A leaked British diplomatic cable from the UK ambassador to the US sums up the Trump White House as a dumpster fire that won't be put out anytime soon.
"We don't really believe this administration is going to become substantially more normal; less dysfunctional; less unpredictable; less faction riven; less diplomatically clumsy and inept," [ambassador Kim] Darroch wrote in one of a series of leaked documents covering the period from 2017 to the present.The British government responded in a un-Trumplike manner. It didn't throw its ambassador under the bus. No, it did the Tammy Wynette thing, it stood by its man.
Britain's Foreign Office did not challenge the authenticity of the leaked documents. It called the leak "mischievous behaviour" and said the public expects diplomats to provide honest assessments of the politics in the countries where they are posted.
Justice Secretary David Gauke called the leak "disgraceful" but said Britain "should expect our ambassadors to tell the truth, as they see it."The lights must have been burning late into the night in Washington embassies last night as diplomatic staff scurried around to make sure their own candid assessments were safely under lock and key.
Meanwhile, Trump's short game won't be helped by word that the president's ex-play pal, Jeffrey Epstein, has been arrested on new juvenile sex trafficking charges. This time the charges weren't brought by the Miami office but by the Manhattan federal prosecutor's office, the Southern District of New York and it involves staff from the public corruption unit.
These events raise plenty of questions. Why the SDNY? Epstein's reputed sex ring operated in Florida and on his private Caribbean island. How did SDNY get the file? Was this one of the prosecutions farmed out to local justice department offices by Robert Mueller? Did he choose to get the file out of Florida?
In a wry twist, one of the several prosecutors working for the SDNY is James Comey's daughter, Maurene Comey. There's not a chance she'll be allowed anywhere near this file, especially not with the political corruption aspect in play, but that won't stop Trump from calling the whole thing a witch hunt.