Some of Globe’s ‘Predictions’ for Trump’s America Have Already Come True

Boston Globe's Trump front pageOn Sunday, the Boston Globe published a mock front page, filled with ominous headlines and half-joking prognostications, to “warn” the GOP against nominating Donald Trump. A accompanying editorial proclaimed that Trump’s “vision for the future of our nation is as deeply disturbing as it is profoundly un-American.”

But what’s strange about this “satire” is how most of the things it’s warning about are already underway, or have long existed. Indeed, Trump’s vision isn’t un-American; it’s America on steroids.

The main headline for the piece warns of Trump initiating mass deportations of immigrants:

Deportations to Begin: President Trump Calls for Tripling of ICE Force; Riots Continue

But deportations can’t “begin” when they never stopped. From the Boston Globe itself two months ago: “Local Deportation Underscores Wider Immigration Debate.” In 2014, the National Council of La Raza called Obama the “deporter-in-chief” after he deported 2 million immigrants—more than any other president in history.

Another Globe mock headline reports, “US Soldiers Refuse Orders to Kill ISIS Families”—as if the US had never attacked families of its adversaries before. But in 2011, after a US drone assassinated alleged Al Qaeda propagandist (and US citizen) Anwar al-Awlaki in Yemen, another airstrike killed al-Awlaki’s 16-year-old son, Abdulrahman al-Awlaki, just two weeks later.

While the White House said the death of the younger al-Awlaki was an accident, the killing of innocents, including family members, when targeting alleged “terrorists” is a routine practice. According to one estimate, revealed by The Intercept in 2015, over 90 percent of the people killed in drone strikes during a one-month period in Afghanistan were not the “intended target.” The US has engaged in “double tap” drone strikes, where an attack on a suspected militant is followed by a second strike targeting rescue workers—or, in some cases, the first target’s funeral.

The Globe also criticized Trump for threats against journalists with the headline “New Libel Laws Target ’Absolute Scum’ in Press.” The Obama White House hasn’t used libel laws, but it has gone after journalists and their sources in an unprecedented manner, often using the 1917 Espionage Act. Of the 11 times US presidents have used the Espionage Act to punish  whistleblowing, seven have been under Obama. The Committee to Protect Journalists said in 2013 that Obama’s “war on leaks” was the most “aggressive since Nixon.”

None of which is to say things might not be far worse under a Trump presidency, a wildly unknown quantity from a bizarre personage. But election coverage that focuses entirely on personality misses the point: Many of these plans that Trump is advancing already exist, only to a lesser or more polite degree. A major publication making “satire” out of already-existing policies that are currently ruining people’s lives isn’t funny or courageous; it’s tone deaf and myopic.

Adam Johnson is a contributing analyst for Follow him on Twitter at @AdamJohnsonNYC.

This piece was reprinted by RINF Alternative News with permission from FAIR.