There’s nothing quite like the Nazis for a useful, clarifying analogy to convey my estimation of the Republican Party and the vile, sanctimonious chowderheads who populate it. If you’re wondering whether or not to include your Uncle Fred, who is, admittedly, a Republican, in your dinner plans, try substituting the word “Republican” with the word “Nazi,” ask the question again and go with the obvious answer – which ought to be a resounding “no.” Unless you’re a cannibal.
That it gets easier with time to think of Republicans as a species of Nazi is helped along by the concomitant fact that it gets easier with time to think of Trump as a species of Hitler. Now, I don’t expect that analogy to walk around on all fours, of course. Hitler, for instance, had one talent: he was a brilliant orator. Trump has no talents whatsoever. But one thing Republicans and Nazis have in common is the “Fuhrer Principle.” It is the notion that the word of the Fuhrer is above the law, and the trickle down of policy and decision making must always keep this principle in mind. If it comes down to a contest between the law and Trump, Trump must always win.
So when Donald Trump ordered the Nimitz-class carrier USS Abraham Lincoln, its escorting flotilla, and various and sundry B-52s into the Persian Gulf to answer the Iranian “threat” to Saudi oil, I immediately thought of Hitler. When Hitler invaded Poland on a wholly counterfeit pretext it started World War II. It remains to be seen what Trump’s provocation in the Gulf is going to start. But, “We should remind ourselves that this is a TOTALLY UNNECESSARY CRISIS!” tweeted Trita Parsi, a professor at Georgetown University and an Iran specialist.
And totally unnecessary it is. Since last week, the officials at the White House have insisted they have “specific and credible” intelligence indicating Iran or its regional supporters may be preparing attacks against American forces or targets in the Gulf region. So Donald Trump has placed a carrier and supporting forces in the region, just in case they lack targets.
Donald Trump’s provocation probably won’t lead to World War III. But the fact that it could, or the fact that it could lead to something that might in turn lead to World War III, is not a concern of Trump’s. He doesn’t give a crap about your safety or mine or the world’s, because Donald Trump lives in a fantasy land. What he has in mind with this move into the Gulf hardly seems relevant any more. Does one concern oneself with the motives of a lunatic who is also stupid? No, one looks for ways to thwart him. When the lunatic is the president of the United States, the call for a solution simply becomes that much more immediate and urgent.
Robert Harrington is an American expat living in Britain. He is a portrait painter.