Time For Another Edition Of 'If Obama Had Done That,' Starring Mike Pompeo!
Hello, Wonkers! After a week of being away thanks to Hurricane Dorian (yay for living in southeast United States!), we return this week with
acting Secretary of State and "heat-seeking missile for Trump's ass" Mike Pompeo. Appearing on EVERY Sunday show, Pompeo was there to explain this sudden tweet from the president:
That's right, it seems President "Pussy Ass Bitch" (that's not Wonkette calling him that, you need to click that link if you don't know the context yet) decided to announce 24 hours ago that apparently he was gonna secretly host Taliban leaders on Camp David just four days away from the 18th anniversary of the 9/11 attacks. Trump went on to say the cancellation of his invitation on Saturday night was due to the
car bombing in Kabul on Thursday that killed 10 civilians, one Romanian soldier and US Army Sergeant 1st Class Elis A. Barreto Ortiz from Puerto Rico. In an otherwise honest (or at least more trusted) administration, this reasoning for cancelling a meeting with Taliban leaders would make sense. Or at least, it would seem so, if not for some key things:
- 2019 has already been the deadliest year for since 2014 for U.S. Troops in Afghanistan, well before the attack on September 5, and throughout the entire time Trump was inviting Taliban leaders to meet with him on US soil.
- Why were the Taliban coming to Camp David to meet Trump without having a locked deal or at very least a ceasefire well before Saturday? Oh yeah, because this president likes to meet with (and suck up to) the world's worst actors without giving them anything in return.
- Why meet the Taliban, which harbored Osama bin Laden/al-Qaida before and immediately after 9/11, on the week of the 18th anniversary of that attack? Is that not at the very least highly tacky?
All these seemed reasonable questions, which the various Sunday show hosts posed to Mike Pompeo without receiving an adequate answer. So let's look at how Pompeo stammered under questioning from Jake Tapper on CNN's "State of the Union":
Secretary Pompeo: Trump administration still interested in Taliban peace dealwww.youtube.com
TAPPER: And when did you find out that the Taliban were coming here, and when did you find out the meeting had been canceled?
POMPEO: Well, we've been working on those for a while. [...] We're going to walk away from a deal if others try to use violence to achieve better ends in the negotiations. It's not right. It's not appropriate. It killed an American. And it made no sense for the Taliban to be rewarded for that kind of bad behavior.
TAPPER: The Taliban have obviously been doing these kinds of attacks and killing U.S. service members and innocent civilians for a generation, as you note. What is different about the murder of the 16th U.S. service member this year, as opposed to the previous 15?
POMPEO: We've been working on this peace and reconciliation program for quite some time. And we had made real progress.
Apparently not, since the Taliban was killing Americans before, during and after Pompeo's " brilliant" negotiations. But guess we can't invite the Taliban without a few broken Americans, right Pompeo? Tapper once again tried to ask a very simple question:
TAPPER: You know, it was just a few weeks ago -- and I'm sure you're -- you're well aware of this -- it was just a few weeks ago that the Taliban put out a video in which they supported the 9/11 attacks, reiterating their support for the 9/11 attacks, blaming it -- blaming the 9/11 attacks on the United States and foreign policy. I guess the question would be, here is an organization that still supports 9/11, still believes that the United States was to blame, we brought that on ourselves. Why bring people like that to Camp David? I understand why you want to negotiate for peace, but why bring people like that to Camp David?
Pompeo muttered about attempting peace and used the death of Sergeant First Class Barreto as a shield when Tapper called out Pompeo's (and most of the GOP's) hypocrisy on this:
TAPPER: I -- I can't help but think that, if a Democratic president had talked about having the Taliban come to Camp David to negotiate a peace process that was not already a done deal that you, as a congressman, as a -- as a -- as a soldier, as a veteran, as a West Point graduate, that you would be rather upset.
POMPEO: Yes, Jake, you're just wrong about that.
Oh, ARE WE? We actually already know the answer as The Intercept's Mehdi Hasan pointed out on Twitter:
Remember: just a few weeks ago, Trump, Crenshaw and other Republicans were inciting hate against Omar by (falsely)… https://t.co/m2AYS5eaDC— Mehdi Hasan (@Mehdi Hasan) 1567996282.0
The GOP has weaponized 9/11 to increase government in the worst way (ICE, DHS, Patriot Act), excuse Islamophobia/xenophobia (like Pompeo's 2010 congressional campaign tweeting praise for an article calling his opponent a
"turban topper"), and used it as a cudgel for nationalism disguised as patriotism. ("Make America Great Again", "America First," you know the slogans.) When 9/11 can be used to smear Rep. Ilhan Omar or President Obama (despite his administration, you know, killing bin Laden), or for shitty former New York mayors to run failed presidential bids ("a noun, a verb and 9/11"), the GOP NEVER FORGETS. But when it comes to helping 9/11 first responders, it takes former Daily Show host shaming them to get them to pretend to give a shit.
Because this is the Sunday rundown, we get to wildly change the subject all of a sudden at the end, so here is ANOTHER entirely unrelated stupid thing uttered on the Sunday shows, this time by former Chicago mayor and Obama chief of staff Rahm Emanuel on ABC's "This Week with George Stephanopoulos":
EMANUEL: We have taken a position so far, and the candidates have, through the process -- a few have not -- about -- on basically Medicare For All, which is, we're going to eliminate 150 million people's health care, and we're going to provide health care for people that have just come over the border. That is an untenable position for the general election. […] Nobody at a diner ran at me and said, take my healthcare away. Nobody. This is -- this is reckless as it relates to -- and you don't have to take the position to win the primary. And you're basically literally hindering yourself for the general election.
Hey, Rahm, two things:
- Can you stop using bad GOP talking points?
- You realize ALL Americans will be covered, including those 150 million you cited, by "Medicare For All"? They are not just being dropped with zero coverage, Emanuel. In other words, please refer to Thing #1.
And that is it for your Sunday rundown!
Have a week!
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Your friendly neighborhood Puerto Rican Political Freelance Writer for @wonkette. Pop Culture observer, Amateur Movie reviewer & Comics fan. Former Active Duty Marine. All opinions are mine only.