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OpEdNews Op Eds    H2'ed 4/11/17

The Bombs Of Springtime

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Nothing, I mean absolutely nothing, gets American adrenalin jacked up and running than a good ole bombing campaign. Yep, we just love to bomb the s**t out of other people living far away from New York or Chicago. So when President Trump faced a quandary as he approached the mythical "100 days in office," he resorted to a true, tried and tested technique -- bomb somebody's country and play the supine mainstream media like Nero's fiddle.

You have to understand that as this self-delusional deadline approached the president may have taken stock of his situation and found that he'd made a real mess of things. His approval ratings are in the toilet, his much-vaunted Executive Orders blitzes have gummed up the works, fizzled out, and the courts have told him "not so fast." His first-pick people to fill key positions in his administration are either running for the proverbial hills or skedaddling from their desks in record numbers. Congress is now more dysfunctional than ever before sullied and embarrassed by the incompetence of Speaker Paul Ryan, and the idiotic shenanigans of a House Intelligence Committee that behaves and acts as the president's private vetting system.

And all of his late-morning tweeting, now becoming really monotonous, silly and boring, cannot stop the political calamities that were his efforts to repeal and replace Obamacare, his "fuzzy math" over how many people attended his inauguration ( as opposed to President Obama) or his still unsubstantiated claim that "millions of undocumented people" voted in the last election or his promise to set up a committee to investigate same that has not materialized to date. Then there's the Russian thing that still hangs over his head as the sword of Damocles. Its still there like a great bird of prey, watching, waiting, and eager to pounce.

Well, there was ONE thing that he got done. President Trump got his pick for the US Supreme Court approved, that's true. However, the fact is that even with the Republican Party in full control of both chambers, and the White House, Senate Leader Mitch "the turtle" McConnell still had to break the Senate to get it done. That must have caused a lot of anxiety in the White House. So with all of these moving balls in the air dangling around his orange head, what was he to do now that his tweeting was being ignored, had finally become monotonous and lost its luster and shine?

Aha! Got it! Let's blow some crap up! That is something that is always guaranteed to work. And so it came to pass on a Thursday night Trump's orders were hastily given (after he looked at some pictures), transmitted and received, and some 59 Tomahawk missiles leaped from the bowels of a pair of US destroyers into the Mediterranean night, bound for Syria. For the umpteenth time, a sitting US president sought to change a set of pesky and annoying subjects and narratives at home by launching an attack abroad.

And it worked. The deflection attack gave President Trump and his beleaguered White House staff a contrived and concocted respite. The bombing effect upon the reliable media was immediate, dramatic, dynamic, and completely disgusting. Media talking heads that previously called Trump "unhinged and incompetent" now sang his praises. For example, CNN's Fareed Zakaria, a journalist that I really respect, declared the attack to be, at long last, the true beginning of Trump's presidency. Not to be outdone, Brian Williams of NBC trumped (pardon the pun) Zakaria's deep-throated enthusiasm by breathlessly describing the missile launches as "beautiful" - three times in 30 seconds - and then asked one of his guests as an afterthought, "What did they hit?"

Say what? A United States president launched a missile attack on a nation that did not provoke the United States, without sufficient verification of the facts (of course they don't matter) and without thinking through the repercussions and consequence is now somehow "presidential?" But here are the FACTS. One, the airfield that President Trump and his military advisors targeted is older than most in Syria and the aircraft that it housed is older, much older, than those operating in the air over Syria. Two, so in the end our "proactive and newly minted president," hit his stride and became the hero or the mainstream media for spending over $60 million dollars to hit an airstrip that has similar characteristics and use value to a used care parking lot in New Jersey or Texas.

That's why I could not for the life of me imagine the impromptu praises and brown-nosed highfalutin adoration for President Trump whose actions changed ABSOLUTELY NOTHING in the Syrian civil war or aided and abetted its outcome. Perhaps its better that the missiles only hit a half-empty military airbase and not cause significant human casualties. Syria and the rest of the region have already seen enough bloodshed. In addition to the brutal attacks by their own government, Russia and ISIS, Syrians have absorbed a significant amount of violence from the US and other members of its bombing coalition. For example, in the 1,000 days since the Obama-initiated, anti-ISIS air campaign began, Syria has been bombed from the air over 8,000 times. The United States default option when it comes to Syria is to rain bombs from the sky on a country where everyone understands that there is NO MILITARY SOLUTION. But when the US carries out these actions the optics look good on TV at home.

Non-stop "breaking news" gins cold coverage and, if only for a brief time, the president's approval ratings improve and politicians in the United States Congress get FREE MEDIA opportunities to speak about "the president's actions." It's a win-win political situation at the expense of defenseless people including women and children that so caused Trump to move. Thing is even as President Trump seeks to cut programs that help "little children right here in America" and seniors experience food insecurity, the amount of money that we spent on this ill-conceived attack would save Meals On Wheels program.

In the end, the sundry anthropomorphic talking heads and Trump regime enablers (on Fox 5 News), posing as journalists in today's "fake news" media world, that jingoistically sing the songs of war, what can I say? War news always rings the dinner bell and turns on the advertising spigot for the cable news outlets. These fawning, genuflecting news media are so inconsistent, callous, and insensitive to the suffering others that a country devastated by war and sectarian strife, and a clueless president looking through the cross-hairs, who has now elevated paranoia to foreign policy, to them lobbing deadly missiles on a country is just another preparation for 4th of July's fireworks show.

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MICHAEL DERK ROBERTS Small Business Consultant, Editor, and Social Media & Communications Expert, New York Over the past 20 years I've been a top SMALL BUSINESS CONSULTANT and POLITICAL CAMPAIGN STRATEGIST in Brooklyn, New York, running (more...)

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