By SUSAN K. SMITH
Crazy Faith Ministries
The president of this country has made a mockery of the concept of truth. He lies without, it seems, even thinking about it. He does not care who he maligns or destroys and he seems immune to the attacks thrown his way by the media. For him, truth seems to be just one more thing to be parsed, manipulated, and discarded in his quest for more power.
After having lied from the first day of his presidency – remember his claim about crowd size? – he expects people to believe him now when he says the intelligence community said that there was an “imminent threat” being posed by Quds Force commander Qasem Soleimani, and that’s why the United States had to murder him.
It doesn’t pass the smell test. According to all reports, this man has acted despicably for years; the consensus is that he was “not a good man.” But we had heard nothing from this administration or from previous ones about the threat he posed to America’s existence. It seems that many countries despised him but none of them thought that killing him was a viable option.
Except for this president.
This president has derided the United States intelligence community from the start of his administration. In public, and in the presence of our enemies, he has in essence said that they are not worth their salt, but now, all of a sudden, he says America had to kill Soleimani so that the American people would be protected.
It’s just not a believable claim.
It feels like the United States feels it has the upper hand when it comes to fighting – and beating – Iran, if it should come to that. The attitude being spewed by the president and members of his cabinet has a familiar arrogance that Americans have often communicated when bragging about this country’s military might.
They didn’t in the past and they don’t now seem to appreciate that people of color have non-conventional ways of fighting that are effective against countries much more powerful than are they. While America is a force to deal with, people of color – including, as we will probably see – the Iranians – do not see themselves as grasshoppers. They embrace who they are and what they do and they know that their power is effective against their enemies.
As the back and forth between Iran and the United States escalates, I am reminded of how bad war is. In World War I, 16 million people died – including 7 million civilians and 10 million military personnel. Reports say that in World War II, 75 million people died, including 20 million military personnel and 40 million civilians. The Civil War claimed 620,000 people – all American.
The atomic bomb dropped on Hiroshima killed an estimated 80,000 people in 5 seconds, and the bomb dropped on Nagasaki killed 40,000 people, again, in minutes.
As the president and his friends move this country and indeed the world toward war, I keep wondering who will be left? Even as Australia is being decimated by wild fires, the rest of the world, or at least a good part of it, stands to be decimated by wild politics, lying, and hubris.
What is most troubling about all of this is the lying from this administration that makes it hard to believe that where we are, and what was done, was because there was an “imminent threat.” The imminent threat is the confusion, which the administration’s ongoing, pathological lying has caused, not only in this country but throughout the world. Some Americans are incensed by the show of support the Iranians are showing for the man who was murdered by America – not because they all loved him, because they didn’t, but because they are offended that our country would have the audacity to kill a man whose “imminent threat” was not known to anyone.
They feel the same way as would Americans – both those who love the president and those who despise him – if a foreign government decided a high-ranking cabinet member, someone like Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, for example, posed an “imminent threat” an based on that information – be it true or not – assassinated him.
If the American people really knew what Soleimani had been doing and what he was planning to do, they would be 100 percent behind what the government did, but because this president has lied so much, too many people do not know what to believe and are therefore conflicted.
The world is now holding its breath to see what is next, a sorry state of affairs, which is our reality mostly because the world cannot believe anything this president says.
Rev. Dr. Susan K. Smith is the founder and director of Crazy Faith Ministries. Her latest book, Rest for the Justice-Seeking Soul, is now available through Barnes and Noble and Amazon. She is available for speaking. Contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org.