Column - Why should we all die for one man?

IN the early thirties, Germany was in severe economic recession and in decline. In 1933, Adolph Hitler brainwashed and won over the disillusioned German working class to be elected as the chancellor.

Hitler adopted a pro-fascist and right-wing nationalist ideology. He singled out the Jews as the "problem" and a root cause of the unemployment and other social ills. He rallied the people to make Germany great again. He wanted Germany to be the emerging European superpower, with its allies, Japan and Italy, to conquer the rest of the world, to be their colonies of the new world order.

Today, the United States is losing its global influence and is facing a stagnant economy with many working class people feeling neglected and disillusioned by the establishment in Washington.

In 2016, a "hero" emerged in the United States to fight for its working class and speak out against unemployment, poverty and the economic decline. He wanted to make America great again.

He has implied that ordinary peace-loving Muslims are the culprits and cause of terrorism. He saw Muslims as the "problem", like how Hitler saw the Jews.

Like Hitler, Donald Trump was democratically elected to be the president and commander-in-chief of the most powerful nation on earth.

He has been promoting Islamophobia by perpetuating stereotype myths about Muslims based on the same right-wing ideology that Hitler used.

There are two kinds of nationalism.

The first is Progressive (or Defensive) Nationalism, which is about fighting for freedom, self-determination and independence against foreign domination and control. It can be violent when the colonial or foreign power uses terror and repression to silence the population. For countries such as India and Malaysia, it was generally peaceful.

The other type – Right-Wing Nationalism – is negative, oppressive and often pro-fascist and is sweeping parts of the Western world. It is based on arrogance, ignorance, bigotry and racism, especially Islamophobia. These nationalist extremists profess the right to oppress minorities and blame them for causing social problems.

Within days of taking over as president on Jan 20, Trump signed an executive order to ban all ordinary people from Iran, Iraq, Syria, Libya, Yemen, Somalia and Sudan from entering the US. He suspended the Syrian refugee programme. The civilised world is outraged.

Many Muslims were traumatised by this ban. Trump's excuse was to prevent Muslim terrorists from entering the US but he did not show any facts to support the case. Neither did he explain why the ban was selective and did not include Muslim countries such as Saudi Arabia and Pakistan.

Palestinians are still fighting for their homeland and are even prepared to compromise on a UN-sponsored two-state solution (accepting the existence of Israel) for the sake of peace. However, Trump seems to oppose the two-state solution without offering any constructive proposal. Furthermore, his support of illegal Israeli settlements on occupied West Bank and his idea on moving the US Embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem are causing international outrage and undermining the peace process.

His "America First" policy seems to be pitting America against the world, including the United Nations.

The US is withdrawing from the Trans-Pacific Partnership trade deal in favour of bilateral and regional trade pacts, which Trump feels that the US would have stronger bargaining power.

The US has been benefiting immensely from globalisation including the influx of talented and skilled people from other countries to make America prosper. For the world's largest economy to adopt such an inward-looking policy is stupid, arrogant, selfish and irresponsible. It will come back to haunt America.

The huge turnouts in the marches in support of women in Washington and all over the world during Trump's inauguration showed the strong sentiments against Trump's remarks and acts.

Pushing for building his border wall with Mexico is aimed at playing to the gallery on xenophobia in a country based historically on migration of people from Europe and elsewhere.

Trump seems to be pushing the world closer to a nuclear holocaust with his hawkish foreign policy and to "greatly expand nuclear capabilities".

Former Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev has issued a warning that the world is getting closer to a nuclear war than before. Gorbachev was responsible for bringing an end to the Cold War era.

The "Doomsday Clock" maintained by the influential Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists' Science and Security Board has just been moved to two-and-a-half minutes to midnight (Doomsday). It was an important symbolic gesture that the world is now closer to a nuclear catastrophe than ever before.

Trump may also be playing a dangerous game of brinkmanship by trying to cosy up to Russia, perhaps with the aim of trying to "contain" China. Trump may be trying to treat Russia in the same way that Hitler forged an alliance with Japan before World War II. Trump may also perceive China as the main threat to America now like how Hitler viewed Britain then as the biggest stumbling block to his grand expansionist plan. Trump seems intent to provoke and infuriate China.

Trump does not seem to care for the environment. He poured scorn over the science of global warming and is trying to get the US out of the latest UN treaty on climate change. He has just signed an executive order to revive two large oil pipeline projects in the US which critics argue are bad for the environment.

His arrogance, self-denial and carelessness may cause his own downfall. He may be impeached by Congress, probably over a "conflict of interest" matter which his vast business empire may have with his executive position or if there is a case of "betrayal" or "treason" over some future event involving a foreign leader.

He has made enemies of his own powerful intelligence community and the big US news media, both of which he vehemently attacked and disparaged earlier.

Americans are not opposed to their president making lasting peace with Russia or collaborating with Russia to fight terrorism but they would be against any secret deals which may compromise the long-term interests of the US and its allies in the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation.

While Trump may have boasted about going for a second term, he may not even survive a full first term in office until 2021.

Let's pray that while serving as the commander-in-chief of America, Trump will not do anything which would lead to the destruction of humanity and if it were to happen, (he must know) it will certainly include himself, his family, relatives, friends and his business empire.

But why should we all die for Donald Trump?

The writer is an independent political analyst and strategist who believes that justice will eventually prevail. Comments: kktan@the sundaily.com