FRANK TALK BY NNANNA IKE

DONALD TRUMP AND THE

LIMITS OF FAR RIGHT NATIONALISM

Ever since Donald trump assumed office as the United States of America’s President after a controversial electoral outcome that saw him defeating Hillary Clinton through the electoral college system even though the latter had defeated him in the majority votes, every of his policy actions seemed to be enmeshed in one controversy or the other.

To be sure, Trumps pronouncements, actions and policy drives are informed by a very strong far right ideological leaning. Such bent, in the main seeks to protect the interests of America’s super rich, white Americans, the American nation, Western civilization and so on. Such leaning that sees the world from a stratified view with the third world being at the bottom ladder can only mean little or no interest on such countries like Nigeria. Trump also cast the image of an uncouth politician who has no respect for political opponents as well as those others he regards as inferior. It is for this reason that he can refer to the highly respected Hillary Clinton as a criminal just he referred to Nigerians as
living in shitholes.

Such viewpoint as was aptly captured in his campaign slogan “To make America Great” is only a veiled reference to his rabid far right nationalism. Trumps eloquence, confidence and courage seems to have eminently qualified him as the leading Knight for the revival of far right white nationalism which was almost brought to its knees by Ex- President Obama’s eight years of Democratic Party’s liberal policies.

Since Trump arrived the white House, he seems to be possessed by a certain messianic quest to advance the interest of the far right ideologues. The checklist is long and varied. Take his immigration policies. Since day one when the white folks arrived the land of the Native Americans whom Christopher Columbus ignorantly referred to as the “red Indians”, the United States of America has been established as a welcoming place for immigrants seeking for freedom. Freedom includes freedom from religious persecution, political tyranny and economic freedom. But Trump and his co white ideologues don’t want any of such shit, if we are to use an American jargon. His current battle to stop the influx of migrants from the Latin American countries of Honduras and Guatemala is just a product of such mind-set. His battle with the immigrants came with a peculiar Trump touch. He wants to build a border wall across the Mexican border that will cost the US tax payers nearly $7 billion. The Democratic controlled Congress will not have any of that, so that battle is still raging. It has however brought out an ugly side of the immigration cauldron, which is the state separation of toddlers from their parents.

While this ugly side of the Trump’s polices was being exposed, he did a quick turn that will severely upset the world balance of forces. Firstly he unilaterally pulled out of the Iran Nuclear deal declaring it as “the worst deal anybody could have entered into”. His next attention was the unilateral recognition of Israel as the capital of the Jewish nation and the annexation of both the Golan Heights and the West Bank. There is no doubt that Trumps unilateral policies in the Middle East are already setting the volatile region into a new wave of crises. While the furor generated by all these was still raging, he took on the North Koreans cancelling all negotiations reached that were intent on discouraging the Koreans from further development of nuclear weapons. While his cat and mouse game was going on with the Koreans, he suddenly turned his bullish gaze into China declaring a trade war with the giant Asian nation.

Trumps bent towards Authoritarianism have attracted a lot of criticism. Adam Gopnik, the New York Post staff writer has in his new book “A thousand Small Sanities” asserted that “Trump’s new authoritarianism has brought liberalism to its lowest ebb in American history”. Trumps unilaterism has also throne most of his western allies off balance. In fact almost all his allies don’t know what to do with him excepting those of his ideological ilk like the Hungarian President Orban. Trump’s anti thesis however still remain the Democratic Party controlled Congress under the leadership of the experienced and shrewd Nancy Pelosi. The Congress has since been engaged in a battle of wits with President Trump over several of his far right wing policies. The Congress has even taken the battle down to Donald Trump’s inner most chamber by opening up investigations into Trumps company.

Taxes and business dealings with Russia. As at the last count his son, Trump Jnr. has been soapened to testify in the Congress over such matters. A lot of hot heads in the Congress are keen on impeaching President Trump should he be found culpable. meanwhile Trump is still carrying on as if the Congressional investigations do not matter. He is rather busy engaging Iran and China in two of his latest quarrels with perceived adversaries .Who
blinks first, Congress or Trump. Its only time that will tell. Meanwhile the trade war with China is already adversely affecting American farmers and consumers, two of his very important support base. Some discerning observers see Trump’s far right nationalism as a driving force for the global white nationalism that is on the upswing. Such observers attribute incidents such as the Christchurch shooting in New Zealand, the synagogue shooting in California and a general rise in anti-Semitism as evidence of this new white nationalism. Hopefully American democracy that has been built around strong institutions is strong enough to contain Trumps new wave authoritarianism. There certainly must be a limit to far right nationalism.

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