The big news that broke Tuesday and widely reported and discussed, at least in America, and far more than any other big news story and there are many that merit coverage, was President Trump firing his head of the FBI, James Comey, and with the ruthlessness that once was associated with Trump the businessman.
As with so many news stories, much as I would like to have been a fly on the wall, I can only go by what is reported in the various mainstream and alternative media and weigh the various analysis and opinions as to the rightness or otherwise of Trump’s decision and possible implications. I know too little about Comey to come up with a rounded opinion concerning his character and as for his job performance I do not qualify, although seeing him evade so many of the questions in the various high level public hearings going on and his giving the impression of chopping and changing on many issues, in particular Hillary’s emails, hardly bodes well. I sense too there was a certain arrogancein the way Coney conducted himself, and calling his boss “crazy” for his “wiretapping” claims seems to bear this out. I suspect those who know Coney and the context he operates in will have each their own opinion and my gut tells me Trump understands this well. I wonder what those working at grass roots level of the FBI think and to what extent the swamp had infiltrated the organisation? It is ironic in recent months both Democrats and Republicans have changed their tune regarding Coney, based on whether he was helping their cause at the time.
There are as expected a variety of reactions to the sackings, which are duly noted. There are some who consider Trump has something to hide and like those previously fired who got to a position that could make a wrongdoing President uncomfortable he was sacked. I have little doubt there are those who want any excuse to impeach Trump and this may be one to add to the pile. Others have noted that when it comes to matters like Obama wiretapping and Hillary’s misuse of confidential emails and closing in on the link between Russian hacking and possible collusion with Trump and his team he moved too slow. I suspect Trump had been contemplating firing Coney for a while, although we cannot be certain, but he needed a solid excuse. This came in the way of advice given by the Attorney General and his deputy Coney was poorly performing and needed to go. This was the trigger Trump needed and the rest is history.
Obviously politics is a precarious business and politicians are often not seen as those who make noble decisions that are in the best interest of the people they are meant to represent, and more their own, and Trump is likely no exception. Having followed a number of reports along the pro / anti Trump spectrum of opinion, I am of the view that Trump made the right decision. He needs to have good people around him in who he has confidence; the stakes are too high to contemplate anything else, and as with all jobs if someone does not do the job as required, he / she must go. I find in any job and particularly in one as important as Director of the FBI, and all that represents (which represents a considerable range of activities), it is important the office holder carries out his duties in an effective and impartial manner and is seen to do so. Given Trump concluded this was not the case, this was good enough reason for dismissing Coney.
While I believe Russian hacking has been elevated out of proportion to what went on and I doubt there is a meaningful connection to Trump, I accept investigations should take place, along with a need to get to the bottom of the “wiretapping” and information leaking accusations that have been made (including by the President) and to decide once and for all what really went on in the way data was handled regarding Hillary’s servers, and if illegal use had been made. I suspect many who work in the FBI are dedicated officers who are truly committed to upholding the US constitution and doing the very things the FBI had been set up to do. I have qualms if that is always true at the highest levels and I have more than an inkling illegal or dubious activity has taken place, likely linked to the “Deep State”, and it is therefore important to restore confidence in the FBI.
It will be interesting to see who takes over as FBI director. I know too little about the personalities that may be in the frame to take over from Coney, but I hope he/she will be completely non-partisan and highly competent and dedicated, with high ethical standards, who will be able to do the job with minimal interference, including from the President, yet fully accountable and scrutinized. If one is serious about draining the swamp, this is in part what is needed.