Trump, Bolton and the Four Stooges

Clockwise from top left: Nicolas Maduro, Daniel Ortega, Miguel Diaz-Canel, Evo Morales.

14ymedio bigger14ymedio, Carlos Alberto Montaner, Miami, 4 November 2018 — It is about an implacable “electoral ploy.” That is what is behind this infernal screaming. It is absurd (and dangerous) to militarize the border with thousands of soldiers. It is also criminal to foment fear of foreigners, as Trump does, because it is politically profitable. John Kasich, Republican Governor of Ohio, was outraged in an interview with CNN. Al Cárdenas, former president of the Republican Party in Florida, responded with the same intensity in the face of the demagogic use of the images of a Mexican tried for murdering two policemen.

This is not done. Trump is going to destroy the Republican Party and then there will not be many people willing to defend fiscal moderation, the limits to the central government and the supremacy of free markets.

It is true that every country must take care of its borders, but the United States is a Republic of laws and neither he nor anyone can bypass the rules approved by Congress or international treaties signed by Washington. There are formal procedures that must be met.

If there is a right to petition for asylum, he has to respect it. Nor is it in Trump’s hands to snatch the citizenship of those born in the United States to foreign parents. It is an unconstitutional barbarity.

Not all of Trump’s actions, of course, are misguided. The appointment of diplomat John Bolton as head of the National Security Council was an intelligent maneuver. Bolton is a brilliant lawyer, Yale graduate, with a very long experience in international affairs and organizations. He has a Kantian vision of relations with other nations, founded on principles. He was one of the few heads that could replace General Herbert McMaster at the head of that organization. His work, and it is no small thing, will give meaning and form to the contradictory ideas and attitudes of Trump, a disconcerting person who admires Vladimir Putin and praises Kim Jong-un, while he (rightly) detests Nicolás Maduro.

John Bolton has just delivered one of his first keynote speeches. He has done it in Miami, in the Freedom Tower of Miami Dade College, the largest and most diverse university in the country (165,000 students, most of them Hispanic and African-American).

The event took place before Cuban-American congressmen Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, Mario Diaz-Balart, Carlos Curbelo and 250 other prominent people, among whom were Venezuelan exiles (Asdrúbal Aguiar) and Nicaraguans, along with Cuban-Americans Lincoln Díaz-Balart (former congressman), Modesto Maidique, former president of Florida International University, Frank Calzón, of the Center for a Free Cuba, and Marcell Felipe, leader of Inspire América, an organization that, increasingly, is becoming the informal representation of the most active Cuban community in the United States.

Bolton delineated what Trump’s Latin American policy will be. It will continue the offensive of trade restrictions and punishments against corrupt people and companies and those key to sustaining the dictatorships of Cuba, Venezuela and Nicaragua, whose leaders he called “the three stooges” of socialism (Moe, Larry and Curly), without specifying which one is which.

In reality there are four stooges, because he did not mention Evo Morales, the despot of Bolivia, a nation with political prisoners, murdered adversaries, exiles, corruption with impunity, Morales’s attempts to perpetuate himself in power against the will of the voters, and the rest of the symptoms of an unmitigated tyranny.

One of Trump-Bolton’s successes has been transferring another notable lawyer, Mauricio Claver-Carone from the IMF to the National Security Council and putting him at the head of the Western Hemisphere, which includes all of Latin America. For the United States, it was (and is) crazy that such an important region of the planet should not have its place among the priorities of Washington’s foreign policy.

Claver-Carone, who regularly monitored the activities of the Cuban regime, knows that the script of the aggressive dictatorships of 21st Century Socialism is written in Havana, even though Cuban diplomat and intelligence officer Jesus Arboleya diligently tries to cover the sun with a finger.

As in the comedies of the Three Stooges, there is always one who doles out the slaps. He is the Moe of this tragicomedy. Remember? He used to discipline his brothers. He had an abundance of black hair partedin the middle. That role today belongs to Miguel Díaz-Canel, the Cuban puppet president.


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