George Soros praised President Donald Trump’s strong stance against China and the telecom giant Huawei late Monday in a new op-ed for the Wall Street Journal. And it’s a safe bet that this will confuse a lot of Trump supporters.
Soros has traditionally been a boogeyman for the rightwing of the Republican Party, spawning conspiracy theories across the web that Soros is trying to “replace” white people in America by encouraging immigration to the U.S., among a host of other things. Trump supporters, including some white supremacist terrorists, have used this “Great Replacement” theory to justify their horrific attacks against people of color.
Soros, a billionaire investor and Holocaust survivor known for contributing to liberal causes, uses the op-ed to call China a “dangerous rival” to the U.S. in areas like artificial intelligence and machine learning. Soros celebrates the fact that the Trump regime has placed Huawei on the so-called Entity List and says that Trump’s actions against China have been the “greatest—and perhaps only—foreign policy accomplishment of the Trump administration.”
But Soros is concerned that President Trump may ultimately “sell out” the U.S. by including Huawei in some kind of trade deal that will weaken prohibitions against American companies doing business with the Chinese tech giant—strengthening Huawei’s position in 5G infrastructure around the globe.
From the WSJ:
Last year [Trump] lifted restrictions on ZTE, Huawei’s smaller rival, after it had evaded U.S. sanctions. If he gives Huawei a similar break, removing it from the entity list as part of a trade deal, the company could consolidate its leading position in the 5G market.
It’s hard to know exactly what’s motivating Mr. Trump, but he appears desperate for a deal with President Xi to bolster the U.S. stock market and economy to improve his chances at re-election—putting his electoral interests ahead of America’s interests.
Congress must prevent this from happening. Mr. Trump’s own Defense Department and National Security Council recognize the grave threat Huawei poses. If Republicans allow Mr. Trump to bail out the Communist Party-run telecom giant, they will be abdicating their most basic democratic responsibilities.
Soros is hedging his bets about Trump, but the op-ed will probably leave many Trump supporters confused about whether to continue calling Soros a danger to America. One Trump supporter, widely known as the MAGA bomber, even put a pipe bomb in Soros’ mailbox in late 2018. The MAGA bomber, Cesar Sayoc, was sentenced to 20 years in prison for his pipe bombs, which were also sent to Hillary Clinton, CNN, and former CIA chief John Brennan, among others.
Trump, a white supremacist who often uses coded language to inflame his supporters against Jewish people, has even mentioned Soros by name on various ocassions. During Brett Kavanaugh’s Supreme Court nomination hearing, for example, Trump said that protesters were being paid by people like George Soros.
“The very rude elevator screamers are paid professionals only looking to make Senators look bad. Don’t fall for it! Also, look at all of the professionally made identical signs. Paid for by Soros and others. These are not signs made in the basement from love!” Trump tweeted on October 5, 2018.
And when Trump held an impromptu rally in the East Wing of the White House later that month, one of his supporters shouted “Soros” after the president decried the “globalists” who were working against the American people. Others shouted “lock him up” and President Trump laughed before saying “lock him up” himself.
But we’ll see how long the Soros-Trump love affair lasts. As Soros says in the op-ed, Trump should use “Huawei’s status on the table as one of his bargaining chips” in a trade deal with China, but everything is always on the table with Trump. The president would sell out his own kids if it made him a buck. And with recent revelations that the CIA decided to extract a high level spy from Russia because they were concerned Trump might reveal highly classified intelligence, we know where the president’s loyalties rest. It’s not with the American people—it’s with himself and anything that will make him money in the long run.