On her late Wednesday evening broadcast, Rachel Maddow described a huge upheaval happening right now in Gambia, where an ousted president is refusing to step down and military forces on either side of the issue prepare for war.
This potential outbreak of war and injustice for the Gambian people will be one of the first international crises that the Trump administration will face. The deadline for the outgoing president, who insists that God granted him the authority to rule for “a billion years,” was to step down at 7:00 PM Eastern time on Wednesday, but so far has not. How will the Trump administration address this crisis?
No one knows, because Trump is taking power in the United States without completing the work of appointing people to key positions. The implications of this become more frightening as the list of unfilled positions grows, while Trump vows to celebrate his inauguration and then take the weekend off…with those positions yet to be filled.
The MSNBC host posed the following question on her show:
‘Here’s a question for us: who’s on top of this sort of thing in our own government?’
The answer, startlingly enough, is no one. Trump has appointed no one to the many key positions necessary to respond to these types of crises. There is no one at the helm of the National Security Council. There is no one serving as the president of senior African affairs, or for Western affairs, or for European affairs, or South Asia, or Iran. There is no one heading the senior council on strategic planning, or human rights, or serving as director for weapons of mass destruction terrorism and threat reduction. No one has been appointed, no one has been vetted, no one has been confirmed.
As the outgoing administration packs up and leaves on Friday, no one is incoming to take those positions.
As Trump prepares for three celebratory days of his inauguration and considers “day one” to be Monday after he relaxes and enjoys his win, who will respond if war breaks out in Gambia? For that matter, who will respond should any crisis break out over the weekend in any country or any region that requires the United States to respond? Who will respond in the days, weeks, and possibly months until appointees are confirmed? Will those already appointed to other positions step in to assist?
They cannot. They have no clearance or preparedness to do so.
Get ready, folks. This is alarming.
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