After their initial meeting in the Oval Office after the November 8 election, the then President-elect Trump told President Obama that he would welcome the president’s counsel in the future. That promise did not last long. Instead, Trump took to Fox News’s “Fox and Friends” to denounce Obama for being behind a shadowy conspiracy to place angry protesters within the audiences at Republican congressional lawmakers’ town hall meetings.
Without offering any evidence, as is his usual modus operandi, Trump said of the protests, “I think that President Obama is behind it . . . because his people are certainly behind it.” Trump also blamed Obama for a series of White House leaks. He said that “some of the leaks, possibly come from that group [Obama loyalists], some of the leaks—which are really very serious leaks because they’re very bad in terms of national security.”
Trump has also made intemperate remarks about former president Jimmy Carter. During the campaign, Trump said of Carter, “He [Obama] is the single best thing to ever happen to Jimmy Carter because a lot of people are no longer looking at Jimmy Carter as our worst president.” What Trump fails to understand is that a disloyal CIA helped remove Carter from office in 1980 as a result of a secret “October Surprise” deal, in which U.S. arms were traded to Iran for no hostages in return until after the November election. The failure of Carter to negotiate a hostage release prior to the election sealed his fate. The CIA is also poised to remove Trump from power the moment the president gives them a reason and opportunity to do so.
Trump has shown that he is willing to blame anyone but himself for all of the ills that have befallen his newly-minted administration. This is the usual tell-tale sign of fascism: blaming others for things over which the accused have no control or influence.
Adolf Hitler blamed the previous Weimar government of Germany for the nation’s hyperinflation and economic collapse. However, it was the imperial Kaiser’s government that plunged Germany into World War I, thus resulting in the imposition by the victorious Allies of usurious war payments by Germany, resulting from the Versailles Treaty. But, Hitler needed a scapegoat and he chose to pin all of Germany’s economic woes on the Weimar Republic and, of course, his favorite target, “the Jews.”
Spain’s fascist dictator Generalissimo Francisco Franco blamed all of Spain’s problems during the Great Depression on the Popular Front government of the Spanish Second Republic, which was made up of republicans, socialists, syndicalists, and communists. Taking a page from Hitler’s book, Franco blamed Spain’s economic problems on communists, Jews, and Freemasons.
Chile’s brutal dictator General Augusto Pinochet blamed his predecessor Eduardo Frei for allowing the left-wing of Frei’s Christian Democratic Party to split off and support Socialist Salvador Allende, thus ensuring Allende’s presidential victory in 1970. Pinochet ousted Allende in a 1973 coup that saw the assassination of Allende and the later medical assassination of Frei: both carried out on Pinochet’s orders.
In Brazil and Argentina, neo-fascist presidents Michel Temer and Mauricio Macri (the latter a friend of Trump), cast blame for their nations’ problems on their two immediate socialist predecessors, Dilma Rousseff and Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner. Temer and Macri would also like to put their female predecessors in prison. Trump has often stated that he would like to see his presidential election opponent, Hillary Clinton, put in prison amid cheers of “lock her up” from his rabid supporters.
That’s how fascists roll.
Hitler and his henchmen also blamed Germany’s newspapers for adding to the nation’s problems. Hitler and Joseph Goebbels called the opposition news media the “lügenpresse,” which means the “lying press.” Lying press/lying media: where have we heard that recently?
Trump believes that there is something nefarious behind anyone or anything that disagrees with his policies. Protesters want to keep their health insurance coverage, Social Security, and Medicare intact and put their elected representatives on the spot. For Trump, it’s “Obama’s doing.” The press wants answers and not endless talking point rhetoric from White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer. For Obama, it’s “fake news” and the “lying media.”
Trump has surrounded himself with admirers of fascism, including his chief strategist Stephen Bannon, the former editor of Breitbart News. Breitbart and its alt-right clones constantly issue forth incendiary propaganda designed to stir up nationalist and racist fervor among Trump’s ardent loyalists. Many observers believed that Trump would moderate his extremist views when faced with the awesome responsibilities that come with the presidency. In fact, Trump’s rhetoric is becoming even more extreme.
Previously published in the Wayne Madsen Report.
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Wayne Madsen is a Washington, DC-based investigative journalist and nationally-distributed columnist. He is the editor and publisher of the Wayne Madsen Report (subscription required).