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Congressman asks Trump if Syria attack was a "head fake" to provide cover for Russian sanctions relief

California Democratic Rep. Jared Huffman has some strong words and scary questions for Donald Trump about the missile attack on Syria, via Facebook: Mr. President, you’re learning the hard way that navigating difficult policy issues from healthcare to foreign policy is actually complicated. That’s especially true with the myriad of conflicts and crises we face […]

By Kaili Joy Gray - April 07, 2017
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Donald Trump

Mr. President, you’re learning the hard way that navigating difficult policy issues from healthcare to foreign policy is actually complicated. That’s especially true with the myriad of conflicts and crises we face on the world stage.

But you cannot lead the free world by being impulsive, unilateral, and unpredictable. You have signaled for months that the US doesn’t care about humanitarian and moral issues. You’ve completely ignored a massive humanitarian crisis in east Africa that threatens starvation and death for 20 million people – in fact, you’ve proposed deep cuts to humanitarian aid that would make it worse. You’ve turned your back on desperate refugees fleeing Assad’s war crimes in Syria. You’ve signaled that Russia and Assad are free to do whatever they want because it’s not our fight – almost inviting more atrocities in Syria and beyond. And now you suddenly change your mind — but it’s not clear if it’s just this once, or something more.

Was it the images of dying Syrian babies, even though you ignored prior images of dying Syrian babies and all of the dying African babies? Was it politics – perhaps your historically low poll numbers and complete lack of accomplishment in your first 11 weeks as President? Was it the fact that oil prices will now magically go up, a boon to your fossil fuel cronies? Or was it something else – a head fake vis-à-vis Russia in advance of Tillerson’s trip, to provide cover for the sanctions relief your team has been pursuing ever since before the election?

We shouldn’t have to ask these questions about our President, but with this President, I’m afraid we do. We have far more questions than answers after last night’s airstrikes. And it underscores, among other things, why Congress must reassert its authority over war decisions as called for by our Constitution.

The congressman is right, of course. We should not have to ask these questions of our president. But Trump is no ordinary president. His constant lying, his refusal to offer evidence for outrageous claims, and the growing evidence of his campaign’s collusion with Russia to affect the outcome of the 2016 election all leave us no choice but to ask these questions — and demand real answers.


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