Christopher G. Moore
Trump’s Foreign Ace in the hole
Foreign powers seeking to increase their influence, find a civil war an expedite shortcut. Desperation makes negotiations hard on besieged forces to make a good deal. Combatants in any civil war require a ready, reliable supply of weapons and supplies to prevent defeat. Civil Wars are often long, drawn out conflicts. The side which runs out of resources loses. From the polls, it is apparent that Trump and his domestic allies find themselves in a position of weakness. How to recapture lost ground? How to survive in a political climate that is turning against you? The options are limited. The ultimate one when an elites survival is at stake is to find more powerful allies.
American history has its story on foreign power intervention. The USA domestic civil war soon mutated into a battleground where foreign powers seek to gain influence and power. G While officially Britain were neutral during the first Civil War (1861–1865), that masks the real story. The British elites were sympathetic to the Southern cause. The American South were a major market to purchase cotton for both the British and French textiles industry. Both leaned toward supporting the South for economic reasons.
The moral issue raised in the call to abolish Slavery (which Britain had done with the Slavery Abolition Act, (1833)) didn’t prevent the British government for opening their shipyards to Southern rebels for repair and maintenance. States have interest. Morality is relied upon when it serves that interest, when it interferes with the interest of State, it is sidelined in the name of power.
A short essay doesn’t allow the space to document all of the civil wars since 1950 that the USA has intervened, directly or indirectly, to influence the outcome. From Argentina, Vietnam, Lebanon, Somalia, Chile, Panama, Nicaragua, Dominican Republic, Yemen, Haiti, to Cuba Americans have intervened into conflicts of other countries on the side that advanced American interest. This history of American foreign policy follows a 2,500 year history handed down from Thucydides’ Melos dialogue. As a lesson in real politics, Thucydides point of view prevails: the strong do what they can, the weak suffer what they must. The position of strong and weak can easily be switched. Athens fate at the hands of Sparta is the epilogue to the Melos dialogue.
What is possible is never inevitable. Should Trump’s militarization of policing and the use of federal state forces against protestors and demonstrators in Portland with plans announced to expand without disclosing name, rank, unit camouflaged troops to be sent to major urban areas such as Chicago, Detroit, and Philadelphia. The Trump regime seeks to control with force urban centers under elected officials who are Democrats. Such White House sanctioned action is an indication of the escalation that leads to a larger conflict.
In July 2020, we’ve entered the initial phase of the conflict which provides an inviting opportunity for foreign powers to choose a side. There is evidence such intervention happened with Russia siding with the Republicans to influence the outcome of the 2016 election.
Four years later, who else would lend support and comfort to Trump and the Republicans as the spiral of violence begins? Black Lives Matter was the beginning of a broad range resistance to Trump’s governance. What would these alliances look like? While difficult to predict, it is reasonable to expect a combination of greater and lesser illiberal States would render aid and support to Trump.
A potential list of Trump allies: China, Russia, Hungry, Poland, Brazil, and the Philippines. What would be the nature of that aid? Weapons, medical supplies, food, oil would be on the list. A place of exile in order to continue waging the civil war from afar. This is one short step away from sending advisers to the beleaguered battlegrounds where the Trump forces were in danger of being overrun.
Ask yourself this question, if Trump continues to provoke violence and it appears his chances of winning the election are diminishingly small, would he call on his list of allies to provide help? What better way to end the American experiment than open a pathway in the direction of a Syria like outcome? The ruling dictator survives, hundreds of thousands dead, cities reduced to rubble, and the Russia’s influence has increased.
How compromised is American intel network under Trump to monitor, record, expose and react to foreign intervention? Or to ask the question the other way around, given the record of Trump’s advisers to cozy up and rely on Russian help in 2016, is it possible the State Department has institutionalized a channel for the doomsday scenario: the day Trump is defeated at the 2020 polls. The Russians have an investment to protect. China has every reason to assist in the demise of the USA as a functioning democracy. The lesser ultra-right leadership in other countries would rally around Trump who shares their philosophy of governing. Does the resistance believe that Trump’s government would function to keep foreigners from assisting it to stay in power?
Trust is shattered in America. Once the possibility of unity, a shared common ground is lost, anger and hatred fill the void. The only light to be emitted from that place of darkness is muzzle flash from nearby guns.
We should remember that the Spanish Civil War was a trial run between Russia and German forces, each which took a side. The foreigners blend in with the camouflaged troops. Camouflage is the Trojan Horse. We couldn’t ever be sure if they were foreigners or locals.
America is gradually descending into such a contemporary battleground. Each escalation by Trump is another step to increase the conflict. No country believes intense partisan disagreements could ignite an outbreak of violence that would spin out of control. In Portland, Trump, playing game show host, has struck a match while looking for a pool of gasoline to throw it in. When despots are cornered they become desperate. They will do anything to save their own hide.
Worst case scenario: The Second Civil War might feature Germany and France on one side, and Russia and China on the other. With Boris Johnson seeking to sell weapons to all sides. If that would be the case, like the Spanish, the Americans would find life in the middle one of death, destruction and misery. We’ve gone from the time of Orwell and Franco to the Clown Car Era of Hannity and Trump. You can’t turn your eyes away from watching the car in front of you is veering out of control. No one would laugh at this Clown Car going over the side of the mountain. Because the rest of us are in the backseat holding our breath.