CORRUPTION WATCH-Americans are accustomed to a military that stays out of politics, but throughout most of world history, the military has played a pivotal role.
The “iacta” in Julius Caesar’s declaration of “alea iacta est” (the die is cast) referred to his bringing his legions into Italy as he crossed the River Rubicon between Gaul and Italy. Caesar committed treason by entering Italy with his legions, as did his army which followed him.
Will the U.S. Military Follow Trump?
If you read the Washington tea leaves, you realize that the military recognized Trump was a danger before he was elected. While the craven political classes only care about their own personal power, the military takes its professional mission more seriously. It is constantly making contingency plans for more scenarios than we can imagine, but we can divine one thing: the military knows that Donald Trump is mentally unbalanced and poses a serious threat. Because members of the American military stay out of politics, they remain silent. Except for Gen. Michael Flynn, they joined his administration to constrain Trump and not to promote him.
The Military Will Not Get Is Druthers
I’ve always heard people say, “If I had my druthers, ...” What are “druthers”? It means one’s preferences. Trumpy-Dumpty is depriving the U.S. military of its druthers to stay out of politics. Never before has a President asked the U.S. military to cross the Rubicon into the territory of treason.
Group Rights Are Behind the Wall Fight
Yep, behind Trump’s asinine wall, one finds racist Identity Politics of Group Rights. The racism is easy to see as Trump’s wall is based on lies about the danger of minorities. There is no national security threat from farm workers and there is none from drug smugglers. (The drug problem stems from the federal government’s War on Drugs foolishness.) Terrorists are either home grown, fly in on airplanes or slip across the Canadian border.
Like any good demagogue, Trump’s objective is to seize power. He is using the wall as only one way to establish that he alone gets to decide national policy. Trump is castrating Congress by threatening to declare a state of emergency. Trump is in the catbird’s seat. When he declares an emergency, Congress becomes impotent.
The nation’s only recourse will be the Supreme Court. If Trump dislikes the Supreme Court’s ruling, he is free to ignore it. Who will be left to stop him from building the wall? How many legions does the Chief Justice command? Of course, Trump’s goal is not to build a wall but to make Trump the sole “decider.” As the Christian Right will tell you, “GOD made Trump king.”
Meanwhile Back in the Barracks
Remember those generals who Trump loves to disparage?
"I know more about ISIS [the Islamic State] than the generals do. Believe me." — November 2015
"There's nobody bigger or better at the military than I am." — June 2015 Fox News interview
“I know more about offense and defense than they (the Generals) will ever understand, believe me. Believe me. Than they (the Generals) will ever understand.” — July 2016
On December 19, 2018, Trump announced that he is withdrawing U.S. troops from Syria within thirty (30) days. On January 6, 2019, we learned that U.S. troops will remain in Syria indefinitely. (Face the Nation, Margaret Brennan interview with Sen. Lindsey Graham)
Should we be pleased or horrified that the military reversed the President’s decision to pull out of Syria? The answer rests in the future, but we can see the social, political, and economic factors which are dragging the military into politics.
Trump and Pelosi Love Group Rights; the Military Hates Them
Group Rights are inherently racist in the broadest sense of the term. MLK’s admonition to judge individuals by the content of character and not by the color of skin was not limited to one’s epidermal hue. It was short hand for the Declaration of Independence’s principle that all individuals have inalienable rights, and thus, each person should be judged as an individual and not on the basis of any group membership. Abraham Lincoln knew that a nation that was fractured by Group Rights could not long stand, but Trump’s goal is not to preserve the Union. Trump wants to become the Union. “L'Etat c'est a moi.”
The Problem with Coups
All coups need military’s support. By their inherent nature, coups overthrow the prior order including the traditional restraint on the military’s involvement in politics. Will the military side with Trump’s take-over based upon racist white supremacy or will it support the Resistance?
Group Rights Will Destroy the Republic
When people make their decisions about what will promote their group, they obsequiously follow their own Fuhrer to salvation or perdition. The military recognizes that it too cannot stand as a house divided. Assuming the military has made its contingency plans, there should be one contingency plan rejecting all Group Rights.
Military leaders know what happens when the camel gets his nose under the tent. Trump’s vile prejudice against Transgender service personnel is the type of action a coward takes by attacking the most vulnerable members of society. Once a predator gets away with victimizing one group, he moves on to the next and the next – including those who have stood silent as der fuhrer targeted one group after another. Nothing will destroy unit cohesion more thoroughly than the climate in which leadership encourages the unit to turn against its members.
Where is the Nuremberg Line?
The U.S. military needs to contemplate whether Trump’s transgender phobia, which he ordered the military to adopt, has crossed the Nuremberg Line. When has Trump’s action become so antithetical to America values of individual inalienable rights that the military will not follow his orders? One might understand how the military allowed itself to go to the border, but can it follow a bigoted President who viciously attacks U.S. military personnel? Haven’t we been down this road before?
(Richard Lee Abrams is a Los Angeles attorney and a CityWatch contributor. He can be reached at: Rickleeabrams@Gmail.com. Abrams’ views are his own and do not necessarily reflect the views of CityWatch.) Edited for CityWatch by Linda Abrams.