There’s a Scary Element to this Trump/Syria Situation That Deserves to be Discussed

Because I don’t trust a thing Donald Trump says or does, I’ve become much more cynical here lately. I feel that cynicism is valid considering how dishonest he is, how many conspiracies he pushes, and how he’s frequently attempted to use horrific tragedies to his benefit. He constantly fear-mongers and paints a cryptic picture that way when something bad eventually happens he can seize on that moment and say, “See! I told you!”

But Trump also has a history of “leaking” information to the press if he feels it will benefit him. In fact, his entire life is filled with shady, underhanded, and unethical practices showcasing a man who seems to lack any sense of morality when it comes to making sure his best interests are always the primary concern.

So when news of this Syrian chemical attack broke, followed by Trump’s subsequent response, an overwhelming sense of “something doesn’t seem quite right” came over me.

I don’t want to tell anyone what to think, so let me just list a few facts that we all know about Trump, Russia, Assad, and this Syria situation:

  • Trump has repeatedly heaped praise on Russian President Vladimir Putin.
  • Putin is a very close ally to Syrian President Bashar al Assad.
  • Trump is currently under investigation for potentially colluding with Putin following a cyber attack aimed at helping his campaign “defeat” Hillary Clinton last November.
  • While U.S. intelligence officials have said Russia was behind this, Putin has denied those allegations, while Trump’s repeatedly tried to undermine the credibility of their findings.
  • Trump’s had one of the most disastrous starts to a new administration in U.S. history, with an approval rating recently hitting 35 percent.
  • Despite his best efforts to distract Americans, more and more attention has been focused on the on-going investigation into the Trump campaign’s possible ties to Russia.
  • Former top national security advisor Michael Flynn is apparently seeking immunity in exchange for his full cooperation with the on-going Russian investigation.
  • Rep. Devin Nunes removed himself from anything to do with the Russian investigations despite being the chairman of the House Intelligence Committee after facing intense scrutiny over his ethics as it appeared that he was actively trying to sabotage the investigation by working with Trump — the key figure being investigated.
  • Senate Republicans just went “nuclear” to confirm Trump’s Supreme Court pick, Neil Gorsuch.
  • The most recent jobs report came in well below estimates.
  • Trump’s approval rating hits 35 percent.
  • Reports emerge indicating Steven Bannon and Reince Priebus might be on their way out of the administration, two major figures within the White House.

To put it bluntly, Trump’s administration is in a full-on free fall of chaos, controversy and scandal with seemingly no end in sight. With any solution on health care seemingly weeks (if not months) away, and no hint of any big push to get any other major legislation passed, there was no “light at the end of the tunnel” for Trump to turn things around.

Well, until, out of no where, Syria decided to use chemical weapons for the first time in nearly four years. That resulted in Trump launching 59 Tomahawk missiles at a Syrian airfield, claiming he was overwhelmed by the images of dead women and children at the hands of a madman.

For the record, as of writing this, his approval rating has gone up 5 points to 40 percent, actually reaching a “high” of 42 the day of the attack.

Then, of course, Russia is acting “big and bad” in response to Trump’s military strike. Naturally, Trump’s supporters have used Russia’s “stern words” as evidence that the two clearly can’t be colluding with one another because Trump wouldn’t have ordered this if he was, as many have called him, “Putin’s puppet.”

Are you starting to see where I’m going with this?

Donald Trump, in desperate need of something to distract people, while also improving his floundering image, seems to have been handed exactly that.

Let’s be honest here, Putin and Assad are two brutal dictators who have proven that they don’t mind killing innocent people if they feel doing so will benefit them. Meanwhile, we have Trump, a man who seems to idolize authoritarian dictators, often trying to act like one, who’s had a sort of a “bromance” with Putin — Assad’s good buddy.

Here are some of the facts that we know:

  • Assad used chemical weapon on civilians.
  • Russia denies this, claiming they were actually chemical weapons “terrorists” had that leaked following an airstrike.
  • Trump gets to act as if he’s a compassionate person by talking about how horrible this attack is.
  • He then orders 59 Tomahawk missiles fired at a Syrian airbase.
  • ABC News reports the Syrian military had been tipped off by Russian allies and had evacuated by the time the missiles landed.
  • The strike was so ineffective, by later that afternoon jets were already flying missions out of that very same airfield.
  • Russia makes several bold comments condemning Trump’s attack.

So, what did this really accomplish? If you ask me:

  1. It gave Trump a distraction when he desperately needed one.
  2. Allowed Trump to look more “favorable” by responding to the deaths of civilians, many women and children.
  3. Trump then got to “look presidential” by launching missiles into Syria.
  4. Russia then created some public distance between themselves and Trump during a time when many believe they’ve been working together.
  5. This attack by Trump seems to have been purposely ineffective to give the appearance of a “strong response,” without actually accomplishing anything substantial.
  6. The country (at least for now) is distracted by this as Trump’s approval numbers improve.

Clearly I have no way to prove any of this but, in my opinion, it doesn’t seem all that far-fetched to feel as if this was manufactured by three horrible people for the benefit of each. Clearly a stronger Trump is better for Putin if he has, in fact, compromised him. Meanwhile, Trump attacking Syria also gave Russia the opportunity to act as if they’re upset by it which, at least publicly, appears to create some distance between the White House and Kremlin. All the while, Assad, someone who desperately needs Russia’s backing, gave Trump the distraction he needed and the only “punishment” Syria seems to have endured is a missile attack the Syrian military apparently knew about on an airbase that was up-and-running again within a few hours.

I mean — really?

Again, this is just random thoughts based on my opinion and a “gut feeling” that I can’t shake, so please don’t take this as me saying “this is what happened!” I just think this is something more people should at least be discussing based upon the type of vile men we’re dealing with.

Because when it comes to dictators, or people who desperately want to be one, I don’t put anything past them. And if there’s one thing Donald Trump, Vladimir Putin, and Bashar al Assad all have in common, it’s that they’re men who always put their own interests ahead of everyone else.

Feel free to hit me up on Twitter or Facebook and let me know what you think.

Allen Clifton

Allen Clifton is a native Texan who now lives in the Austin area. He has a degree in Political Science from Sam Houston State University. Allen is a co-founder of Forward Progressives and creator of the popular Right Off A Cliff column and Facebook page. Be sure to follow Allen on Twitter and Facebook, and subscribe to his channel on YouTube as well.


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