepared to pull out of the Iran nuclear deal (which would be a terrible decision for all kinds of reasons that should be immediately clear to anyone with any foreign policy experience whatsoever) and then, he parroted the same old line about Iran being the world’s worst offender in terms of exporting terrorism. That is a patent falsehood. It’s a bold face lie. By virtue of Washington’s ties to Riyadh, the U.S. is pot committed to pushing what everyone knows is a disingenuous line about Hezbollah. It’s one thing to say “look, Hassan Nasrallah isn’t a guy I’d invite to Sunday dinner, and we have to support our allies in Israel by doing our part to stop the spread of Iranian influence.” But it’s entirely another to gloss over the fact that when it comes to combatting the Sunni extremist groups that are now attacking the West on a near-weekly basis, no one is more effective on the battlefield than Hezbollah and their allied militias in Iraq. That’s irrefutable. Further, Trump painted a picture of Iran as a dusty, uncivilized backwater run by barbarians and populated by oppressed peasants. That’s completely ridiculous.
And the President’s harangue just went on, and on, and on as expected.
In the final analysis, this was an absurdly divisive speech that serves to validate everyone’s worst fears about this administration. Worse than that, Trump is pushing the world further down the path to isolationism while simultaneously championing a nationalist message that has no place in modernity and frankly, that a whole lot of people died trying to stamp out.
We all knew this was going to be bad, but it was orders of magnitude worse than expected no matter what kind of spin anyone tries to put on it.
Speaking of spin…
TRUMP SAYS UN SPEECH WENT `REALLY WELL,' FOX NEWS REPORTS
— Walter White (@heisenbergrpt) September 19, 2017
And summed up…
— Victor Leonardi (@VICTORLEONARDIB) September 19, 2017