Wednesday, November 20, 2019


This is how critics of President Trump see Lieutenant Colonel Alexander Vindman:
No West Wing writer nor Democratic consultant could dream up a better “star witness” for the House’s impeachment inquiry. A top National Security Council adviser on Eastern Europe, Vindman is a Ukrainian-American immigrant whose gratitude for the nation that offered his family refuge from Soviet oppression is so great, he dedicated his entire adult life to its defense (and has the Purple Heart to prove it). He’s that rare breed of neo–cold warrior, whose faith in the U.S. as a guarantor of global freedom and disdain for the Kremlin as the mother of all tyrannies, is rooted in personal experience, not Tom Clancy novels. So Vindman can, with incontrovertible sincerity, end his opening statement by reassuring his immigrant father, “Do not worry, I will be fine for telling the truth.”
By contrast, your right-wing relatives see Vindman as a big girl.
Lt. Col. Polly PrissyPants Speaks His Truth

On yesterday’s marathon episode of ImpeachmentTV, we were introduced to prissy little princess Lt. Col. Vindman on the NSC....

Vindman testified that he was upset and thought Trump’s July call with the new Ukrainian president was “wrong” so he went outside his chain of command to the NSC lawyers like a little snitch. He also made it clear he was butt-hurt that the president, who he has never spoken to directly, did not follow Vindman’s idea of proper protocol with his INTERAGENCY CONSENSUS talking points.

Vindman sassed Rep. Devin Nunes for not using his proper title of “Lt. Col.” We also learned that Princess Vindman was offered the position of Ukrainian Defense Minister three times by the Ukrainians. Three times. Let me suggest that people don’t extend offers like that unless you have an “open for business” sign flashing.
That's from a piece by Liz Spayd Sheld at American Greatness, and if you don't like the insinuation, maybe you should bring it up the next time AG's editor, Chris Buskirk, appears as a commentator on NPR or the New York Times op-ed page.

I watched parts of Vindman's testimony, and it was obvious to me that even though he was wounded by an IED outside Fallujah and is now risking both his career and his family's personal safety, much of America was likely to regard him as far less brave and tough than Congressman Jim Jordan, who isn't a tough guy but puts more effort into acting the part.

Right-wingers, in particular, have long preferred performative toughness to the real thing. They loved it when World War II noncombatant Ronald Reagan saluted his military guards (a practice he invented and that had no basis in American tradition). They loved Vietnam noncombatant George W. Bush's flight suit stunt just after the fall of Baghdad in 2003. They love Trump's flashes of militarism (and overlook his plans for ceding global power to Russia and China).

They despise not only Democrat John Kerry, a Purple Heart winner, but John McCain, who spent years in a brutal POW camp. They're indifferent to the military service of George Bush the Elder and Bob Dole -- Reagan and Trump not only are much bigger Republican heroes but are regarded as far tougher and braver, as was Bush the Younger throughout his first term.

It's obvious to me why House Republicans moved Jim Jordan onto the Intelligence Committee: He's obnoxious, boorish, and full of himself. He has the affect of a cop who wants to mess with your head after pulling you over for a busted taillight. He's every jock-sniffing high school teacher who ever sided with the tough kids because he agreed with them that the kid they were picking on is a pathetic loser.

For much of America, that's real toughness, not what Vindland has displayed all his life.

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