Washington D.C., United States – President Trump met with Polish President Andrzej Duda this week to discuss things they are probably not going to do together and to avoid certain topics outright. The most significant item to be avoided on their anti-agenda proved to be a hypothetical military base the two men have been discussing for years. In fact, “Fort Trump” was never mentioned at all.
Having spent much of his political career fanning the flames of racism against Black and brown people, Trump hopped over to Poland this week, seemingly bored of failing his own nation and feeling nostalgic for the days when he used to exploit Polish people in his private life as a wealthy inheritor turned failed businessman.
And this week, more than ever before, Trump’s Polish knockoff seemed ready to be exploited.
Over recent days, Duda has been directing hateful rhetoric at the LGBT community — presumably because he is unable to promote racism in his racially-homogenous country to the same extent as his role model on the other side of the Atlantic. The meeting with Trump so soon before the elections, a situation which better U.S. presidents have avoided, was more red meat for Duda’s pro-American and pro-Trump base of supporters.
In other words, this week would have been the perfect opportunity for Trump to ask for something from Duda.
But though the situation sounds like the perfect storm for a Trump-Kim-style bromance, the two authoritarian-leaning presidents avoided even discussing Fort Trump, making the imaginary military installation reminiscent of Trump’s fanciful promise to build a wall along the southern U.S. border with Mexico.
Knowing that the American president loves to be flattered and have his name put on things that don’t belong to him, President Duda was the one to originally offer the name “Fort Trump.” And unlike Trump’s border wall, which Mexico categorically refused to pay for, Duda was even ready to invest $2 billion into the vanity project — which put Duda in the same situation as many of Trump’s supporters, who at one point started raising money for the border wall themselves.
But like the border wall, Trump either never had any intention of doing anything about Fort Trump, or — as a new tell-all book from his administration suggests — he simply forgot about it.
So what did the two world leaders accomplish during their meetings this week? A world leader meeting with a U.S. president days before an election is regarded by some as a form of election interference — so the will to be anti-democratic is still there. Trump also said that he would “probably” reassign Americans stationed in Germany to Poland — meaning that it “probably” won’t happen. There was also a good photo op.
Other than that, it would be fair to say that the two men accomplished nothing.
As with the border wall, Trump is continuing to define his political career with the expression “the Emperor has no clothes.” And Duda, by tying his reelection prospects to Trump, has proven himself to be even more pathetic — regardless of whether he’ll continue shaming Poland as its president.