Yet another possibly otherwise normal, levelheaded interaction between the United States and an ally has become defined by “childish insults” thanks to President Donald Trump. This Monday, as he made his way to a state visit to the United Kingdom, he lashed out at London Mayor Sadiq Khan on Twitter after the Labour Party member spoke out against his policies in an op-ed for the Observer. Khan’s office has now responded to Trump’s belligerence, dismissing the relevance of his whining but again pointing to the dangers of his antagonistic, isolationist policies he continues to seek to push on the world.
‘This is much more serious than childish insults which should be beneath the President of the United States. Sadiq is representing the progressive values of London and our country warning that Donald Trump is the most egregious example of a growing far-right threat around the globe, which is putting at risk the basic values that have defined our liberal democracies for more than 70 years.’
Trump had taken to Twitter with an assessment of Khan as a “stone cold loser” — whatever that means — who he also mocked as being supposedly half the height of “our very dumb and incompetent Mayor of NYC, de Blasio, who has also done a terrible job.” In other words — Trump is again conducting what’s at least supposed to be foreign policy via insults hurled on social media that would not be out of place in some dispute in a schoolyard somewhere.
No matter his whining, concerned people of the United Kingdom including Khan are still making their opposition to Trump’s platform abundantly clear. Khan has again approved the display of the now infamous Trump baby blimp in protests against the U.S. president. The imagery first emerged in protests connected to Trump’s more low-key visit to the United Kingdom last year, having since been adopted by anti-Trump activists in the United States, where it’s popped up multiple times.
This time in the U.K., Trump will be spending a few days meeting with Queen Elizabeth II, outgoing Prime Minister Theresa May, and participating in a ceremony to mark the 75th anniversary of the Allies’ D-Day invasion in World War II, among other things.
The cold relations between Trump and Khan go back awhile at this point. Trump has, for instance, in the past suggested that “political correctness” — an again elusive concept that conservatives love to use as a boogeyman — was to blame for terrorism in London, a proposition that Khan emphatically refuted.
Besides his incessant antagonism of the London mayor, Trump has also thrown metaphorical dynamite at British politics through other means in recent days. He suggested that the controversial, lately milkshake-associated Nigel Farage should lead negotiations for the United Kingdom to withdraw from the European Union, and he added a suggestion that the U.K. should sue the E.U., although he seemed to have no idea how that grand, angry suggestion would actually play out — which really describes a lot of features of Trump’s platform at this point.
Featured Image via screenshot