What Donald Trump, Chuck Schumer, and Tony Soprano Have in Common - Comment on Trumps Speech

by: The Real News Network

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[Music] welcome to the real news network I'm Paul Jay on Tuesday night Donald Trump delivered an address to the nation pre-empting time on the major television networks and all of the cable news channels there was a lot of speculation during the day that he was going to announce a national emergency and used that as a cover for funding his wall without congressional support well he didn't call for a national emergency in fact he more or less said the same things he's been saying well since his election campaign the message barely changed tonight which I think may have been somewhat disappointing for some of his followers that were expecting something rather dramatic but I think he did say one thing that is revealing into the soul of Donald Trump but into the soul of the whole class Donald Trump represents here's a clip from the speech some have suggested a barrier is immoral then why do wealthy politicians build walls fences and gates around their homes they don't build walls because they hate the people on the outside but because they love the people on the inside that's a speech I think one could have heard from another New Yorker a few years ago I'm loyal to my family I believe and love my family everyone else is expendable and of course that New Yorker I'm talking about is Tony Soprano is of the logic of the Mafia that you're loyal to your own and you don't care much you may not hate the others outside the wall after all it's only business it's not personal to quote Tony Soprano but this is the logic of mobsters well another politician spoke after Donald Trump Chuck Schumer here's a clip from Schumer speech the symbol of America should be the Statue of Liberty not a 30-foot wall well let's remember Chuck Schumer together with President Obama deported something like 2 million people in fact President Obama's nickname was DePorter in chief but let's talk about the roots of why there is so much migration particularly these days from Central America these days meaning the last few decades because it's been a bipartisan affair this mobster mentality that were loyal to ourselves and don't care about others interesting enough in a nation that pretends to be one with American values which are often called Christian values which would one think has something to do with the values of Jesus which certainly is not care about yourself and don't give a damn about anybody else but it's been a rather bipartisan effort both Democrats and Republicans to pillage and plunder Central America and prop up oligarchies tiny handfuls of families in Central American countries that use the most vicious dictatorial methods to suppress resistance supported as I say by both Republican and Democratic regimes or governments now joining us to talk about the wall and Central America and US policy is dr. Gerald Horne he's joining us today from Washington DC Gerald holds the John J and Rebecca more chairs of history and african-american studies at the University of Houston he's the author of many books most recently storming the heavens and the apocalypse of settler colonialism thanks for joining us again Gerald thank you for inviting me so in the Democratic response to Trump after his speech and there was not a word about the origins of this migration crisis the refugee crisis and and I guess because they have as much blood on their hands as the Republican Party does and the kinds of forces Trump represents but tell us a little bit about the the history of US policy in Central America and how this created the conditions for so many women children and men fleeing such violence well I think it's fair to say that there has been a bipartisan crusade over the past half-century to make sure there has not a redistribution of the wealth in Central America which obviously has created a large class of poor people who see no alternative but to head north I'm thinking of 1954 when US imperialism was involved in the overthrow of the arbenz government in Guatemala you may recall that the Argentine dr. Che Guevara was on his motorcycle journey north and he passed through Guatemala at that particular moment and that helped to radicalize him I think of what happened in El Salvador during the Reagan administration of the 1980s when the United States sought to suppress the FMLN the mundo Marty a National Liberation Front a leftist group that was seeking to redistribute the wealth that helped to create a culture of violence in El Salvador many people found it necessary to flee to Los Angeles for example where many of the youth became involved in the gang culture of Los Angeles and then brought that gang culture back to El Salvador and then in a very interesting twist in history then migrated north work back to Los Angeles of where now they're now being accused of being gangsters and thugs as evidenced by mr. Trump's speech tonight when you think of the so-called northern triangle that patch of territory where Guatemala Honduras and El Salvador meet you have to think of the depredations of US imperialism and speaking of Honduras of course we all know that doing the war against the Sandinistas regime in Nicaragua Honduras was a frontline state it was basically turned into a massive military base that was used to destabilize the Sandinista regime that helped to create conditions that once again caused people to flee northward to the US border so I think it's fair to say that there has been a bipartisan crusade to crush radicalism in Central America and that helps to account for this migration crisis today in 2019 and the reason for the support of these violent regime in Central America was very banal in a sense it was straightforwardly to support the efforts of American Fruit Company and other fruit companies American mining companies I mean the whole term Banana Republic if I have it correctly actually comes from Honduras it began as a way to impose American corporate interests on Central America well there's another aspect of bipartisanship that should not escape our attention I'm thinking of an op-ed piece that appeared in the New York Times just a few days ago written by Hector Tobar who's of El Salvadorian descent he's a well-known journalist formerly a journalist for the Los Angeles Times and he pointed out that Hollywood which you oftentimes think of as being a bastion of progressivism that is to say if you don't know better has really helped to establish this stereotype of the Latino drug dealer which goes along with the rough Russian mafioso and the so-called Arab terrorists as stock characters that Hollywood trots out the problem there obviously is that mr. Trump can play upon this idea of the so-called Latino drug dealer in his speech tonight for example he spent quite a bit of time talking about how people from south of the border