On the America First agenda, President Trump, the swamp is closing in on you

Mr. President:

With respect, Sir, you are letting the pro-status-quo swampers overtake you and position themselves to paralyze your plan to make the concept of America First the operative guideline for the national government. Except on the vital job-creation and morale-building fronts — on which you have done splendidly — the goal of America First seems to be fading from your administration in favor of business as usual both at home and abroad. Please consider the following:

  • Criticism of the Freedom Caucus: Your abrasive and unnecessary comments about these representatives may have been a function of your innate — and much needed in these times — propensity for combativeness. But now that you have had your say, just accept the fact that the Caucus saved your administration’s ass from a terrible bill put forward by the bulk of Republicans who want almost nothing that America needs. More fundamentally, if your advisers suggested that you attack the Caucus, it is time for new advisers. The members of the Caucus long ago demonstrated that they will only back-off when America is going to be assisted by the legislation upon which they are asked to concur. Criticism from you, denigration from other Republicans, or threats to work against their reelection in 2018 are not going to move them an inch. In a line of thought that flows directly from that of the republic’s Founders, the Freedom Caucus sees their task as legislating not only for the improvement of life and security for Americans today, but to ensure that all of our posterity inherits both a chance to prosper and a constitutionally viable republic. They will go down fighting for this goal not matter what pressures are brought to bear against them, and for that reason their worth to your and their effort to make America First a durable reality is inestimable. Wise up, Mr. President, as it is much more likely that the small Freedom Caucus will be re-elected in its entirety, than that you will be reelected in 2020 if you abandon their republican principles and concern for posterity, and side with the establishment Republicans. This reality, of course, assumes that there will be an election in 2020 and that the republic will not then be consumed in a civil war fought over the national government’s failure to prosecute the dozens of people who acted criminally under Bush and Obama, and whom the American people know could return to power and further restrict liberty, launch more interventionist wars, create minority rule, and impoverish them with new taxes. One way or another, Mr. President, those people must — and will — be neutralized, either by trial, conviction, and incarceration, or by rope and a very well-armed citizenry.
  • Montenegro: What can possibly be found in this irrelevant-to-America, Balkan country, Mr. President, that would ever be worth a single U.S. dollar or the life of a single Marine or soldier? What is it that makes this country worth negating the Congress’s and, thereby, the citizenry’s sole constitutional prerogative to declare war? What is it that benefits the United States from an automatic war if a non-NATO country attacks Montenegro? Mr. President, this is the fine madness of Senators McCain and Graham, both of whom are reprehensible political ghouls who love any war they can find so long as their children or loved ones are not at risk. Only the quickly growing-in-stature Senator Rand Paul had the courage to stand for America First when he blocked McCain’s late-night attempt to sneak Montenegro into NATO. Senator Paul needed and merited the support of you and your administration, as did the parents, wives, and children of our Marines and soldiers who would be killed or maimed in some half-assed, McCain-wanted war to defend Montenegro. Damn both you and your lieutenants for not joining Senator Paul to defend America First.
  • Idiot Generals and Iran: Mr. President, with respect, you need to begin to think for yourself and go with your commonsense, and not with the advice of U.S. generals, a species that has proven itself unable to win a war since 1945, and who seem to live mostly to retire and become wealthy in the employ of arms makers, other industrialists, and foreign governments. This week we heard the Commander of the U.S. Central Command, Army General Joseph Votel, tell a congressional committee that Iran is “the greatest long-term threat to stability” in the Middle East, and that, “We need to look at opportunities where we can disrupt through military means or other means their activities.” (1) Later in the week, FOX’s top-and-always-wrong retired general, Jack Keane, backed-up General Votel and said that, under the Trump administration, “We are finally going to hold Iran accountable.” (2) Mr. President, have you ever asked your genius generals — serving or retired — why, if Iran is such a terrible threat to the United States, they support the growing presence of U.S. military forces in Syria and Iraq that are nothing more than facilitators for the Iranian leaders’ campaign to establish Iran’s control from the Iran-Afghanistan border westward to the Mediterranean? Or, why they believe that the only entities capable of destroying the Iranian regime — the Islamic State, al-Qaeda, their allies, and the Gulf Arabs who fund them — should be defeated using the blood and limbs of U.S. soldiers and Marines in a campaign that will do nothing but ensure Iran’s hegemony? Get with the program, Mr. President, your generals are anything but America First; note their universal support for committing America to automatic war via NATO. You need to educate them to the fact that America First means as little war as possible, and no war ever to serve the interests of so-called friends —Saudi Arabia, other Arab Tyrants, NATO, and Israel — and known enemies, like Iran, Iraq, and Syria. There is, of course, no reason not to shoot to hell any Iranian naval ship or aircraft that is harassing or even nearing a U.S. Navy ship in the Persian Gulf. Otherwise, the course of wisdom is to just sit back and leave the slitting of Iran’s throat — and those of Syria and Hizballah — to those who are most eager and capable of doing so, the fiercely anti-Shia, Sunni mujahideen and their Arab-tyrant supporters.
  • Israel First: It is beyond me, Mr. President, to know whether you understand that there is a direct correlation between the manner in which you manage the U.S.-Israel relationship and the number of U.S. Marines, soldiers, and civilians killed and maimed by the mujahideen. The more you side with, arm, and fund Israel, the more Americans you will get killed. This was true when bin Laden declared war on the United States in 1996 and it is true today. It also is true that you, as president, are the only U.S. official who can limit the damage done to the republic and its people by this relationship. Save for Senator Paul, it would not be surprising to find that the other 534 members of the U.S. Congress are in the pay of one or another of the major Jewish-American political organizations, all of which you should immediately force to register as agents of a foreign power. (NB: Russia’s purported tampering in the 2016 election is nothing compared to the decades of manipulation of U.S. presidential and congressional elections by disloyal, Israel-First, Jewish-American citizens.) You will know, of course, that both Paul Ryan and Nancy Pelosi raced to the recent AIPAC conference to pledge their eternal allegiance to Israel’s interests, and this after they and their caucuses gave $38 billion of the money taken from U.S. taxpayers’ incomes to Israel. One might have thought, Mr. Trump, that that $38 billion would have helped pay for some of the infrastructure building, veterans’ care, and border-wall projects you promised. Would this amount not be helpful if spent in the interests of America First? So far, however, you have been nearly bellicose in your support for Israel, and you have sent there an ambassador whose loyalties lie entirely on the side of Israeli expansionism — and so war-causing — and therefore is a foe of U.S. interests and security. Whether or not Israel survives is of no relevance to the United States. It, like all other nations, has no right to exist and will continue to do so only on the basis of its own decisions and actions. The U.S. national government ought never to speak or act in a way that damages Israel’s absolute right to defend itself, but, more important, the national government ought to seek nothing but the kind of standard commercial and diplomatic relations with Israel that it seeks with all the other nation-states that are irrelevant to the republic’s survival, prosperity, and social cohesion.

