The muck at the bottom of stupidity’s deep barrel

Terry Glavin on Trump’s Putin-based explanation of the Russian role in Afghanistan:

We’re now at the half-way mark of Donald Trump’s term in the White House, and the relentless hum of his casual imbecilities, obscenities, banalities and outright fabrications has become so routine to the world’s daily dread that it is now just background noise in the ever-louder bedlam of America’s dystopian, freak-show political culture.

And yet, now and again, just when you think the president has scraped his fingers raw in the muck at the bottom of stupidity’s deep barrel, the man somehow manages to out-beclown himself. Such was the case this week, in a ramble of fatuous illiteracy that should drive home the point, to all of us, that the Office of the President of the United States of America is currently occupied by a genuinely dangerous maniac.

It does.

But then Trump went right off the deep end with a disquisition on the 1979 Soviet invasion of Afghanistan, and his remarks betrayed a perilous, gawping ignorance of the very reason why Afghanistan became such a lawless hellhole in the first place—which is how it came to pass that al-Qaeda found sanctuary there with the deranged Pakistani subsidiary that came to be called the Taliban, which is how al-Qaeda managed to plan and organize the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001—which is the very reason the American troops that Trump keeps saying he wants to bring home are still there at all.

“Russia used to be the Soviet Union. Afghanistan made it Russia, because they went bankrupt fighting in Afghanistan,” Trump began. “The reason Russia was in Afghanistan was because terrorists were going into Russia. They were right to be there. The problem is, it was a tough fight. And literally they went bankrupt; they went into being called Russia again, as opposed to the Soviet Union. You know, a lot of these places you’re reading about now are no longer part of Russia, because of Afghanistan.”

They were right to be there.

You can almost see Putin’s hand making his lips move.

You’ll want to let that sink in for a moment: on Wednesday, Jan. 2, 2019, Donald Trump endorsed a revisionist lunacy that is currently being championed by a bunch of cranks at the outermost neo-Stalinist fringe of Vladimir Putin’s ruling circle of oligarchs. They’ve already managed to cobble together a resolution in Russia’s Potemkin parliament that is to be voted on next month. It’s jointly sponsored by lawmakers from Putin’s United Russia and the still-existing Communist Party.

The resolution would overturn a declaration adopted by the Congress of People’s Deputies at the time of Soviet communism’s unravelling in 1989, 10 years after the Soviets’ catastrophic dismembering of Afghanistan. The 1989 resolution frankly declared that the Soviet invasion and the nine-year war the Soviets prosecuted in Afghanistan deserved “moral and political condemnation.” The 1989 resolution was signed by Mikhail Gorbachev himself, who at the time was chairman of the Supreme Soviet.

Well now who are you gonna believe, Gorbachev or Donnie Twoscoops?

The resolution slammed the former Soviet leaders Leonid Brezhnev, Yuri Andropov, Andrei Gromyko and Dimitri Ustinov for turning Afghanistan into an apocalyptic wasteland of more than a million corpses and forcing a third of the Afghan population to flee the country as refugees, costing as well the lives of 15,000 Soviet soldiers, for good measure.

Not that there’s anything wrong with that.

And now, Donald Trump, the president of the United States, is saying Gorbachev was wrong, and Brezhnev, Andropov, Gromyko and Ustinov were right, and so are Vladimir Putin’s creepy neo-Stalinist revisionists.

He belongs to Putin.

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