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Book Reviews

‘Oval Office Akin to a Star Wars Bar Scene During Trump’s Final Days’

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By IANS Updated: Aug 22, 2021 11:09 pm
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“We won. Won in a landslide. This was a landslide,” Donald Trump had declared on January 6, triggering a violent attack by his supporters on the US Capitol in Washington seeking to overturn his defeat in the 2020 Presidential elections by disrupting a joint session of the Congress to count the electoral votes that would formalise Joe Bidens victory.

The building was vandalised for several hours. Five people died either shortly before, during or after the mayhem: One was shot by Capitol Police, one died of a drug overdose and three succumbed to natural causes. Scores were injured, including 138 police officers. Four officers who responded to the riot committed suicide within seven months of the incident.

The Capitol was cleared of the rioters only by mid-evening.

Politics has given some shocking and confounding moments, but none have come close to the careening final days of Donald Trump’s presidency: The surreal stage management of his re-election campaign, his audacious election challenge, the harrowing mayhem of the storming of the Capitol and the buffoonery of the second impeachment trial.

But what was really going on in the inner sanctum of the White House during these calamitous events? What did the President and his dwindling cadre of loyalists actually believe? And what were they planning?

Drawing on an exclusive and wide range of sources who took part in or witnessed Trump’s closing moments, award-winning author Michael Wolff finds the Oval Office more chaotic and bizarre than ever before, a kind of “Star Wars” bar scene.

At all times of the day, Trump, hunched behind the Resolute desk, is surrounded by schemers and unqualified sycophants who spoon-feed him the “alternative facts” he hungers to hear — about Covid-19, Black Lives Matter protests, and, most of all, his chance of winning the re-election.

In this extraordinary telling of a unique moment in history, Wolff gives readers front row seats as Trump’s circle of plotters whittles down to the most enabling and the least qualified – and the president overreaches the bounds of democracy, entertaining the idea of martial law and balking at calling off the insurrectionist mob that threatens the hallowed seat of democracy itself.

Wolff pulled back the curtain on the Trump presidency with his globally bestselling “Fire and Fury” and “Siege”.

Now, in “Landslide – The Final Days of the Trump Presidency” (Little Brown), he completes the trilogy with a final, astonishingly candid tale.

Wolff has received numerous awards for his work, including two National Magazine Awards. He has been a regular columnist for Vanity Fair, New York, the Hollywood Reporter, British GQ, USA Today and the Guardian. He is the author of seven books, including the international phenomenon “Fire and Fury”, the bestselling “Burn Rate” and “The Man Who Owns the News”.

He lives in Manhattan and has four children.

6091
By IANS Updated: Aug 22, 2021 11:09:24 pm