Articles > > From Air Force One

Articles - Others - Date: 2020-01-08
By: Oraib Al Rantawi

U.S. forces will not withdraw from Iraq until Baghdad 'pays the U.S back' for its air base, Trump said aboard Air Force One as he returned to Washington after spending the holidays [at Mar-a-Lago].
 
Have we ever heard anything more narrow-minded?,No matter if he loses Iraq and tosses it into Iran's lap. No matter if he hammers the last nail into the coffin of the [anti-corruption] uprising in Baghdad the South, unprecedented in modern Iraqi history. No matter if millions hostile to the U.S. pour into protest and sit-in squares and maybe even the battle trenches to oust the U.S. presence from the region. No matter if the [Iranian] Islamic revolution rekindles its initial flame through unprecedented million-man marches across various Iranian cities. None of this matters as long as the U.S. Treasury can recoup the military base's cost from Iraqi national funds.
 
Is this not reminiscent of the most trashy and frivolous movies in Egyptian cinema, where the groom threatens to take back all the gifts given to his bride if their engagement and marriage plans fall through?
 
What is going on in the White House? How has U.S. policy stooped to this level of superficiality and vulgarity? How can the U.S. establishment allow one man to inflict all of this foolishness and obscenity upon it? Is it not time to take this elephant out of the porcelain shop?
 
A hundred years separate between [Woodrow] Wilson with his Fourteen Points, and Trump and his countless Tweets. That is apparently long enough to descend from the pinnacle of upholding self-determination, freedom of navigation, lifting trade and customs restrictions and barriers, and liberating colonies, to the pits of (historically unprecedented) collective punishment and the destruction of a six-thousand-year-old civilization's cultural and humanitarian heritage.
 
Look at where the U.S. was a century ago, and where it is today.What manner of politicians are these who are totally disconnected from reality, culture, and civilization? What manner of politicians are these who apparently have never read a single useful book? What manner of politicians are these who determine world politics and the global order with the logic a shopkeeper or bank teller at best?
What will it take to protect humankind and the planet from such leadership that inspires pity and derision more than aught else?
 
At first, we found the man amusing, as we are not accustomed to seeing this sort of president in the White House. We were so engrossed by this outlandish Tweets that reading them was the first thing on our to-do list each morning.
 
Then our amusement turned into incredulity. How could the man bring his family into the decision-making process? How could he allow his children and in-laws to interfere in the most important foreign policy matters and decisions? We were somewhat bemused to see him appoint so-and-so and dismiss so-and-so at the blink of an eye, without understanding why he brought in the former or kicked out the latter.
 
Today, we are no longer laughing, and our amusement has turned into horror.The world held its breath for the fallout from his nuclear debates with Kim Jong-Un, his trade war with Xi Jinping, his battles with the Old Continent and aging NATO, his wall with Mexico, his disdain for his country's obligations, and his obsession with doing everything to counter his predecessor's actions.
 
Today, the world is at the edge of its seat as it watches his reckless approach to the matter of Iran and its allies. We are rendered speechless in astonishment to see him threaten Iraq with doom and gloom and utter devastation. We are overtaken with shock to hear him talk about the cost of the U.S. airbase in Iraq.
What kind of era is this?