There are some real wackos giving Donald Trump advice on foreign policy. Shocking, I know.
Trump revealed a few of his advisors' names this week, and they're wackos—or, at least, we THINK they're wackos. It's hard to be sure. Mostly everyone's just like "who?" because no one has ever heard of them. That's definitely a good sign, right?
Here are their names: Joseph E. Schmitz, Gen. Keith Kellogg, Carter Page, George Papadopoulos and Walid Phares.
Do you know any of them? Do they shop at your supermarket? Have you ever gotten a X-mas card from any of them? Seriously, the whole world is trying to figure out what the deal is with these guys. (And of course they're all guys.)
Hilariously, Trump himself doesn't really seem to know who they are. In an interview with Fox News, one of the talking heads repeatedly referred to Walid Phares as Muslim, and Trump kept agreeing. There's just one problem — one of the few things that we do know about Phares is that he "trained Lebanese militants" for a group of Christian separatists, and did press conferences for "the Lebanese Forces, an umbrella group of Christian militias that has been accused of committing atrocities."
So, that's perfect. I'm sure he has plenty of good advice to share.
There's even less information about all the other rogues in the party. We do know that George Papadopoulos has the name that's the most fun to say, but other than that there's not much employment history ... mostly because he appears to have graduated college in 2009. One of his credentials is serving on Model UN.
Most of George Papadopoulos's work seems to be around oil and natural gas policy in the Middle East, and I have to assume there are least a few other people who have given that topic some thought. Why did Trump pick this kid, who's basically old enough to be fetching coffee, to be an advisor? Who knows. Maybe he just did a really good job fetching coffee.
Then there's Carter Page, who sounds like a character in a romance novel whose greatest accomplishment is having unruly hair.
And how about Joseph E. Schmitz, who was forced to leave a job at the Pentagon over accusations of wrongdoing. Apparently he was the Inspector General for a bit during the Bush years, and according to just about everyone he made it impossible to investigate how Bush officials benefited financially from the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.
After leaving that job, he went to work at Blackwater, the creepy security company that killed various people in war zones. You might also be interested to know that he is obsessed with German military tactics, and even replaced a Pentagon logo with the slogan of Baron Friedrich Wilhelm Von Steuben.
And oh, it gets better: he's a member of the Sovereign Military Order of Malta, "a Christian militia formed in the eleventh century, before the first Crusades, with the mission of defending ‘territories that the Crusaders had conquered from the Muslims.'"
So on one hand, that this group of weirdos is attached to the Republican front-running is terrifying. On the other... well, no, there's no other hand, we should all just be very afraid.