The Associated Press is reporting that the Donald Trump campaign has fired its campaign manager once for the second time in three months, as Paul Manafort’s tenure has ended after only seven short weeks. his reign marked by an unprecedented shift towards a pro-Russia and anti-NATO foreign policy and by his inability to properly mitigate the damage done by Donald Trump’s insistence on pursuing a feud with the family of slain war hero Capt. Humayun Khan.
The move occurred just hours before these damning revelations were reported in Politico, which may explain the abrupt campaign reshuffle:
Donald Trump’s campaign chairman helped a pro-Russian governing party in Ukraine secretly route at least $2.2 million in payments to two prominent Washington lobbying firms in 2012, and did so in a way that effectively obscured the foreign political party’s efforts to influence U.S. policy. Under federal law, U.S. lobbyists must declare publicly if they represent foreign leaders or their political parties and provide detailed reports about their actions to the Justice Department. A violation is a felony and can result in up to five years in prison and a fine of up to $250,000.
Paul Manafort is notorious for his stint as campaign manager for the election of Putinist puppet Viktor Yanukovych in the Ukraine, who pillaged the country of wealth before being ousted in the 2014 Euromaidan Revolution and fleeing to Russia. “We joke in Ukraine that it is a bad sign for Trump that he hired Manafort. Because his client Yanukovych was ousted and fled to Russia, to the city of Rostov. So Trump could also end up in Rostov. It is almost like an anecdote” said political scientist Oleg Kravchenko. “It was a weird thing for the people in Ukraine, because they could not imagine how an American strategist agreed to cooperate with Putin’s friend. It was confusing. But Manafort played a decisive role in the victory of Yanukovych,”
For that reason, eyebrows were raised around the country when a man with noted ties to Vladimir Putin, dictator of the Russian Federation, took over control of Trump’s campaign. The nation watched in shock as Trump, who is clearly easily influenced by those advising him, began speaking almost immediately of reneging on America’s commitments to the collective security of Eastern Europe through the North Atlantic Treaty Organization. In the background, paid Russian internet trolls began flooding social media with pro-Trump propaganda, Russian state media began loudly stumping for Trump, and Russian-linked hackers began infiltrating the email servers of the Hillary Clinton Campaign and the Democratic National Committee.
Manafort will be replaced by Steve Bannon, CEO of the fascist hate-rag Breitbart News. Having just added disgraced FOX News CEO Roger Ailes to the squad yesterday, Trump has rid himself of Russian influence and handed his campaign entirely in the hands of two of the most dangerous conservative extremists in the world. The course election may have just shifted dramatically – few are quite as skilled at manipulation and exploitation as these two predatory demagogues. God only knows what they will do now that they have the delusional narcissism of Trump to work with.
Colin Taylor is the editor-in-chief of Occupy Democrats. He graduated from Bennington College with a Bachelor's degree in history and political science. He now focuses on advancing the cause of social justice and equality in America.