TOM DAVIES: The Verdict — A Real-Life Version of ‘Wag The Dog’

I had the goofiest dream last night. The president of the United States, in a panic, placed a call to the president of Russia seeking guidance. It went something like this:

POTUS: Sarah Sanders, get the Russian president on the line. Don’t call your daddy for permission to make the call. Just call!

Sanders: I’m calling on behalf of the president of the United States to talk to President Putin.

Russian operator: Which president?

Sanders: We only have one president.

Russian operator: What’s his name?

Sanders: President Donald J. Trump.

Russian operator: Oh, that one. Our president will accept your call, and he’s on the line.

(Sanders hands the phone to the U.S. president.)

POTUS: Good morning, Vlad, this is the Donald!

PO-Russia: You will address me as President Putin! OK, Little Donny what do you want now?

POTUS: Well, Vlad, err … President Putin … at the direction of Mr. Mueller, the telephone recordings and records of just about any type have been seized from my lawyer’s office.

PO-Russia: Well, what the heck do you want me to do about it, Little Donny?

POTUS: Did you happen to give my lawyer any of those pictures you’re blackmailing me with?

PO-Russia:  You mean the ones in the bedroom with the hookers?

POTUS: I mean any pictures of anyone anywhere that involve me but not Melania!

PO-Russia: No, no, I didn’t give anything to your lawyer … not that I’ll admit to, anyway. By the way, Donald, our informants tell us it was not Mueller who seized those records. It was a United States attorney in New York.

POTUS: How’d you know that?

PO-Russia: Because I read the newspaper headlines and watch CNN after I read your daily briefings. You ought to try it, too.

POTUS: Forget the advice crap, Vlad … err, President Putin. Seizing all of my attorney’s records is going to give my enemies way too much to talk about. I know you’ve allowed the Syrian people to be gassed a number of times recently. In this country, we don’t care if you burn, mutilate, disembowel and otherwise murder men, women and children, but gassing is just a bridge too far. If I give you a heads-up to move your troops and anything of significance out of the way, how about I blow up a couple of empty buildings over there? That way, people will think I give a damn. It’ll take the focus off my problems.

PO-Russia: OK, Donald, you can conduct a single raid … but do be sure to state you’re going to bomb the hell out of us before you don’t. We’ll let it pass this time, and you can claim you won. Gee, this sounds just like that capitalist movie “Wag the Dog”!

POTUS: Vlad … err, President Putin, what are you talking about? Never heard of it! I don’t go to movies, I don’t read, and I don’t listen to anyone but myself. I am my own best source of information. That’s how I can run this country a lot like a dictator. Just look — Congress lets me do anything I want. Maybe a couple guys whine a little. The rest do nothing.

* * *

Yes, it was a dream — or a nightmare — but it’s all too real in the light of day. The president ordered a single strike on Syrian targets, gave the Russians time to warn the Syrians to clear out anything of value and then bragged, “Mission accomplished.”

It speaks volumes that there was no military push back by the Russians after American, French and British missiles struck targets near Damascus. The Russians may not feel superior to us, but they are sure as hell are not afraid.

Why have so many people, including Trump’s official TV network, Fox, overlooked the multiple additional gas attacks on the Syrian people over the past year? Perhaps it’s because back then the U.S. attorney hadn’t just seized records from Trump’s attorney.

Some say it’s coincidence. The president says, “Mission accomplished.” I say, “Oh, crap!” Amen.

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