[COMMENTARY]: Donald Trump’s Inebriated Ultimatums Imperil the Entire Planet
President Donald Trump, high on dexamethasone, delivered a hostile message to Iran during his Friday “radio rally” on The Rush Limbaugh Show:
If you f*ck around with us, if you do something bad to us, we are going to do things to you that have never been done before.
Harsh rhetoric directed at Iran is nothing new for Trump. One of his proudest actions as commander in chief was ghosting on the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, colloquially known as the “Iran nuclear deal,” which was negotiated by President Barack Obama.
JCPOA was ratified by a coalition of nations – including Iran – and was designed to prevent Iran from developing nuclear weapons. Despite Iran’s adherence to the agreement, Trump tore it up, mostly because he hates his predecessor.
“If I win we’ll have a great deal with Iran within one month,” Trump said during his call with Limbaugh. He has made this pledge before but has yet to follow through with anything except more threats and intimidation. There is no plan.
As with so many other things Trump does, there exists accompanying prophetic tweets.
Incredibly, seven years ago today, on October 9, 2012, Trump made this prediction:
“Now that Obama’s numbers are in tailspin – watch for him to launch a strike in Lybia or Iran. He is desperate.”
Now that Obama’s poll numbers are in tailspin – watch for him to launch a strike in Libya or Iran. He is desperate.
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) October 9, 2012
Eleven months later, on September 16, 2013, Trump repeated himself:
“I predict that President Obama will at some point attack Iran in order to save face.”
I predict that President Obama will at some point attack Iran in order to save face!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) September 16, 2013
That Trump belongs to his own unique class of projection is something to which we have all, regrettably, become narcotized. What we are not accustomed to internalizing is having a manic president, infected with a plague, buzzed on a potion of performance-enhancing drugs, coming to grips with how financially, legally, and politically screwed he is.
What we are witnessing is the Trump presidency in its death throes, and it presents an unprecedented danger to every living thing on Earth.
Trump’s current trajectory is toward utter madness – and there is no reason to believe that he will improve if he is reelected or manipulates his way into a second term.
Even if Trump is defeated in next month’s election, he would remain in office with his unilateral authority over the American nuclear arsenal intact for an additional 10 weeks – and that is a best case scenario.
A few days ago, an editorial was published in the The Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists – a publication consisting of some of the most brilliant scientific minds on the planet – that in no uncertain terms demanded that Trump be stripped of this power:
To state the obvious, we should not entrust nuclear launch authority to someone who is not fully lucid. (Reagan transferred authority temporarily before planned surgery, as did President George W. Bush before a medical procedure that required his sedation.) A nuclear crisis can happen at any time, including at the worst possible time. If such a crisis takes place when a president’s thinking is compromised for any reason, the results could be catastrophic.
For example, imagine that the president is alerted to an incoming nuclear missile attack. He would have just minutes to decide what to do before the attack, if real, would land. Even in the best of circumstances there would be tremendous pressure to launch land-based ballistic missiles (which are highly vulnerable) immediately. He would need all of his wits about him to understand that he should not launch these weapons. Why? Because any alert of a nuclear attack is likely to be a false alarm, and once launched our missiles cannot be recalled. If the president orders an attack in response to a false alarm, he would have started nuclear war by mistake.
The “nuclear football,” a suitcase-sized device that follows the president everywhere, contains the launch sequences necessary to fire atomic weapons at a moment’s notice. Only the president knows the codes, and no one can countermand an order to strike. Once the command is executed, it is irreversible. Game over.
Trump’s inebriated ultimatums are perilously proliferating the prospects of nuclear armageddon.
This is not typically a topic of public discussion among the media or politicians. But it should be, because the American population is far from uninformed.
My generation – frequently referred to as “millennials” – is among the fastest-growing voting bloc in the country. We were educated and raised by people who came of age during the arms race between the United States and the Soviet Union. Thus, engrained within us, is a keen awareness that there are thousands of ballistic missiles strategically positioned around the world, pointed toward the sky and prepared to instantaneously obliterate entire cities.
We seldom discuss it amongst ourselves, however, none of us would ever deny that mushroom clouds have poked our psyches.
In January, The Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists announced that the Doomsday Clock ticked forward to 100 hundred seconds to midnight, the closest to 12:00 it has ever been since its conception in 1947.
The climate change crisis, which is unquestionably a consequence of human activity, can be mitigated. The global devastation wrought by battling with atomic bombs cannot.
Our survival – not just as a republic, but as a civilization and a species – may hinge on the dalliances of a sundowning 74-year-old sociopath with unfettered license to initiate the apocalypse.
This president of the United States cannot be entrusted to wield the most destructive armaments ever engineered by human beings.