The bottom line, Mr. President, is that there are no compromises possible with either the Republican or Democratic establishments because most of both are your enemies. Bipartisanship has long been dead because that process requires the existence of two distinct political parties, and today, on most issues, there is only one.

Your staggeringly difficult job, Sir, is to form and lead a strong and clear-sighted political entity that can be successful only if it neuters the Democrat-Republican monster, and then imposes upon its defeated, stinking carcass the will of the citizens who delivered the White House and their republic’s future into your hands. Time is short, Mr. President. While you dally with America’s enemies — most domestic, and mentioned above — and so strengthen the status quo, the party establishments, the mainstream media, and their super-rich allies are seeking to choke off your supporters’ access to the internet and social media, as well as their fair share of advertising revenue, both of which are nearly the only means that allow your message to reach your supporters. If they succeed in this effort, your own and the republic’s goose will be cooked. Time to get on the stick, Mr. Trump.


  1. http://www.cnbc.com/2017/03/29/general-calls-iran-destabilizing-force-suggests-us-disrupt-regime-by-military-means.html
  2. http://video.foxnews.com/v/5307261368001/?#sp=show-clips

Author: Michael F. Scheuer

Michael F. Scheuer worked at the CIA as an intelligence officer for 22 years. He was the first chief of its Osama bin Laden unit, and helped create its rendition program, which he ran for 40 months. He is an American blogger, historian, foreign policy critic, and political analyst.