Australians are a very nice bunch of people on the whole. They love sun, surf, sport and Christmas during summer. They’ve also fought on our side in every single war since World War I. That list even includes Vietnam! Nobody wanted to help us during Vietnam! But the Australians were there, fighting and dying in the jungles of southeast Asia while the rest of our allies were (smartly) sitting that one out.
Australia is such a trusted nation that they are part of our “Five Eyes arrangement“. This is an alliance made up of Australia, Canada, New Zealand, the United Kingdom and the United States. All these countries share intelligence freely with each other. It’s basically an espionage club for like-minded countries and Australia is a leading member of it.
Well that special relationship is now in jeopardy thanks to Donald Trump and his temper. According to the Washington Post, things got so heated on a Saturday phone call between him and Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull (who is also a conservative politician!) that Trump began shouting at him and eventually hung up on the shocked PM.
At issue were the 1,250 refugees America is supposed to take from Australian detention centers. This was a deal made by the Obama administration that Trump was unaware of. Gee, you think it might benefit the President to start prepping before he talks to world leaders?
At one point Trump bragged to Turnbull that he had spoken with four other world leaders that day and said “this was the worst call by far.” He also pulled the same move he has with other heads of sate he’s spoken to and bragged about the size of his inauguration crowds and his electoral college victory.
Eventually returning to the issue of refugees, Trump said it was “the worst deal ever” and complained he would get “killed” over it politically. He also accused Australia of trying to send America the next “Boston bombers”. Turnbull attempted to calm the angry POTUS by saying the U.S. didn’t have to actually commit to taking the refugees to honor the deal, but if they did they could certainly vet them first.
This did nothing to appease Trump and he eventually hung up on Turnbull mid-conversation. Of note is that the Australian PM is reported to have given as good as he got, but obviously had hoped the call would be more pleasant.
This bullying tactic has not gone over well down under and this is how the Australian media is reporting on it. Folks, this is getting embarrassing. Sigh.
Trump was "yelling" on the phone with Australia's prime minister, hung up mid-conversation, Australian TV reporting pic.twitter.com/rVaMi4ob7M
— Bradd Jaffy (@BraddJaffy) February 2, 2017
The White House is trying to spin it as a pleasant conversation and their official statement says the call “emphasized the enduring strength and closeness of the U.S.-Australia relationship that is critical for peace, stability, and prosperity in the Asia-Pacific region and globally.” However officials in the White House are disputing that version of events to reporters.
The butt hurt President took to Twitter Wednesday night to further vent about the potential agreement. Turnbull has yet to @ reply him.
Do you believe it? The Obama Administration agreed to take thousands of illegal immigrants from Australia. Why? I will study this dumb deal!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) February 2, 2017
What word leader will Donald Trump piss off next? Who knows? But let’s hope they realize he does not speak for all Americans. Maybe this tweet sums it up best.
We fucking hate him too.
— Sean Kent (@seankent) February 2, 2017
This is a developing story. Stay tuned to this space for updates.