Moon of Alabama Brecht quote
May 17, 2021

How The Military Slow Rolled Trump

Axios has a series of deep dives into the last two and a half months of the Trump administration. Yesterday it publish Episode 9: Trump's war with his generals which explains how a weak Trump was pushed and tricked into approving policies which were contrary to his own preferences and instincts:

Once in office, though, Trump's ambitions to withdraw from Afghanistan and other countries were subdued, slow-rolled, and detoured by military leaders.

Trump was not assertive enough to use the power of his office to get things done. He also was not smart enough to beat the deep state in its own game.

As Kelley Vlahos of Responsible Statecraft comments:

This is an important read, which also includes new speculation about whether Gen. Milley was actively working against the civilian leadership in the Pentagon during this period. Interestingly, while Trump was railing about “stop the steal” he wasn’t doing what everyone had accused him of doing on the military side: he wasn’t using Macgregor, Miller, et al., to stay in office. Rather, he seemed to believe that following through with his pledge to “end forever wars” would be the ultimate revenge against Esper, Milley, and Generals H.R. McMaster and Jim Mattis. Too bad he did not achieve this one post-election fantasy.


Posted by b on May 17, 2021 at 15:13 UTC | Permalink

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Posted by: NemesisCalling | May 19 2021 20:23 utc | 100

It would indeed be interesting to see whether Trump changes his tune and abandons his despicable championship of imperial projects, such as in Latin America (where he vigorously continued Obama's policy), Ukraine (where he surpassed Obama, an assertion of his supported even by advisors of his predecessor like Norman Eisen), Belarus (he even signed an order in 2019 declaring certain Belorussian officials a "threat to US national security", Syria or his retarded attacks on imaginary and real socialists (literally pushing some American ones towards the DNC, even as he tried to court them for the elections).

It's safe to say, however, that when one employs against foreign governments the very security agencies one claims they try to undermine him, said president has lost it. Nor can one seriously consider as anti-globalist the very POTUS who openly declared we're taking the oil" in reference to Syria and then proceeded to suggest of mega-corporations that would profit handsomely by such a criminal venture (obviously, without the permition of the Syrians).

Posted by: Constantine | May 19 2021 21:27 utc | 101

I voted for Trump twice. I think this article lets Trump off the hook. My suspicion is that he wanted or allowed himself to be rolled/mislead. Pleasing rhetoric for his base and an excuse for no follow through. Gotta keep Bibi and the bankers happy.

Why did I vote twice for Trump? His opponents were THAT bad.

Posted by: Kevin | May 20 2021 2:51 utc | 102

@ Kevin | May 20 2021 2:51 utc | 102 who wrote
Why did I vote twice for Trump? His opponents were THAT bad.

LOL!!! That sort of writing is dangerous at the MoA bar and could possibly bring out commenter Cire who will flail you with ALL CAPS until you slink away....grin

The shit show continues until it doesn't...

Posted by: psychohistorian | May 20 2021 4:51 utc | 103

Sorry @James (98), the link to the original comic worked perfectly on my end (I live in the US). Can you elaborate what's going on on yours?

Posted by: Digby | May 20 2021 7:32 utc | 104

"Re: DJT-phenomenon. It does not matter if POTUS was really a Nationalist, himself. It only matters that he spurred the awakening on and brought about an opening in the lexicon of national discourse: globalism.

As in the Tao Te Ching: "Take the good, discard the bad."

The fact that DJT will now travel and perform on the road again will provide the clue we need to know if HE was real or not. If he goes hard against the Palestinians and starts mouthing off against socialism, you know he is and was always a NeoLib."

You sound self-contradictory, I'm afraid. I agree with your first sentence: it doesn't matter what DJT, the person, is. What's important is what he, his election, his term, represent. And it does represent a working-class rebellion against neoliberal globalization.

But at the same token, it makes no difference what he might be saying about Palestine (or anything else) tomorrow. The 2016-2020 historical episode is not going anywhere.

Posted by: Mao Cheng Ji | May 20 2021 12:26 utc | 105

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