Monday, June 3, 2019

Trump In London: Mayor “Shorty” Khan A Stone-cold-loser

LONDON — President Trump met Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Charles at Buckingham Palace on Monday, beginning three days of royal feting and carefully calibrated diplomacy. The royals had lunch and a tea with Trump. They showed him old paintings of George Washington and an honor guard in scarlet tunics.

But first, Trump mocked the relatively popular London mayor as a “stone cold loser” — and short in stature. And then Trump complained at length on Twitter about CNN news coverage of his trip, which had only just begun.

The president and first lady Melania Trump were greeted at the satellite Stansted Airport by Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt — but not by Prime Minister Theresa May, who is being ousted over Brexit. President Trump’s official state visit coincides with a furious contest to replace May. It is all a bit awkward. Not that the British will mention it, much.

At Buckingham Palace, the president appeared to enjoy himself immensely as he strode the ranks of the queen’s guards decked out in black bearskin hats and scarlet jackets. There were two 41-gun salutes.

Britain is deeply anti-Trump. An Ipsos MORI poll last year found 19 percent of Brits had a favorable view of him, while 68 percent had an unfavorable view. Some of that sentiment was visible Monday. Amnesty International unfurled banners from London bridges with the captions “Resist Trump,” “Resist Racism” and “Resist Sexism.”

But the major demonstration is scheduled for Tuesday, when of thousands of protesters are expected to pack London’s Trafalgar Square. A giant balloon depicting Trump as a diaper-clad baby is expected to take flight, and opposition Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn is scheduled to address the crowds.

London Mayor Sadiq Khan, a Muslim and the son of a Pakistani immigrant bus driver, has become the rhetorical leader of London’s resistance to the president. He vocally objected to “rolling out the red carpet” for Trump with a state visit. And, writing in the Guardian newspaper Sunday, he said Trump used the language of the “fascists of the 20th century.”

As his plane was touching down, Trump responded by criticizing Khan’s record as mayor and mocking his height. (Khan is 5-foot-6.) Trump also misspelled his name. “@SadiqKhan, who by all accounts has done a terrible job as Mayor of London, has been foolishly ‘nasty’ to the visiting President of the United States, by far the most important ally of the United Kingdom. He is a stone cold loser who should focus on crime in London, not me,” Trump wrote on Twitter.

“Kahn reminds me very much of our very dumb and incompetent Mayor of NYC, de Blasio, who has also done a terrible job — only half his height. In any event, I look forward to being a great friend to the United Kingdom, and am looking very much forward to my visit. Landing now!”

Khan’s spokesman said such “childish insults” should be “beneath the president of the United States.” On Monday afternoon, Khan posted a video message that began, “President Trump, if you are watching this, your values, and what you stand for, are the opposite of London’s values and the values of this country.” Khan also criticized Trump for inserting himself into the internal politics of Britain.

Trump arrived at a sensitive political moment in Britain. May will officially leave her post as leader of the Conservative Party on Friday. The contest to replace her is in full swing, with at least 13 candidates known to have thrown their hats in the ring. The winner is expected to be announced in July.

London Muslim mayor Sadiq Khan has said Donald Trump should not be granted a state visit in Britain, branding him part of the “global threat” of a rising “far right” — and accusing Nigel Farage and national populist leaders like Italy’s Matteo Salvini and Hungary’s Viktor Orbán of emulating “20th-century fascists”.

The Labour politician accused Mr Trump of using “xenophobia, racism and ‘otherness’ as an electoral tactic”, “Introducing a travel ban to a number of predominately Muslim countries”, and “Lying deliberately and repeatedly to the public”, among a host of other allegations, comparing the American leader’s actions to “the actions of European dictators of the 1930s and 40s… the military juntas of the 1970s and 80s… Vladimir Putin or Kim Jong-un” in an article for the left-liberal Observer.

“Donald Trump is just one of the most egregious examples of a growing global threat,” declared Khan, who has repeatedly attacked the U.S. President for his tough stances on border security and Islamist terrorism.

“The far right is on the rise around the world… Viktor Orbán in Hungary, Matteo Salvini in Italy, Marine Le Pen in France and Nigel Farage here in the UK are using the same divisive tropes of the fascists of the 20th century to garner support,” he claimed, warning that they are “using new sinister methods to deliver their message” (while avoiding specifics on what these methods might be).