were responsible for the drug crisis that is killing people in the United States of America and that kind of rhetoric and propaganda that mr. Trump was deploying tonight was propelled in no small measure by the kinds of stereotypes that the film and television industry in Hollywood helped to promulgate with that quote I paid played from Trump in the very beginning how it's not a moral for politicians to build walls around their communities because that's because they love their own not because they hate the other well who is the other that they're building walls around in New York and and in DC and in Baltimore County you know we live in our offices in Baltimore City the war on drugs which is very linked to the history of Central America and Nicaragua because to a large extent these a was financing the arming of the Nicaraguan fascists by selling allowing them to sell drugs into the United States and especially into places like Baltimore majority black african-american communities and then the war on drugs becomes another way to devastate these these communities talk a bit about this history the link between keeping blacks out of rich neighborhoods in the United States and the suppression of resistance in Central America well point number one your listeners and viewers might be familiar with the character known as freeway Ricky Ross he was this black American drug dealer who confessed that he was getting drugs from Central America and if you go to c-span you can see a very interesting hearing when then CIA director joined John Deutsch came to Los Angeles and was pummeled with questions by a black audience who accused him and his agency the CIA of working with contra forces in Nicaragua to help to send drugs that helped to devastate Los Angeles now with regard to this concept of the wall when I was watching mr. Trump's speech I was also thinking of the fact that there was a famous Supreme Court case some years ago involving a black American with dreadlocks known as the Walkman who used to be detained whenever he tried to walk into a neighborhood in Southern California that was non black and there was a virtual wall that basically said that he could not go into certain neighborhoods even if he was not involved in any sort of improper behavior but more than that I was thinking of the bad old days of slavery when a wall was built to keep enslaved Africans inside the United States to prevent them from fleeing northward to Canada or southward to freedom in Mexico and I was also thinking of the fact quite frankly when mr. Trump was demonizing Latinos and demonizing Mexicans in particular accusing them of all manner of crimes including be and murders and rapes and all of the rest I was thinking of a book I just read about the anti Lynch Crusader Ida B Wells Barnett who spoke and wrote in some detail about the bad old days of lynching particularly in the 1890s when those kinds of descriptors demonizing black people that was used to lynch black men in particular that is to say execute them without due process of law I dare say that the kind of rhetoric that mr. Trump is now pushing forward is very dangerous and it's particularly dangerous because I don't think we should rule out the possibility that he has in his back pocket the idea of somehow promulgating a state of emergency that would not only allow him to build his vaunted wall but could also be used to crack down on civil liberties generally you might recall the Korematsu case from the 1940s when people of Japanese ancestry were detained illegally not because of any action that they did but simply because they were of Japanese ancestry there was a Supreme Court justice who said at the time that the emergency powers that rest in the Oval Office that rests on the presidency is like a loaded weapon and that loaded weapon is now in the hands of a demented individual by the name of Donald J Trump the solution to the refugee crisis the migration crisis from Central America it seems to me is rather obvious it's even been talked about during the Obama administration it's has been talked about in Congress but they don't do anything about it which is actual they don't use the word reparations but reparations to Central America for the destructive and criminal violation of international law the way the United States interfered in the internal affairs of Central American countries propped up these dictatorships in the favor of US corporations if if they're serious about wanting to stop this refugee migration crisis and they should be reparations paid to these countries they should stop propping up these right-wing governments in fact what they've done is the opposite of course wherever there's been a progressive breakthrough in Latin America the United States does everything it can to undermine and bring down governments that are actually somewhat more that are Social Democrat by European terms or even American terms and a lot of the governments that the Americans and the CIA have brought down wouldn't have been that far from the policies of a Bernie Sanders but that's considered beyond the pale for American policy in Latin America and the Democrats won't talk about this the Republicans won't talk about this but if there's a serious conversation to be had about this crisis at the border then I think it has to focus on real reparations for Central America I don't care whether you call it reparations or call it investment but it can't just be investment in terms of propping up the Central American oligarchy and the current state of relations in those countries III know you agree with me so that's a softball but go ahead well your words actually reflect the recent remarks of the newly installed president of Mexico i'm speaking of lopez obrador amlo who suggested quite recently that if there were those in Washington who were sincerely interested in halting or stopping or curbing the migration flow northward that they would be involved in more serious and productive investment in Central America particularly in the northern triangle that I just made reference to where the borders of Honduras El Salvador and Guatemala meet and what's interesting to go a step further is that amla said that if he could not receive a fair hearing for this reasonable proposal in Washington that he would go abroad to see investment opportunities for the northern triangle speaking of China for example of speaking of other countries and I think that that's the kind of approach that we need that is to say we need to talk business as we talk in Washington nowadays about a so-called green New Deal we need an old-fashioned New Deal for Central America that is to say government directed in vestment to create employment opportunities at a reasonable wages that's what's needed right now for Central America all right thanks very much for joining us Joe thank you for inviting me and thank you for joining us

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