US Hypocrisy Over 'Draft Dodger' Trump

© REUTERS / Mike StoneRepublican presidential candidate Donald Trump
Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump - Sputnik International
The US political elite and media are moving closer to dump Trump and thus write the November presidential election result. If such political orchestration were happening in Russia, the American media would be decrying “Kremlin tyranny”.

But, hey, this is the Land of the Free. Free, that is, for the rich and powerful to make up the rules as they go along – even when such rule-making and —breaking has become transparently brazen.

Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton (L) and Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump are seen in a combination of file photos - Sputnik International
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Over the past week, Donald Trump, the Republican billionaire property magnate-turned politician, has been accused of just about every flaw, from sexual assault to financial corruption, to being a foreign stooge for Russian leader Vladimir Putin.

That’s rich given his Democrat rival, Hillary Clinton and her husband, Bill, are up to their eyes from substantive claims of even worse skullduggery, from laundering Saudi oil money into US foreign policy to waging covert wars for regime change, to serial sex parties on a fleshpot private island owned by one of Bill’s rich buddies.

Added to this litany of vice is evidence of Hillary Clinton breaching state secrecy rules while she was Secretary of State (2009-2013) through private use of government emails. Not only is Clinton spared criminal investigation, the media generally avoid any focus on her and her husband’s numerous proven depredations.

The double standard and double think are all part of the systemic bias in the US political process, whereby millions of ordinary citizen voters are being disenfranchised by the rich and powerful elite in order to determine who will be their puppet in the White House.

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Of the recent deluge of deprecations hurled at Trump, it is perhaps the charge of being a military draft dodger that illustrates just how hypocritical and self-serving the US establishment and its servile corporate media are.

The US media are saying that Trump’s five military service deferments during the Vietnam War in the late 1960s make him ineligible to be the nation’s Commander-in-Chief.

So, when was that same standard ever applied for past presidents Bill Clinton and George W. Bush, both of whom were elected twice to the White House despite evidence that they shirked the military draft for their country?

The case against Bush as a draft dodger is especially strong, as documented by American author Russ Baker in his book, Family of Secrets. During the early 1970s, young George was posted to the Texas National Guard’s flying squadron with the help from his daddy, George senior, pulling strings among the Republican Party leadership. At the time “Poppy” Bush was a senior Republican chairman, with close connections to the Central Intelligence Agency, the Pentagon and Big Oil.

Bush junior was then able to avoid military service in Vietnam because he was “on duty” at an airbase in Texas. But, as Baker and other researchers have found out, Bush’s “duty” was clouded with drinking binges, drug abuse and a very patchy record of actual military attendance. Indeed, there is evidence that George W. Bush never even completed his basic minimum service for the National Guard and was eventually banned from flying because of “psychological issues”.

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But this apparent avoidance of patriotic obligation did not stop Bush three decades later becoming the 43rd president of the US in 2001 and again in 2005.

While 50,000 young American men – mainly from poor social backgrounds – were to die in Vietnam, with many more crippled physically and mentally, Bush and other privileged, well-connected peers were able to fiddle the system and spend their war years drinking highballs and snorting cocaine.

Bush’s conduct record has never been pried open by the mainstream US media, even though plenty of skeletons lurk in his locker. One would think that suspicions of cowardice and fraud over Bush’s dodgy military history would be especially worthy of investigation given his responsibility for instigating wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, which have claimed over a million lives, including thousands of his own countrymen.

That legacy of death, destruction and conflict continues to blight entire regions – and was all started on the watch of a man who preferred to party in mess halls than to serve his nation in a time of need.

Donald Trump’s own history certainly sounds disreputable. At age 22, he availed of four military service deferments for “educational reasons” and one for having an alleged bone problem in one his feet. Years later, Trump said he couldn’t remember which foot was the cause of the “medical” problem.

No doubt Trump’s millionaire father had some bearing on why young Donald was able to avoid being shipped out to the jungles of Vietnam, unlike so many others of his generation.

Trump has also not done his tawdry past many favors either. He has made the inane and flippant comparison that his “personal Vietnam” was avoiding contracting sexual diseases during his wild youth.

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More recently the Republican candidate’s ugly public spat with the Muslim parents of a slain US veteran killed during the Iraq War has also compounded accusations that Trump is not respectful of military servicemen and women. That echoes with Trump’s earlier disparagement of Senator John McCain as not being a qualified war hero because he was formerly a POW in Vietnam. “I prefer heroes who don’t get caught by the enemy,” quipped the bumptious Trump.

Trump’s glib views on the NATO military alliance and towards European and Asian allies are also pulled up by his detractors as further evidence of profanity towards “our national treasure”, as Hillary Clinton obsequiously describes the armed forces.

The maverick Republican nominee has a knack for sounding “anti-establishment”. Trump has efficiently tapped the discontent of millions of ordinary, working class Americans.

His background suggests, however, that he is very much part of the ruling establishment – a rich kid who inherited wealth to finance a property empire. In many ways, Trump is no different from George W. Bush, right down the personal history of dodging military service.

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But Trump’s ambition has caused him to cross red lines in the eyes of the establishment. Calling political rivals like Clinton “crooked” and rubbishing the supposed democratic process as “rigged” are intolerable disclosures. For the ruling “one percent”, Trump’s iconoclasm of American myths is too destabilizing. He is a risk to the entire power structure and pretense of US democracy.

Hence, the US plutocracy are closing ranks to dump Trump. Whether Republican or Democrat, Conservative or Liberal, the ruling class are moving to foreclose on Trump’s candidacy.

The torrent of character flaws being leveled against Trump is not the real the issue. The flagrant hypocrisy over his draft-dodging compared with that of George W. Bush and other one percenters is proof of that.

What is at issue is how the US presidential election is being decided by a powerful minority.

Nothing new here, one might add, except the brazenness by which democratic choice in the US is made obsolete.

Arch-conservative Robert Kagan, husband of Victoria “F..k the EU” Nuland, is one of the growing number of top Republicans who are now backing Democrat Clinton for president. Kagan claims that Trump poses a danger for “fascism coming to the US”.

The truth is that Trump is only a symptom of the political disease that is already endemic in the US.

The views expressed in this article are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official position of Sputnik.

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