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Curating the madness


This is literally normal now:

President Trump seems wholly unconcerned with the Kurds he left without backup in Syria.

After pulling U.S. troops from the Kurdish-held area of Syria and promptly allowing Turkey to invade, Trump said in the Oval Office on Wednesday that America’s Kurdish allies are “safe” because “Syria’s protecting” them. That’s not true, but Trump doesn’t seem to care regardless, adding that the Kurds are “no angels, by the way.”

Once the U.S. pulled support from the Kurds who led America’s fight against ISIS, Turkey quickly attacked the region and unquestionably killed Kurds along the way. But Trump brushed off the incursion on Wednesday, saying “If Turkey goes into Syria it is between Turkey and Syria. It’s not our problem.” “They’ve got a lot of sand over there… There’s a lot of sand that they can play with,” he said of the Turkish attacks that have already slaughtered dozens of Kurds. Trump also shrugged off how Russia has already started trolling the U.S. by sending troops to the region and said it’s fine for Russia to start supporting Syria.

Trump seems to have forgotten that, like critics and allies on both sides of the aisle have told him, the Kurds lost about 11,000 of their own troops during America’s fight against ISIS. 

Why doesn’t he just come right out and call them sand [slur] and get it over with? That’s the thought that’s always about a quarter-inch beneath the surface whenever a white guy starts talking about “sand” and the Middle East.

And in an especially classy move, Mr. Reality TV Superstar had a nice little surprise for some grieving parents:

You can almost imagine the reality-show excitement that surely went into the ill-considered plan to introduce Anne Sacoolas, the American diplomatic wife who killed 19-year-old motorcyclist Harry Dunn when she drove down the wrong side of an English lane in August, to Dunn’s grieving parents. Sacoolas left the U.K. in early September under diplomatic-immunity protections and has not been seen in public since.

The Dunn family, now in the United States to drum up support to send Sacoolas back to the U.K. to face justice, had accepted an “urgent” invitation by the White House from National Security Adviser Robert O’Brien, to visit Donald Trump in Washington, D.C., on Tuesday night.

President Trump said Wednesday that he had arranged the meeting at the request of British Prime Minister Boris Johnson. Speaking at a joint press conference with Italian President Sergio Mattarella, he described the encounter as “beautiful in a certain way,” adding that he expressed condolences “on behalf of our country. ”

He then admitted that he tried to get the family to meet Sacoolas, who was waiting in an adjacent room. “I offered to bring the person in question in,” he said. “And they weren’t ready for it.”

Trump, it seems, thought he could convince the Dunns to meet the woman who killed their son, and would do so by opening a side door through which she would walk. The whole scene would be captured by a pool of photographers who had been summoned for the meeting.

But the Dunns would have none of it and refused to meet her. Dunn family spokesman Radd Seiger said that the family felt “ambushed” when the “bombshell” was dropped that Sacoolas was next door.

They had envisioned meeting her one day, but as Seiger told The Daily Beast, “only on British soil” and “only with mediators, counselors, and their legal team in tow.”

In a statement on the Dunn’s Justice4Harry GoFundMe page, Seiger explained what happened. “The family had four surprises yesterday,” he wrote. “Firstly, being invited to the White House in the first place which came right out of the blue.”

In fact, Dunn’s father Tim had suggested on CBS News earlier in the day that he would like to meet the president “man to man, father to father” to plead with him to send Sacoolas back to face justice.

Seiger said the second surprise was that they had not expected to actually meet the president in person. But the third was the doozy.
“Thirdly that Mrs. Sacoolas was present in the building and fourthly that it was the president’s intention for Harry’s family to meet Mrs. Sacoolas in the Oval Office in front of several photographers in what was obviously designed to be a press call,” Seiger wrote in his statement.

40% of the country is totally OK with all of this.

Abigail in comments:

I know the business with the Kurds is objectively the more horrible of these two horrible things, but I can’t get over the sheer narcissistic awfulness of trying to ambush a pair of grieving parents with the woman who killed their child. Here these poor people are, behaving like real human beings, carrying a terrible burden and trying to get some small bit of justice for their son (I mean, even in the rosiest scenario where the driver goes back to the UK and stands trial, do you know what kinds of laughable sentences the killers of cyclists get, if at all?). And, as if they haven’t suffered enough, they have to spend entire minutes of their precious lives interacting with this pustule of a man, who has clearly never experienced a moment’s love or care for another human being, and to whom their tragedy is merely a way of aggrandizing himself. Which he can’t even do well, so on top of everything else they have the embarrassment and frustration of dealing with his mess, and having to justify their entirely reasonable refusal to sit down with their child’s killer on a moment’s notice, just because the most selfish human being on the planet wanted a photo-op.

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