Khan, who once fought for the Nation of Islam’s racist, anti-Semitic leader Louis Farrakhan to be admitted to Britain, declared it was “un-British to be rolling out the red carpet this week for a formal state visit” for the U.S. President, who he claimed did not represent America’s values of “equality, liberty, and religious freedom.”

“[A]t what point should we stop appeasing – and implicitly condoning – his far-right policies and views? Where do we draw the line?” Khan demanded. “Rather than bestowing Trump with a grand platform of acceptability to the world, we should be speaking out and saying that this behaviour is unacceptable – and that it poses a grave threat to the values and principles we have fought hard to defend – often together – for decades,” the anti-Brexit politician insisted.

President Trump has not been shy about firing back at Khan in the past, taking him to task for claiming that there was “no reason to be alarmed” after a radical Islamic terrorist attack centred on London Bridge and Borough Market which involved a vehicle attack and several rampaging knifemen.

“At least 7 dead and 48 wounded in terror attack and Mayor of London says there is ‘no reason to be alarmed!'” the President tweeted incredulously. “We must stop being politically correct and get down to the business of security for our people. If we don’t get smart it will only get worse,” he added.

Terror attacks and violent crime, particularly knife crime, have risen precipitously in Britain’s hyper-diverse capital during Khan’s mayoralty — driven in part by his pre-election pledge to “do all in my power” to cut the use of police stop-and-search, which he regarded as implicitly racist — and Mr Trump has not hidden his belief that the Labour politician has done “a terrible job”.

UK Foreign Sec Hunt welcoming Trump at Stansted Airport, England.
UK Foreign Sec Backs Trump After ‘Stone Cold Loser’ Comments

LONDON, ENGLAND - JUNE 03: Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt greets US President Donald Trump as he arrives at Stansted Airport on June 3, 2019 in London, England.

The UK’s foreign secretary Jeremy Hunt has refused to criticise U.S. President Donald J Trump for calling the leftist London mayor, Sadiq Khan, a “stone cold loser”. President Trump has hit back at Mayor Khan, who on Sunday called the leader of the United States a “global threat”, saying on Twitter that Khan had “done a terrible job as Mayor of London”.

“He is a stone cold loser who should focus on crime in London, not me,” President Trump continued before landing in the UK on Monday morning. “[Khan] reminds me very much of our very dumb and incompetent Mayor of NYC, de Blasio, who has also done a terrible job – only half his height. In any event, I look forward to being a great friend to the United Kingdom, and am looking very much forward to my visit. Landing now!” he added.

Trump was met on the tarmac of London Stansted airport by Tory leadership hopeful and foreign secretary Jeremy Hunt. In an interview with Sky News after greeting the President, journalist Adam Boulton asked Mr Hunt it he condemned the comments about London’s anti-Trump mayor, with the foreign secretary refusing to do so, saying instead that it was Khan who had started the feud.

“Well, the elected mayor of London has made some pretty choice insults about Donald Trump, and all I would say is that that spate started because the mayor of London, and other people in the Labour Party, decided to boycott this visit. And I think that is just totally inappropriate,” Mr Hunt said.

The foreign secretary also refused to entertain the belief held by the far-left and progressive wings of the British political establishment that it may have been “inappropriate” to invite President Trump for a State Visit.

“What is really inappropriate, is for anyone to boycott a visit by the President of the United States,” Mr Hunt said, in relation to the leader of the Liberal Democrats Vince Cable, Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn, Speaker of the House of Commons John Bercow, and the London mayor voicing their opposition to the visit. “This is a State Visit, not a political visit, he’s been hosted by Her Majesty the Queen to mark the great friendship between our two country,” he added.

“For the Labour Party to be boycotting this visit on the grounds of sexism and racism in a day where their candidate in the Peterborough by-election is being accused of liking an antisemitic post on Facebook, when they are being accused of turning a blind eye to the terrible behaviour in the Labour Party HQ, this is about virtue signalling on Labour’s behalf, this isn’t about any position of principle,” the foreign secretary said.

President Trump is in the UK for a three-day State Visit, as guest of the Queen, where he will meet with the monarch, Prime Minister Theresa May, and take part a commemoration ceremony marking the 75th anniversary of the D-Day landings.