A year of Trump. A nightmare year in which the nonsensical has happened – and escalated – as the investigations that link the American president with the Russian government continue to advance. Trump’s incomprehensible decisions, which, given their nature, fill the headlines, have occurred just at the moments when he would have preferred to deflect media attention from the investigation.
Some of the investigation will end up involving him. That is why he doesn't believe in them, and prefers to side with the Russian president instead of his own intelligence agencies. His statements last weekend show nothing but desperation. A year since the election that brought him to power, there is little to celebrate for a president whose proposed changes cannot even find consensus among his supporters; a president who has demonstrated his limited capacity as an executive and negotiator, which supposedly were his main attributes, and who has the world on the brink of environmental collapse and thermonuclear war. America is not great again.
Not great again, at all. The world has lost respect for a nation that not only seems to hate other nations, but also hates itself with a chilling bitterness that is unleashed in schools, shopping malls, concerts, churches and on its own streets. It is a bitterness that Donald Trump doesn't hesitate to celebrate with his angry decrees, his racist policies and his support of white supremacists. The world has lost respect for a nation whose president seems to bend before his greatest political and economic enemies, and who seems subservient and accommodating to Russia and China. The world has lost respect for the most powerful nation in the world and for Trump's childish responses to threats from North Korea. The mere fact that the U.S. president uses, in an official way, the terms "short and fat" to insult the leader of another nation not only poses an unnecessary risk, but also reflects an erosion of the presidency that none of his predecessors would have allowed. Trump is a man who divides, internally and externally, white and black, conservatives and liberals, deplorables versus “fake news,” Brexit and the European Union, individual treaties and regional agreements, and bad men for whom it is necessary to build a wall.
This is a year that could be the last if the investigations into the Russian hacking continue down the path they seem to be following, and if U.S. intelligence agencies take Trump’s remarks as a personal affront and respond immediately. Trump has shot himself in the foot in a completely unnecessary way, challenging the wrong enemy and undermining – even more – his credibility on the road. With the speed at which facts are being presented, it is more than likely that the situation will escalate and new events will arise in the coming days; new events that, as is also likely, Trump will try to drown with his paralyzing habit of tweets and decrees that the magician in the White House has used to keep his base at bay. There is a firm base that shares the generalized hatred that Trump doles out, and that not only blindly believes in whatever measure he approves, but is willing to applaud them the crueler they seem. Anything can happen: We live in times when a whim – and the desperation – of an old senile man can cause the same thing, the death of millions of people from nuclear war, an environmental disaster, or the massive deportation of innocent young people. All in the week that NAFTA negotiations continue.
Are we really still talking about small planes?*
*Editor’s note: This final sentence is an apparent reference to Trump’s reported comment that the airplane belonging to Kuwaiti leader Emir Sabah al-Ahmad al Jaber al-Sabah was larger than Trump’s airplane during the Kuwaiti leader’s visit to Washington in September.