Missiles and Money: Trump's Decision to Bomb Syria Was Anything But "Presidential" - News | MERRY JANE
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Missiles and Money: Trump's Decision to Bomb Syria Was Anything But "Presidential"

The missile attack smacks of juvenile subterfuge and the kind of phyllo-thin false pretense this White House daily feeds its public.

by Tim Baker

by Tim Baker

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One of the most disturbing narratives so far in the saga of our Cheetoh-in-Chief is that after his decision to punitively bomb Assad’s Syria for use of chemical weapons he has been presented as somehow more presidential. Some even said the military action marked the moment he "became president." Because most of the missiles used in the attacks “destroyed or severely deteriorated” their targets, the mission was considered a success and The Donald’s decision-making skills suddenly appeared existent by the press. Most of the outlets who have begun referring to this act of violence as somehow indicative of a move towards a more presidential Trump were able to conveniently forget his botched Yemen raid, which was almost like a petulant child needing to play with his new toys. The Syrian strike didn’t seem childish like Yemen’s did, but it smacks of juvenile subterfuge and the kind of phyllo-thin false pretense this White House daily feeds its public.

The choice of Syrian targets and insistence by Q̶u̶s̶a̶y  Eric Trump that hitting these targets proves there’s no link between Putin’s Russia and Trump’s US was the worst kind of hand-tipping. Eric shouldn’t have opened his mouth, but the left can be glad he did: No one in their right mind thinks he had the idea himself that bombing Putin’s ally to minimal casualties could make it seem that Trump hasn’t benefited from Putin’s agenda — I bombed his pal, so he can’t possibly be my buddy. His slip of the tongue came on the same day that Donald Jr. admitted there was no separation between his father’s business interests and his White House responsibilities. Just weeks after telling NBC he had virtually “no contact” with his father, Don Jr. said he’d been in close contact with his father more often recently, despite Don Sr.’s insistence that he has no business contact (and presidential conflicts of interests) with his sons.

Remember Trump's 2013 tweets about Syria? Apparently, he doesn't...

It doesn’t take 20/20 to see these two items — Trump’s continued and relatively-overt interest in his businesses, and his posturing with tomahawk missiles in Syria — are explicitly connected, especially when one looks at how Wall Street responded to The Donald’s actions. According to Fortune, “Missile and weapons manufacturers, including Boeing, Lockheed Martin, Northrop Grumman, and General Dynamics, each rose as much as 1%, collectively gaining nearly $5 billion in market value as soon as they began trading, even as the broader market fell.” This is a pittance compared to the gains made by the company that actually made the tomahawk cruise missiles used in the attacks. Raytheon, whose value gained 2.5% and more than $1 billion in market value the day markets opened following the attack, has been claimed by The Palmer Report to be a part of Donald Trump’s stock portfolio. In other words, the president may have profited directly from his decision to use military force against a heavily-armed and dangerously-allied nation with little to lose.

Trump has talked to his sons directly about business, postured at Russia to prove a point that is most likely not even a truthful one, ignored the office of ethics (as well as the will of a majority of American voters), and possibly profited from what could become the early stages of a global conflict. Of course, he could easily disprove this last statement by releasing the tax returns the whole country wants him to release. Pepper in a little Holocaust denial by a press secretary whose slow descent into abject madness is palpable, and this administration has officially upped the ante in its apparent goal to become the most terrifying reality show in history. Trump’s sleights of hand haven’t distracted everyone from his possibly treasonous or downright despicable leadership decisions, but the last thing anyone should say about this man is that he’s finally acting “presidential.”


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Tim Baker

Tim Baker is a New York-based writer and sometimes editor whose work has appeared in Newsweek, TV Guide, CBS and Discovery Special Editions, and can regularly be found at thrillist.com. He has an MFA in creative writing from The New School and also attended Hunter College of the City University of New York.



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