Victims of racism and misogyny: Donald Trump has told these four Congresswomen to “go back” to the countries from which they came; they are all US citizens.
Has anybody else been watching the ongoing soap opera of Donald Trump, Ilhan Omar, Rashida Tlaib (together with other US Democratic Congresswomen Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and Ayanna Pressley), and the Israeli government headed by Benjamin Netanyahu with the same astonished bemusement as This Writer?
I mean, how can anybody justify this out-and-out racism from the leaders of two supposedly democratic countries?
You’ll remember it started when Mr Trump decided to publish racist tweets about the four ladies (three of whom were born in the US and one was naturalised after coming to that country as a child), suggesting they should “go back and help fix the totally broken and crime infested places from which they came”.
Unless he was referring to “totally broken and crime infested places” in the United States, that’s stark racism, right there.
The when Ms Omar and Ms Tlaib were preparing to visit Israel, he put pressure on Israeli PM Benjamin Netanyahu to block them from being allowed entry to that country. The first Muslim women elected to Congress, they were going to visit the occupied Palestinian territories, most notably the West Bank.
Ms Omar responded to the ban by saying it was an “affront” for Mr Netanyahu to give in to pressure from Mr Trump. Others have strongly criticised the US president for influencing a foreign leader against his own political opponents.
“Trump’s Muslim ban is what Israel is implementing, this time against two duly elected Members of Congress,” said Ms Omar.
“Sadly, this is not a surprise given the public positions of Prime Minister Netanyahu, who has consistently resisted peace efforts, restricted the freedom of movement of Palestinians, limited public knowledge of the brutal realities of the occupation and aligned himself with Islamophobes like Donald Trump.”
Mr Netanyahu’s decision has harmed Israel’s position among US politicians, with staunch Israel support and minority leader in the Senate, Chuck Schumer, calling it a sign of “weakness, not strength”, and saying it would “only hurt the US-Israeli relationship and support for Israel in America”.
House speaker Nancy Pelosi added that it was “beneath the dignity of the great State of Israel”. She said Mr Trump’s interference was “a sign of ignorance and disrespect, and beneath the dignity of the office of the president”.
2020 Democratic presidential contender Bernie Sanders said, “It is disgusting that a bigot like Trump is attacking Rashida Tlaib and Ilhan Omar in this way. Opposing Netanyahu’s policies is not ‘hating the Jewish people.’ We must stand together against those who promote hatred and racism in Israel, Palestine, the US and everywhere.”
And yet Mr Trump seems to be hugely popular with a certain slab off the American people – popularity that has no rational explanation and that has been lampooned rather brutally but effectively in the following video:
Perhaps this is the way forward?
After Nick Clegg had the satirical song treatment with Sorry, which turned his apology for the Liberal Democrats’ decision to ditch their policy to cancel student tuition fees and support tripling them instead, in order to go into the disastrous coalition government with the Conservatives, he disappeared from public view and is now in charge of
censoring left-wing political websites combating ‘fake news’ on Facebook.
It’s true that right-wing politicians hate the ridicule of the mob.
But will it work on Mr Trump?
Let’s be honest. Based on our experience of the last few years, he’d probably claim it was adulation.
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