President Donald Trump set off yet another controversy on Twitter when, on September 29, he echoed the rhetoric of far-right evangelical wingnut Robert Jeffress and tweeted, “if the Democrats are successful in removing the president from office, which they will never be, it will cause a Civil War-like fracture in this nation from which our country will never heal.” Although Trump’s irresponsible tweet has drawn widespread condemnation, the armed militia group the Oath Keepers applauded the tweet and posted, “We ARE on the verge of a HOT civil war. Like in 1859.” And intelligence expert Patricia Ravalgi, in an October 6 op-ed for the Daily Beast, contemplates how the U.S. military would respond if a civil war did, in fact, break out in the United States in response to Trump’s impeachment.
Trump is now facing an impeachment inquiry in the U.S. House of Representatives because of the Ukraine scandal and a whistleblower’s revelation that during a July 25 phone conversation, Trump tried to pressure Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky into digging up dirt on former Vice President Joe Biden and his son Hunter Biden. If the House does end up indicting Trump on articles of impeachment, he would face a trial in the U.S. Senate.
Ravalgi spent 19 years working intelligence-related jobs in Washington, D.C. — including jobs at the FBI and the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) — before working for United States Central Command (CENTCOM) in Tampa, Florida. And she is troubled by the fact that after Trump posted his civil war-related tweet, the hashtag #CivilWarSignup and the phrase “Civil War” started trending on Twitter.
“In the modern era,” Ravalgi writes, “real civil wars have been the great affliction of Third World countries — conflicts that split nations and societies along political, ethnic or religious fault lines. They are very often accompanied by martial law and resolved by military intervention. Is this what the president has in mind? Where would the U.S. military stand in such a situation? A view from the inside indicates the armed forces are as divided as the rest of the country — and divided is a dangerous place for the U.S. military to find itself.”
….If the Democrats are successful in removing the President from office (which they will never be), it will cause a Civil War like fracture in this Nation from which our Country will never heal.” Pastor Robert Jeffress, @FoxNews
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) September 30, 2019
Here’s the money quote from that thread. This is the truth. This is where we are. We ARE on the verge of a HOT civil war. Like in 1859. That’s where we are. And the Right has ZERO trust or respect for anything the left is doing. We see THEM as illegitimate too.@StewartRhodesOK https://t.co/DjB8TY0vCo
— Oath Keepers (@Oathkeepers) September 30, 2019
Ravalgi observes that Trumpism has infiltrated the military, including “deep state” conspiracy theories.
“The constant drumbeat of right-wing conspiracy theories and hateful political rhetoric has found its way into a sizable portion of the U.S. military’s rank and file,” Ravalgi warns. “Not too long ago, the majority of those serving in the military would have identified themselves as Reagan Republicans. But just as that brand of Republicanism has been replaced by Trumpism among civilian Republicans, so too has it seeped into the armed forces — and by these standards, even Ronald Reagan would be viewed as a socialist.”
— Adam Kinzinger (@RepKinzinger) September 30, 2019
Ravalgi goes on to say that “support for Donald Trump among a large segment of the U.S. military is downright cult-like” — which she says “doesn’t make sense” to her because “Trump is everything the U.S. military should despise: a draft dodger, adulterer, flabby, lazy, unread, a tabloid joke for decades, and TV reality show star.”
To critics of Trump, the impeachment inquiry led by House Democrats is a prime example of checks and balances at work. But to Trump devotees and the alt-right, it is an attempted coup d’etat by Democrats and the “deep state” — and Ravalgi is worried about people in the military who buy into such conspiracy theories.
“The belief that there is indeed a coup being orchestrated against President Trump is a weapon Trump has in his arsenal, depending how far down the road to authoritarianism he decides to go,” Ravalgi observes. “But Trump would need to deeply fracture the military first, and that is something to watch for. Most members of the armed forces are honorable, patriotic Americans who would never take part in such a scheme, despite their support for Trump. But a significant portion just might.”
What Zelensky knew: The devastating and darkly ironic impact of Trump’s attempt to bribe Ukraine
In their effort to exculpate President Donald Trump in the impeachment inquiry, Republicans put Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky’s denial that he ever felt pressure from the White House to open up investigations into Democrats at the center of their argument. A new GOP memo says that both leaders have acknowledged “there was no pressure” on the famous July 25 call that sparked the inquiry and thus argues that the allegations made by Democrats that Trump abused his power don’t hold.
Greta Thunberg says ‘people must finally wake up’ to the fact Trump is ‘so extreme’ on climate change
Swedish teen activist Greta Thunberg said Tuesday that US President Donald Trump's climate change denialism was "so extreme" that it had helped galvanize the movement to halt long term planetary warming.
She spoke in an interview with AFP on the eve of her departure from North America where she has spent almost three months.
"He's so extreme and he says so extreme things, so I think people wake up by that in a way," the 16-year-old said from on board a sailboat preparing to depart from the East Coast town of Hampton, Virginia for Europe early Wednesday.
"I thought when he got elected, now people will finally, now people must finally wake up," she continued.
Trump praises ‘amazing warrior’ Sean Hannity for saying impeachment hearings are a ‘phony showtrial’
President Donald Trump thanked Fox News personality Sean Hannity for his over-the-top defense the evening before impeachment hearings begin.
According to Trump's quoting, Hannity said Rep. Adam Schiff (D-CA) was a, "corrupt, compromised, coward and congenital liar."
Hannity called the Schiff's Intelligence Committee hearings a "phony showtrial" -- despite the reality that an impeachment trial would occur in the GOP-controlled Senate.
Still, Hannity lashed out at the inquiry as "another fraudulent hoax conspiracy theory" and "witch hunt."
Trump thanked, "Sean the amazing warrior!"