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Tuesday, May 18, 2021

Trump’s Ex-Chief of Staff Canned for Ambassador

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If it were up to President Trump —

— and minding his own business (or unthinking garbage bag)

—I’d choose Sonny Carson as my official ambassador to the Kingdom of Jordan. But no.

If it were up to him — and minding his own business (or unthinking garbage bag) — I’d choose Sonny Carson as my official ambassador to the Kingdom of Jordan. But no.

Actually, Trump has nominated someone else for the job.

The Rhodes scholar and JAG attorney was Trump’s third pick to be ambassador to King Abdullah’s United States. The first two men were Mitt Romney, then governor of Massachusetts, and Alan Keyes, a one-time American one-term congressman from the Midwest. Romney was the less problematic choice because he knew America, as he showed through his Mormon faith and his steely drive; but Keyes is a bauble, a fringe figure, whose stupid idea that our government should have bought out the looters of 9/11 was a source of dark, ludicrous hilarity.

(It really was as dark and absurd as that. No kidding. Keyes said that even though our government was prostrate from the crimes of bin Laden and his mob of terrorists, it wouldn’t want to know why those terrorists killed us.)

The third choice was Cavness. I never had seen him on the world stage before.

Trump announced Cavness’ nomination in May.

Carson’s message was reassuring. “I am a veteran, an American who is committed to protecting America’s people,” he said. “And I proudly serve under the American flag.”

Not the kind of flag one saw during Keyes’ speech.

Trump didn’t want me to see him, but that didn’t stop me from noticing his physical appearance. He was a bit scrawny, grey and mustachioed. This might be OK, of course, if he was a candidate for the vice presidency, not an ambassador. Imagine his interrogations:

Carson: Your ex-wife, Ivana, said you had an affair in 1981, and that you cheated on her and left her for Marla Maples. You denied it. What do you say to the women who might be offended by your previous conduct?

Trump: I’m not married anymore. You wanna know why? Because I had the Lewinsky scandal and I had to resign from the Presbyterian Church.

He looked at me disapprovingly.

Carson: You don’t know why, do you?

Trump: Because it’s the one thing I don’t want.

There would be no public explanation.

Carson: And aren’t you worried about the women who might be offended by your previous conduct?

Trump: I do know why. And it’s the one thing I don’t want.

And for reasons I cannot fathom, Donald has now nominated Carson, who was assistant to the chief of staff in the White House under George W. Bush.

I know, I know: It would not be great to have Donald Trump carrying the torch into the Kingdom of Jordan for the third time. It has been a zero-sum game, since 1982. And President Jimmy Carter was the first to flit to the Arab Middle East, carrying with him an alleged a case of bad gaffes, a false-diamond hoax.

George Bush won the first election in 2000. Bill Clinton won the second. Bush’s failure as a diplomat is obvious, especially in Iraq. And Carter’s after America left the country. In the words of the investigative news site Foreign Policy, “Georgia was not the only foreign minister to strike out against Carter’s plan for a new government, however. An Arab League conference dissolved in acrimony, amid warnings that Carter’s plan ‘contributed to the rise of religious fanaticism in the Middle East.’”

But I didn’t think about that. I am pretty sure Cavness has a number to call. Because if he doesn’t, he better do it.

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