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Trump's SOTU speech: Myth masquerading as reality

John Wight
John Wight has written for a variety of newspapers and websites, including the Independent, Morning Star, Huffington Post, Counterpunch, London Progressive Journal, and Foreign Policy Journal.
Trump's SOTU speech: Myth masquerading as reality
Understanding that what is normal for the spider is chaos for the fly is key to understanding the gulf that separates Washington from reality

Aside from the fact that watching Donald Trump address bodies such as the UN and US Congress is akin to watching Chewbacca trying to play Hamlet, the 45th President’s State of the Union address merely confirmed that he is a man whose own detachment from reality is now complete.

I give you as an example: “The agenda I will lay out this evening is not a Republican agenda or Democrat agenda, it is the agenda of the American people.”

In this one sentence Donald Trump made the American people complicit in the campaign of regime change that is currently underway against the democratically elected government of Venezuela; made them complicit in the violation of Syria’s national sovereignty with the presence of US military forces in the country against the express wishes of the country’s legitimate government; and rendered them complicit in the reckless provocation visited on Russia with its unilateral withdrawal from the INF (Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces) Treaty.

Also on rt.com ‘Neo-con wine in an America First bottle’: Foreign policy analysts rail against Trump’s SOTU address

And this is without mentioning the incredible array of countries the Trump administration is sanctioning, delivering economic hardship to untold millions of people as a consequence.

Further on, Trump announced, “On D-Day, June 6, 1944, 15,000 young American men jumped from the skies, and 60,000 more stormed in from the sea to save our civilization from tyranny.”

Here we have a primer for what’s coming down the track in June. Get ready for a festival of self-congratulation and national aggrandizement surrounding the role of the US as the supposed savior of the world from the evil of fascism. In the process, no mention will be made at all of the centrality of Russia to that seminal struggle for the future of humanity, and of course, no mention will be made of the striking parallels that exist between Spain in the 1930s and Venezuela today.

How does Spain in the 1930s and Venezuela today bear relevance to D-Day, I hear you ask?

Well, it’s very simple really. It was in Spain in the 1930s where fascism, led by Hitler and Mussolini, could have been stopped in its infancy – that is if the US, Britain, and France had joined Moscow in resisting the attempt to destroy Spanish democracy and deny Hitler, in particular, the opportunity to test and see fail the resolve of the West in opposing him.

READ MORE: Did Trump’s speech divide or unite Americans? WATCH RT panel debate State of Union address

The crucial difference between Spain then and Venezuela now is that whereas back then it was fascism which posed the single greatest threat to humanity today it is rampant US hegemony. And considering that in Washington, within both Democrat and Republican wings of the country’s political establishment, it is not the concept or principle of US hegemony where the disagreement lies, it is over the best way to sustain and maintain, the world has cause for serious concern.

Returning to Trump’s gushing praise of all things America, there were points during the address when parody was given free rein to run riot. For example: “In the 20th century, America saved freedom, transformed science, redefined the middle class, and when you get down to it, there is nothing anywhere in the world that can compete with America.”

Freedom US-style translates to the freedom to be homeless, hungry, shot by a deranged lone gunman or police officer (some might say both are interchangeable); the freedom to go without healthcare, and the freedom to be denied justice on the basis of your race and skin color.

Thus nothing in the world can, Trump is right, compete with America.

Moving on, Trump revealed, “As we speak, large organized caravans are on the march to the United States…I have ordered another 3,750 troops to our southern border to prepare for this tremendous onslaught.”

The sickness that ails America is embodied in this statement. The migrant caravans heading north to the US border are a symptom not of America’s promise of freedom and prosperity, but of the role of the US – economically, geopolitically and militarily – in denying and crushing those very things all over Central and Latin America over generations.

The malign history of US-supported and funded coups, of the covert and overt destabilization of states whose governments dare refuse to continue to be dominated by Washington, are a major cause of the ills that afflict this particular region.

For those countries, the ability to break out of the shackles of underdevelopment has been made well nigh impossible due to the overweening economic and geopolitical weight of US neo-colonialism. Moreover, a global economy operating on the principle of market relations can only ever favor the industrialized north – this in terms of trade, currency, and economic diversification – creating islands of wealth and prosperity amid a veritable ocean of poverty and immiseration.

READ MORE: US support of ‘dictators, butchers & extremists’ ruined Middle East – Iranian FM on Trump’s SOTU

Thus it will only be when the US understands the importance of aiding rather than impeding the economic development of the countries that exist beyond its southern border – and ceases meddling in the internal affairs of those states that wish to harness their natural resources as they see fit and follow their own ideological path - that it will become serious about tackling the issue of immigration.

Towards the end of his address, Trump served up the usual vacuous tripe for dessert: “We must always keep faith in America's destiny — that one nation, under God, must be the hope and the promise and the light and the glory among all the nations of the world!”

Apart from having to get one’s toes surgically uncurled upon listening to this awful peroration, these words of Goethe hover into admonitory relief: “None are more hopelessly enslaved than those who falsely believe they are free.”

The prison of false consciousness, the famed German writer and statesman describes, is the most secure prison of all. The extent to which the American people wake up to this fact is the extent to which they will liberate themselves, and the world, from a hegemon erected as a monument to might is right.

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The statements, views and opinions expressed in this column are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of RT.

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