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Trump vs. Khan June 5, 2017

Posted by WorldbyStorm in Uncategorized.
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What is with Donald Trump? Even by his own standards this is utterly bizarre – another false attack on London Mayor Sadiq Khan for something Khan never said.

Trump tweeted today…

“Pathetic excuse by London mayor Sadiq Khan, who had to think fast on his ‘no reason to be alarmed’ statement. [Mainsteam media] is working hard to sell it!”

What is truly strange is that he tries to double down on his earlier tweets attacking Khan. What Khan said was, in the course of a longer piece:

My message to Londoners and visitors to our great city is to be calm and vigilant today. You will see an increased police presence today, including armed officers and uniformed officers. There is no reason to be alarmed by this.

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Comments»

1. Lamentreat - June 5, 2017

Speaking of bizarre stances, apparently May has repeatedly refused to condemn Trump’s comments, although she did praise Khan’s handling of the situation. You have to wonder about this kind of political stupidity on her part: there are zero votes to be lost anywhere in Europe by taking a stance against Trump.

May is dead in the water now, pretty much no matter what the result – the Tories will push her off the boat within six months or so. Resigns for health reasons, or something.

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WorldbyStorm - June 5, 2017

+1 I just saw that on the Guardian feed. She’s absolutely a disaster – even by Tory lights. That’s so telling that she cannot find it in herself to put even a bit of blue water between herself and Trump.

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2. ivorthorne - June 5, 2017

This is typical Trump. It’s what we expect from him.

People think that May is “sucking up” to Trump. I don’t think she is. I think that she wants to make sure that she does not supressed the vote for former UKIP voters who think Donald Trump is a rather good leader. If she criticises Trump, Farage will criticise her. It’s not going to switch most of those UKIPers to Labour but it’s becoming more and more obvious that the Conservatives need the UKIP vote to turn out and vote Tory on election day.

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WorldbyStorm - June 5, 2017

That’s even more craven in a way. I thought her comments about ‘enough is enough’ were fairly vile but this kind of tops it.

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3. Gerryboy - June 5, 2017

Trump is a laughing stock in Europe. Theresa May is now being seen as a wooden figure in British politics. I don’t expect either to last long as leaders.

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WorldbyStorm - June 5, 2017

Not for the first time I hope you’re right.

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4. The Broken Elbow - June 5, 2017

In fly-over country, where they voted for him, they will believe it. Like they believe there is no climate change. It’s called fake news, of the sort which he peddled to get into the WH, knowing these people will nod in agreement. After all what is the mayor of London’s name?

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WorldbyStorm - June 5, 2017

Yep, I can’t help but think that if Khan had a different surname none of these tweets would be happening.

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5. EWI - June 5, 2017

Came here for the Ricardo Montalban/Agent Orange fight, left disappointed.

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6. Dermot O Connor - June 6, 2017

A bit OT, but I’ll just put this link here. YG seat projections:

https://yougov.co.uk/uk-general-election-2017/

with figure of Con 42 / Lab 38 / Libdem 9

results in

CON 305
LAB 268
LIB 13
SNP 42

LAB/LIB/SNP = 323, enough to form a minority govt, one would imagine, unless they fancy a second election in July.

NOT THAT anyone should trust any polls, nevertheless, what a way we’ve come from “Corbyn will be lucky to win 90 seats,”, etc.

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Lamentreat - June 6, 2017

D O’C: I am skeptical about hopes of anything but a clear Conservative victory. I have heard lots about polls and rallies and killer memes but little on how Labour activists are experiencing their reception door-to-door. It would be good to know more about that.

But I came across this today, from just one month ago, and it is comical how it seems to come from another epoch, in terms of mainstream media at least:
https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2017/may/05/jeremy-corbyn-blame-meltdown-labour-leader
No wonder he’s gone a bit sheepish now.

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7. Joe - June 6, 2017

May is an absolute disaster. Saw her on telly last night making her speech after the London atrocity. She read it, face down looking at the page, and barely looked at her audience and still stumbled over some sentences.
Comes across now as a rabbit in the headlights. Demoralized and unable to rise to any occasion.

Win or lose this election, I’d say she’ll be gone as Tory leader before too long.

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8. Ed - June 6, 2017

I have to say, enraging as his undisguised racism may be (no sign of him picking a fight with Andy Burnham), but God bless Trump for sticking his ignorant oar in. The Tories have been trying to stoke up a racist, authoritarian backlash in the wake of the London attack; May’s speech the next morning was a very crude example of that, the dog-whistle stuff about ‘tolerance of extremism’ and talk of new surveillance powers. Labour countered by talking about police cuts and May’s cover-up of Saudi links to terrorism.

