With a possible few exceptions, Republicans in the House and Senate have known from the get-go that Trump is a walking time bomb, a well-lit fuse that could explode at any time on any given day.
But the ubiquitous polls told them Trump had an iron grip on his base. So they pretended otherwise. They may have pretended so well that they actually convinced themselves.
No matter. The jig is up.
In the aftermath of a single phone call with Turkey strongman Erdogan, Trump abruptly announced that the U.S. would be leaving town, abandoning the Kurds who — in the thousands — had died to help us defeat ISIS. Never mind that the Kurds had trusted us, that we had promised to protect them in exchange for their sacrifice, and that we were leaving them defenseless, vulnerable to almost certain slaughter.
Trump walked away from our allies as easily as if he were stiffing a room full of building contractors.
Trump has repeatedly bragged that he is a “very stable genius,” who knows more about everything than anyone. Someone with his “great and unmatched wisdom” didn’t need to consult with anyone at the Departments of State or Defense, or leadership of germane congressional committees, or our international allies. He could do what he damn well pleased. And it pleased him to make Erdogan and Putin happy.
But the bull in the china shop routine proved disastrous, and now Trump’s enablers in Congress are clutching their pearls and acting aghast at the unfolding tragedy in Syria. These folks need a big dose of reality; something like this was always on the verge of happening in Trump world; it was only a matter of time.
Now Mike Pence, with his practiced look of wounded pride, tells us that the Trump Administration did not “green light” Turkey’s attack on the Kurds. The hell it didn’t.
The Republicans in the House and Senate crossed their fingers and hoped against hope that they could get through Trump’s first term without a foreign policy catastrophe. They can uncross their fingers; their hope was to no avail.
The only silver lining to this foreign policy mess was that Trump’s foolhardy trust-my-gut and go-it-alone action didn’t involve the nuclear option – at least not this time, at least not yet.