Tuesday, January 31

The Unpredictability and Sanity of President Donald Trump

Now that Donald Trump is the new president of the United States, many voters in the US and people all over the world are beginning to question the sanity and unpredictability of the new president. There have been a large number of articles on the net written by psychologists of all specialties on President Donald Trump’s sanity.

Naturally those who support Trump blindly in the desperate hope of radical change in the US from the previous Obama Administration were jubilant at his winning the presidential election. Many Trump supporters are accusing the media of a witch-hunt and the left inclined voters of mass hysteria against him. They view Trump as almost a godsend for the people of the US. He has made many promises of making America great once again after the “foreign countries have bled America dry” because of billions of dollars spent on help to foreign countries by the previous administration. Trump, in his inauguration speech, has stated that this aid will stop. The big question is: Will this sweeping statement apply to the billions of dollars aid that the previous administration has given to Israel’s security? Will Israel be exempted from Trump’s blanket statement on US foreign aid? There are no answers to these questions, especially from a president that is very unpredictable and of questionable sanity.

President Donald Trump signed an executive order on Friday that put a four-month hold on allowing refugees into the United States and temporarily barred travelers from Syria and six other countries.1 

These seven countries are listed under section 217(a)(12) of the INA, 8 U.S.C. 1187(a)(12) of the U.S. code, and it is this code that Trump's executive order cited while banning citizens of those nations. 2

Who would have thought that President Trump would override the Constitution in his desire to sign an order to close all airports to entry of Muslim citizens of the US on their return from oversea, including their families and travelers who have visas and are legally entitled to entry into the US? The acting Attorney General of the US, Sally Bates, was fired for speaking out against Trump’s travel ban and not because of the change from previous Obama Administration to the present Trump Administration. Trump pundits will say that she was relieved of her post because of change in the administration from Obama to Trump. This is not the case here. She questioned the legality of the Executive Order signed by Trump. It is obvious that if you question Trump’s Executive Orders, whether you are a Trump appointee or not you will be on the firing line. Below is her letter to the Justice Department Attorneys on Trump’s Travel Ban:

“On January 27, 2017, the President signed an Executive Order regarding immigrants and refugees from certain Muslim-majority countries. The order has now been challenged in a number of jurisdictions. As the Acting Attorney General, it is my ultimate responsibility to determine the position of the Department of Justice in these actions.

My role is different from that of the Office of Legal Counsel (OLC), which, through administrations of both parties, has reviewed Executive Orders for form and legality before they are issued. OLC’s review is limited to the narrow question of whether, in OLC’s view, a proposed Executive Order is lawful on its face and properly drafted. Its review does not take account of statements made by an administration or it surrogates close in time to the issuance of an Executive Order that may bear on the order’s purpose. And importantly, it does not address whether any policy choice embodied in an Executive Order is wise or just.

Similarly, in litigation, DOJ Civil Division lawyers are charged with advancing reasonable legal arguments that can be made supporting an Executive Order. But my role as leader of this institution is different and broader. My responsibility is to ensure that the position of the Department of Justice is not only legally defensible, but is informed by our best view of what the law is after consideration of all the facts. In addition, I am responsible for ensuring that the positions we take in court remain consistent with this institution’s solemn obligation to always seek justice and stand for what is right. At present, I am not convinced that the defense of the Executive Order is consistent with these responsibilities nor am I convinced that the Executive Order is lawful.

Consequently, for as long as I am the Acting Attorney General, the Department of Justice will not present arguments in defense of the Executive Order, unless and until I become convinced that it is appropriate to do so.”
President Donald Trump proudly showing his signature to the executive order -the Travel Ban

The travel ban has caused much pain and difficulty for innocent Muslim travelers (many of whom are US Citizens and many non-citizens have legal visas for entry into the US) and their families at airports all over the US. The excuse - they compromise US security by being Muslims who happen to be born in the 7 Muslim States that have been blacklisted by Trump as security threats. The US has every right to screen people from countries that are a terror threat to the US before granting them visas of entry. However, once they have been screened and granted visas, it is unacceptable morally to refuse them entry on the grounds of their religious denomination. This applies to refugees as well.

Moreover, a report released this week shows that Muslim Americans with family backgrounds in those seven countries have killed no Americans over the last 15 years.
Twenty-three percent of the Muslim Americans involved with violent extremist plots since Sept. 11, 2001, had family backgrounds in Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria or Yemen, according to a Triangle Center on Terrorism and Homeland Security report released this week. None of those plots resulted in American deaths.
Similarly, none of the 19 plane hijackers on 9/11 were from any of those seven countries. 

What about Mexico and the security wall that Trump wishes to build with Mexican money to keep Mexicans out?

The president of Mexico has canceled a state visit to Washington, and prominent Mexican leaders say that Trump's border wall plans “could take us to a war — not a trade war.”3 

Can you imagine what would happen if Israel built a security fence using Palestinian Tax money for that purpose? Even Israel never stooped to that low level. The cherry on the Mexican cake is PM Bibi Netanyahu’s tweet supporting Trump’s decision on the wall. Mexico’s Foreign Minister called in Israel’s Ambassador for a dressing down over the matter.    

PM Netanyahu should not have sent the tweet on this matter It was unnecessary and in very bad taste.

It appears that the Government Coalition in Israel is ecstatic over President Trump. The fact that he appears sympathetic to the right wing settler enterprise in the occupied territories and his declaration of moving the American Embassy to Jerusalem is lovely music to the present Israeli leadership. They expect a carte blanche from the Trump Administration to do what they like in the territories. Even the new incoming US Ambassador, David Friedman, is on record as supporting the settler movement by donations in his own private capacity. What the Israeli leadership does not seem to take into consideration is the unpredictability of President Donald Trump.

President Donald Trump must be treated with suspicion by Israel as he is not what he seems to be. There are many faces to Trump. A healthy, discreet distance between the Israeli Government and the Trump Administration will be a positive direction. His macabre relationship with President Vladimir Putin of Russia is also ominous. He will be ruling America as if it is his own business enterprise. 


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