“Nobody believes a liar even when he is telling the truth.” Wise words from the old man trying to comfort the Shepherd boy in Aesop’s fable "The Boy Who Cried Wolf." In Trump’s first real international emergency where Iran shot down a $150 million drone and we were within 10 minutes of responding with some type of strike, what are we to believe?

Did Iran hit those oil tankers or was it the work of some other evil doer?  Is Trump and Bolton trying to get into a war with Iran or has Trump’s bluster painted him into a corner?

The only consistent beliefs Trump holds are that tariffs are a good thing and that war in the Middle East is a bad thing begging the question of why he chose grumpy John Bolton as National Security advisor.

Based on his behavior towards anything Obama, an argument could be made that his strategy relative to Iran was shaped by his childish fetish of getting even with our 44th President. He pulls us out of the Iran Nuclear agreement and imposes tougher sanctions to undo Obama’s accomplishment and show the world how the art of the deal really works.

I don’t know what to believe about the location of the drone when it was shot down.  I don’t know what to believe that Trump pulled back on the strike 10 minutes before execution.  One would expect a fine military like we have would have fully informed the President of potential casualties in the planning of the strike.

Chaos and confusion, could I guess be a strategy but then we could just be witnessing incompetence in action. What is clear is that Trump’s words and actions on Iran have cost us the downing of a $150 million drone. Trump knows that getting us into a war in the Middle East would send him packing in 2020 and you can assume the Iranians are also of that opinion.

It is ironic that Trump’s two consistent beliefs, tariffs and avoidance of war in the Middle East now have him between a rock and a hard place. Push too hard and you have an economy killing trade war. Push too hard and you are in another war in the Middle East. Stop pushing and backing down on retaliatory responses and you look like a paper tiger.

In fable land the shepherd boy learned his lesson and never again cried wolf.  In Trump land you make up another lie that it was the fault of the Democrats or fake news or the witch or Jeff Sessions or the deep state or Hillary or Obama.

David Turman

Hickory, NC

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