Last night, Trump’s National Security Advisor, ret. LTG Michael Flynn, resigned after fallout from his deception regarding his communication with Russian representatives brought increased attention to Trump’s ties with Russia. Flynn, widely criticized by opponents and colleagues alike as being a nut given to flights of right-wing fantasy, leaves the Trump administration after less than a month of service. This marks Flynn’s second big career failure: he was fired from his position as Director of the Defense Intelligence Agency in 2014.
This came as a surprise to me when I heard the news last night and, as resignation letters always do, Flynn’s resignation letter makes it appear as if it was his own decision to resign, but I have little doubt that he was forced out. Flynn’s recent contradictory statements regarding his communications with Russia, recently uncovered by the Washington Post, have brought Trump’s connection to Russia once again into the lime light. Some sources have reported that Flynn was let go because he had lost Trump’s trust, but it appears to me that the Trump administration is attempting to distance itself from Flynn, painting him as a rogue agent. He’s a patsy, or scapegoat, if you will.
But don’t get me wrong. I don’t feel sorry for Flynn at all. I’m glad he’s out. Flynn’s a nutjob and needs to be very far away from any sort of policy making. But he was, and is, just a tool and tools can be replaced. Additionally, just because he has left Trump’s administration officially doesn’t mean he won’t serve a different capacity behind the scenes.
True to form, the Trump administration is attempting to deflect attention away from Flynn’s actual conduct and instead trying to get people to focus on the “leaks” that brought attention to Flynn’s dealings. Trump tweets:
The real story here is why are there so many illegal leaks coming out of Washington? Will these leaks be happening as I deal on N.Korea etc?
6:28 AM – 14 Feb 2017
The fact that Trump, not even a full month into his presidency, can’t keep an administration together is telling, but Team Trump was dysfunctional from the get-go. Now under the pressure of the real-life-no-shit job of leading America the cracks are showing.