When alleged career criminal Paul Manafort was informed that he was eventually going to be indicted and arrested in the Trump-Russia scandal, he didn’t suddenly try to straighten up his act. Instead he took a high paying overseas consulting job, which seemed remarkably similar to the gigs that got him into legal trouble to begin with, in an attempt to land one more big payday before he had to hunker down and fight a prolonged battle against impending criminal charges.
Manafort’s logic must have been that if he was going down for his past actions then there was nothing he could do to prevent it, and he might as well cash in one last time, so he’ll have the money waiting for him if he somehow beats the rap. There’s a lesson in there about how people like Paul Manafort tend to behave when they think they’re about to be finished. It informs us that Donald Trump’s other allies, the important ones around the world who pull his strings, are accelerating their own plans because they think that Trump is about to be finished.
Last night the crown prince of Saudi Arabia had eleven of his fellow princes arrested on what appear to be bogus corruption charges, including the wealthy and powerful Prince Alwaleed, in an aggressive power grab. Last weekend, Jared Kushner took a secret trip to Saudi Arabia. Just hours before the arrests began, Donald Trump posted a tweet about the IPO of a Saudi Arabian government oil company. We don’t know what role Trump and Kushner played in the palace coup – but from their actions it’s clear they had some role in it.
The sudden actions of the Saudi Arabian crown prince seemed rushed and hasty, as if he’d been planning it all along but suddenly concluded that he’d better hurry up and go through with it before Donald Trump is finished. It’s the weakness and complicity of Trump that allows these kinds of naked aggression to play out in foreign countries. They’re now suddenly taking their best ambitious shots, revealing that they know Trump is finished. Now we see what Vladimir Putin does next, as he too inevitably concludes Trump’s time is increasingly short.
Bill Palmer is the publisher of the political news outlet Palmer Report