Is Flap Over Spicer a Cover for Media to Tie Up White House in Global Affairs and Scuttle Trump’s Domestic Agenda?

Stop the Presses News & Commentary


In the words of ABC News’ anchor David Muir, President Trump’s press secretary, Sean Spicer, set off a searing “firestorm” with rather awkward comments during a press conference comparing Syria’s leader Bashar al Assad to Adolph Hitler.

On Tuesday, April 11, Spicer said that even Hitler didn’t stoop to using chemical weapons like Assad allegedly did on April 4. Only two days later, with the facts on the ground still not clear, the U.S. launched a reported 59 cruise missiles at Syria to “punish” Assad’s alleged chemical attack.

Spicer clarified, however, that he meant that the sarin gas attributed to Assad didn’t exist in Hitler’s day, and that Assad used sarin gas in a weaponized-projectile form against his own people, or so it seems.

Spicer then apologized, admitting that his Assad-Hitler comparison was an awkward mistake. Yet ABC News wouldn’t let it go, saying over and over again that Spicer’s “highly insensitive” comments on Syria trivialized Nazi Germany’s gas chambers in WWII.

So, the “firestorm” of controversy, while some Jewish figures complained about Spicer’s remarks, came from ABC’s own hype, blowing Spicer’s brief comment totally out of proportion. Complaints are not necessarily a “firestorm,” which is a very loaded word.

And like usual, big media like ABC, which heatedly equated Spicer’s clunky comments with an alleged outright “denial” of the Jewish Holocaust in the second World War, can’t seem to find the real story.


Mainly, there’s still no solid proof that Syria’s leader used chemical weapons against his own people. Therefore, it was completely unnecessary for Spicer to compare Assad with Hitler in the first place, because the jury is still out on Assad.

When Congressman Thomas Massie of Kentucky (R) tried to explain to CNN that Syrian forces may have mistakenly hit a terrorist-controlled ammo dump that could have contained some kind of gas shells, CNN acted like Massie was a loon.

But Massie simply suggested that more facts needed to be gathered and the cruise missile launch against Syria perhaps was a rush to judgement. That’s what’s being covered up by the media’s unprofessional fixation on Spicer.

To be sure, President Trump, at the behest of his more hawkish advisers and critics, took a gamble when he authorized the missile strike. Syria, with Russia’s help (Russia was invited, the U.S. was not) has been defeating ISIS, a goal shared by Trump. And Trump has said he wants to improve Russian relations, something which now could be impaired.

Some believe Trump launched the short-lived missile strike mainly to diffuse and placate critics who say he’s too cozy with Russia, what with all the current Congressional probing about this alleged coziness before, during and after the election.

Others still believe Assad is guilty and say the attack was justified. The super hawks, such as Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.), want to topple Assad but Trump isn’t so sure that’s a good idea.

Trump on April 12 was quoted by Politico as saying that he does not intend to send ground troops into Syria, in an effort to uphold his “America First” credo that philosophically puts limits on American military interventionism. That stance served Trump well during the election and was repeated at his Jan. 20 inauguration and in subsequent speeches and press conferences.

Meanwhile, U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, having made abrasive reports toward Russia, nevertheless is meeting with Russian leader Vladimir Putin. Call Putin what you will, but he’s no fool. Tillerson, who until recently had never been in public office, is in way over his head in Russia.

One thing is clear: The big media, while refusing to seek out the facts in Syria, has a way of forcing everyone, including Spicer, to parrot the line that Assad is guilty no matter what.

And the media seem determined to mire the Trump White House in inflated controversies, perhaps hoping Trump will resort to extended war in Syria and/or North Korea and fail to follow through on his key domestic agenda items—border security, widespread infrastructure improvements and a better industrial base with better jobs—thereby becoming a one-term president, precisely because Trump’s enemies know that the domestic front is the president’s primary stronghold. If he loses his grip there, his presidency, whether you like Trump or not, could very well erode beyond repair. 

Which is another way of saying that, given the media’s rough treatment of Trump so far, toppling him may be the key fundamental motive, and that may be more important than toppling Assad in the eyes of the neo-conservative faction that steers GOP foreign policy and has little appetite for an America First “populist” direction for the U.S., preferring unhinged internationalism with free-wheeling military and economic policies that benefit the plutocratic few.

That would fulfill the wishes of a malicious, war-mongering, monopoly-news apparatus that is part of the internationalist agenda. The big media have never forgiven Trump for “outing” its deep-seated corruption and its agenda during the 2016 election. Indeed, the orthodox media long ago gave up its supposed mission of objectively reporting the news.


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