By Robert A. Vella
In the geopolitical world, human history is awash in bluster, saber-rattling, and all manner of threats from the cleverly implied to the directly explicit. It’s a way of life, so to speak, for the divergent leaders of our various nations to communicate with each other and to their own peoples on a public stage. Most of the time this verbal aggression is simply rhetorical, done purposefully to achieve some desired effect – such as to project the image of strength. Sometimes, though, it is done with deadly serious intent – as was the case with Adolf Hitler.
Hitler was the archetypal megalomaniac, a leader obsessed with power and consumed with delusion. He was no self-serving tyrant nor petty dictator. The man was a danger to both himself and to everyone around him. Given enough military might, the danger he posed would escalate on a global scale – which it so tragically did.
Now, the world has another megalomaniac to contend with; and, this one possesses the most destructive force ever created by humankind – the nuclear arsenal of the United States.
From: Washington Reacts to Trump’s ‘Fire and Fury’ Warning to North Korea [emphasis by The Secular Jurist]
Donald Trump’s fierce new threat against North Korea is unsettling official Washington as much as anything he has done so far as president.
Trump created a firestorm of criticism Tuesday when he warned: “North Korea best not make any more threats to the United States. They will be met with fire and fury like the world has never seen.” These remarks came the same day the Washington Post reported that U.S. intelligence analysts have concluded North Korea is making miniaturized nuclear warheads that can be placed inside missiles. Pyongyang also has been conducting missile tests in recent weeks. After Trump’s remarks, the North Korean regime said it is considering an attack on Guam.
Historian Timothy Naftali of New York University told CNN, “Donald Trump may put himself in a box because he is promising action that he might actually be unwilling to deliver on. So he should be careful what he threatens because he may, for the sake of U.S. credibility, have to act on his threats. That’s why presidents are so careful not to bluff. The other side can call your bluff.”
Megalomaniacs typically don’t need moral justification from external sources, but when they do receive such outside support the likelihood of drastic action must increase.
Texas megachurch pastor Robert Jeffress, one of President Trump’s evangelical advisers who preached the morning of his inauguration, has released a statement saying the president has the moral authority to take out North Korean leader Kim Jong Un.
“When it comes to how we should deal with evil doers, the Bible, in the book of Romans, is very clear: God has endowed rulers full power to use whatever means necessary — including war — to stop evil,” Jeffress said. “In the case of North Korea, God has given Trump authority to take out Kim Jong Un.”
The biblical passage Romans 13 gives the government authority to deal with evildoers, Jeffress said. “That gives the government to the authority to do whatever, whether it’s assassination, capital punishment or evil punishment to quell the actions of evildoers like Kim Jong Un,” he said.
He said that many pacifist Christians will cite Romans 12, which says, “Do not repay evil for evil,” but Jeffress says that that passage is referring to Christians, not to the government.
An incredibly powerful megalomaniac allied with rabid evangelicalism? Good grief!
Meanwhile, the noose of criminal investigations is tightening around President Trump.
FBI agents raided the Alexandria home of President Trump’s former campaign chairman late last month, using a search warrant to seize documents and other materials, according to people familiar with the special counsel investigation into Russian meddling in the 2016 election.
Federal agents appeared at Paul Manafort’s home without advance warning in the predawn hours of July 26, the day after he met voluntarily with the staff for the Senate Intelligence Committee.
The search warrant was wide-ranging and FBI agents working with special counsel Robert S. Mueller III departed the home with various records.