Friday, January 20, 2017

Kissing Trump's rump: Mexican gov't response to the inauguration

First there was the extradition of Joaquín "Chapo" Guzmán, reputed head of the Sinaloa drug cartel, carefully timed for the eve of Trump's inauguration so it would not simply be overlooked if done on Friday.

Then there was the announcement, also on Thursday, that newly-minted foreign minister Luis Videgaray would be heading to Washington next week and would meet with the triumvirate just below Trump in the new administration's pecking order: Jared Kushner, son-in-law and senior adviser, Stephen Bannon, alt-right media provocateur and senior advisor, and Reince Priebus, Republican establishment stalwart and chief of staff.

Videgaray was the "genius" who arranged last August's visit by Trump, going around the foreign ministry, and got thrown out of the cabinet as a sop to Mexicans outraged by the country's humiliation. Admitting he knew nothing about diplomacy and international relations, he became foreign minister a couple of weeks ago, having been praised by Trump last August and having been for years Peña Nieto's most trusted aide.

Finally, after the inauguration, Mexican President Peña Nieto twitted his congratulations to Trump and said his government would have a "respectful dialogue" with Trump's regime. That might sound like normal diplomatic blather except that Trump has been completely undiplomatic in his hostility towards México.

So the real message is one of complete submission, presumably with the hope that Trump will spare Peña Nieto further humiliation. But quite likely it will have the opposite effect, only further encouraging Trump to use Mexico as a punching bag to promote his xenophobic, chauvinist "America First" message.

No comments:

Post a Comment