John Oliver was at his very best last night, denying Trump any kudos for the killing of ISIS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi. Instead, Oliver dedicated most of his program to how Trump destabilized the Middle East by allowing Erdogan and Putin to carve up Syria -- and allowing the escape of more than 100 ISIS members captured by the Kurds.
First, he ridiculed Trump's baffling version of the mission, and cast serious doubt on his decision making ability in serious situations.
"In classic Trump fashion, he was able to take something fundamentally positive and express it in the weirdest imaginable way because here is how he described the operation:
blasted their way into the house. They had a beautiful big hall and they ran in and they got everybody by surprise.
But he transitioned to the mess Trump created in Syria.
“It’s true, over a hundred ISIS prisoners escaped, and we don’t know where they are,” he said. “And the thing is, it gets even worse here. Because when you give a green light to an authoritarian, terrible things can happen—and terrible things very much did.”
He showed a video of a Turkish militia executing a Kurd by a Syrian roadside.
“That is horrifying, a potential war crime, and completely, completely avoidable. Yet astonishingly, even in the face of scenes like that, and over a hundred civilian deaths—Trump has tried to spin the carnage as evidence of his tactical genius,” he said.
He called Trump a "weird monster" for comparing the Syria situation to two kids fighting in a lot.
“I know that it is so easy to criticize anyone’s policy in this region. It is very complicated. Any move is going to have ripple effects, intended or otherwise. Syria was one of the biggest problem spots in Obama’s foreign policy,” he said.
“But it’s genuinely hard to get it this wrong. We took a fundamentally stable situation, betrayed a strategically vital ally, and immensely damaged our reputation.”