Then in the middle of it all you get Trump’s intervention, making no attempt to hide his glee at the fact that London was attacked, a fitting punishment for its multicultural decadence—and May refuses to say a critical word (like Johnson this morning). It’s what they call a dead cat, but it’s working against the Tories. Frankly I hope he keeps shooting his bigoted mouth off for the next couple of days (it also reminds people of the vicious smear campaign the Tories ran against Sadiq Khan, which was indistinguishable from what Trump has been coming out with).

One thing that’s worth thinking through a bit here I think is Labour’s response. I’ve seen a few left-wing people say they’re not comfortable with Labour taking up the call for more police, including more armed police; ‘have we forgotten what we said about militarized policing, state racism, etc.’ I get where they’re coming from, I understand the unease, but broadly speaking I think Labour have got this right. Corbyn’s speech on Sunday evening said that he would give the police authority to use ‘necessary force’ in responding to terrorist attacks; he was very careful to use that phrase. There’s a lot of macho bullshit circulating about the need for a ‘shoot-to-kill policy’; Corbyn was attacked in 2015 for balking at that term (total amnesia on everyone’s part but his about the experience in Northern Ireland, of course). The police already have the right to use necessary force; clearly in a situation like the one on Saturday night, that would include lethal force, but it depends on the context. When you talk about ‘shoot-to-kill’, that can only mean relaxing the rules of engagement, so inevitably you end up with US-style policing where people are shot on suspicion (especially if they’re black or Asian). Corbyn’s position on this is being presented as a U-turn by the same BBC journalists who lied about what he said 18 months ago (the BBC Trust reprimanded them, but the original misleading story is still up on the BBC website and was being widely circulated on Sunday by Tory supporters).

I think we have to recognize, in the immediate wake of attacks like this, people are going to be looking to the police and intelligence services to protect them; in the short run they’re the only ones who can (it’s right to talk about changing British foreign policy and working to eliminate the conditions that foster groups like ISIS, but that’s necessarily a long-term solution; it won’t get rid of the danger in the short term). Even people who know all about the track record of the Metropolitan Police—all the corruption, racism, suspicious deaths in custody, surveillance of political activists—have no choice but to rely on them. At a time like that, it’s better to have everyone talking about extra resources for policing rather than extra powers, as May would prefer. I don’t buy the simplistic version of the argument about police cuts, ‘if we had more bobbies on the beat we could prevent these attacks’; but there’s a legitimate point about what you could do with more resources used the right way (in particular, sifting through intelligence—once again, it seems the attackers were known to the authorities in advance). You also need to have a wider conversation about the whole way policing is done in Britain; if police forces have a hostile relationship with ethnic-minority communities, that’s going to be disastrous for counter-terrorism (and the whole PREVENT strategy is atrocious and needs to be scrapped).

But so far, the debate after Manchester and London seems to be healthier than the debate in France after the Paris attacks, where Hollande’s government brought in a state of emergency which is still in place (and which is being administered by a police force that includes a lot of Le Pen voters, kicking down doors in Muslim neighborhoods and ransacking people’s homes—a gift to the jihadists). It doesn’t look as if May will be able to do anything similar in Britain; not yet anyway. Obviously that’s partly to do with the scale of the attacks: the main difference between killing 7 people and killing 70 people is access to automatic weapons, there’s a limit to how much damage you can do if you’re only armed with knives. I would like to think we won’t see a repeat of the attacks in the past fortnight but I wouldn’t bet on it; ISIS may be losing their territorial base in Syria but that probably won’t be the end of it. So this is something that the left is going to have to think about; how to respond at moments like this and blunt right-wing attacks that try to capitalize on terrorism without conceding basic principles.

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WorldbyStorm - June 6, 2017

Thanks for that Ed, crystallises a lot of my own thoughts in the topic. And yes, the more he continues to do it the better!

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9. carouselclub2017 - June 6, 2017

Unarmed police may sadly become a memory & armed soldiers at railway stations in Bristol have increased car usage. Events are moving at a rapid rate & one can only hope & pray for peace. The 21th century is starting to take shape & I pity young people facing into an uncertain future. Having been born in 1951 I can well recall the chill of the Cuban Missile Crisis. Also the shooting down of Gary Powers in his U2 spy plane being on the front page of The Cork Evening Echo. The fears then were very real of a hot nuclear war & a real sense of gloom. I pity the workers who travel to work in dread or indeed work under the shadow of fear.

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