The Trump organisation denies a whole-hearted involvement in the Trump International Hotel and Tower Baku deal.

Trump’s past, just like the Baku hotel deal, will keep haunting him

There's a strong possibility that based on US laws the Trump organisation as well as Ivanka Trump may get in trouble.

Ahson Saeed Hasan March 10, 2017
Donald Trump has taken the US by storm; given a whole new meaning to the word ‘lie’; upped the deceit and trickery standards, raised the immorality bar, trashed government institutions and functionaries and consistently put to shame the entire country that he’s supposedly the leader of. Thus, it is hardly a matter of surprise when the press comes out with a news story or a scandal that involves him or his associates.

To be honest, the day I received an email alert from The New Yorker regarding Adam Davidson’s ‘Donald Trump’s Worst Deal’, I simply pushed the delete button and moved on with my day. You can well imagine how frustrated, more like exhausted, I am from these nasty tit bits that are now a parcel of the typical American news cycle. In essence, nothing surprises me anymore.

From Russia’s involvement in our presidential election to wiretapping claims; the bluntness and brashness of Trump himself; the lame surrender of the Republican Party to the virtual takeover of America by the first family that reminds one of the most notorious third world/developing countries (without naming names!) where populations are subjugated, squeezed under economic pressure, live in fear when presidential ordinances and executive order overpower constitutional systems. This is Trump’s America for you.

Granted Trump’s America or his convoluted image of the country does not envision or represent the real America, he nevertheless, for all intents and purposes, is the one who sets the tone and direction of the country. He is the chief navigator who up until now has waded through his dark and murky past, made it to the Oval Office and has done so far so good. Ironically while the so far so good guy mentioned in The Magnificent Seven was a risk unto himself, Trump can potentially run the entire country to the ground.

The New Yorker story has gained some traction. In fact, much to my liking, it’s been highlighted and discussed in other media outlets. Clearly, I was compelled to pay attention since this is about the Trump organisation dealing with one of the most notoriously corrupt regimes in the world, i.e. the brutes ruling over Azerbaijan.

And it doesn’t end here. There is an apparent involvement of the Iranian Revolutionary Guard in the scheme of things – a group that enjoys the support and patronage of the Ayatollahs. Mind you, Iran is a country that Trump is hell-bent on going to war against and is on record condemning the nuclear deal.

How does this all add up? According to Davidson’s story, the Trump organisation that now denies a whole-hearted involvement in the Trump International Hotel and Tower Baku deal, was in fact knee-deep into the matter and took care of the nitty gritty logistics like ordering furniture from Turkey and so on. They sent the president’s daughter, now a top White House advisor, Ivanka Trump, to review the progress in 2014. Ivanka proudly put her pictures on Instagram and hence provided living proof that it wasn’t just the lending of the Trump name in the deal. The Trumps were undoubtedly an inspiration behind the project.

Like any other scandalous activity, more than likely, this one may pass as well. However, if the current momentum carries on, there is a strong possibility that based on US laws (yes, remember those?!) the Trump organisation as well as Ivanka Trump may get in some kind of trouble. What might bite them in rear end is the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act of 1977 – a law that they clearly abused and blatantly violated.

Whereas I understand that the US is not necessarily or has never been the torchbearer of high moral values, still, it hasn’t been this precarious. Trump and his family have conflicts of interests wherever there’s civilisation on the face of God’s green earth. Look at how he bypassed Saudi Arabia and UAE from his travel ban. Ever wondered why? Well, he has personal business interests in those countries and henceforth despite their involvement in terrorism; those countries were not included in the list.

Trump’s shadiness is indisputable. He arm-twists the weak and flouts laws at will. The Baku episode is just another pathetic tale of Trump pushing his luck to unprecedented limits. Whereas I’m cautiously optimistic, with all else going on, one is sure the Azerbaijan story will die its own death.

With Americans so tied up and occupied in paying utility bills, car notes, housing rents and faced with rising healthcare costs and everything that effects their lives, no one has the time and opportunity for activism, come out on the streets to protest and check Trump’s vicious onslaught.

Moreover, in an era where nothing is off-limits and all bets are off, Trump’s presidency will only bring out more scandals and the worse in this nation of 300 million people. Being a disgrace to humanity, an unapologetic thug, and thrives amongst the thugs, folks like Mammadovs, the Keyumars and the Heydars are Trump’s everlasting allies and he counts on their thuggery.

This is as real as it gets. America is in an evil spin and Trump is thriving, for now. Have we reached a tipping point yet? I’m not sure because there is some good left and there are still some hopeless romantics, the dreamers and the idealists who are keeping an eye and are out to destroy Trump’s ‘snuggle team’.

I have faith that there’s someone somewhere within us who will rise up and burst the horrifying bubble we are breathing in. As Trump continues to recklessly destroy and polarise this country, his past, just like the Baku deal, will keep haunting him.

More importantly, he’s now realising that saying things confidently and making hollow promises cannot translate into practical steps. Trump might have taken America on a schizophrenic trip, he’ll soon understand that his personality disorder and psychotic tendencies will be eventually be checked by this nation’s powerful system and structure that we all trust and believe in. America may be sending out mixed messages for now but we’ll correct our course. We have no choice.
Ahson Saeed Hasan The writer is a proud American and a peacenik who has travelled to over 80 countries and lived in four continents. He tweets @tweetingacho (
The views expressed by the writer and the reader comments do not necassarily reflect the views and policies of the Express Tribune.

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siesmann | 3 years ago | Reply | Recommend Trump has a deep psychological conflict within him.He will end up in a mental institution ,and that is where he belongs.
Parvez | 3 years ago | Reply | Recommend Watching the news and reading the papers, I see the stock market is way up, industry is doing well, the job situation in improving, there really has not been a major ' incident ' for quite some time now ..... correct me if I'm wrong but this must be the first time that America has had a pure businessman ( possibly not a white-as-driven-snow businessman ) as its President and the system is adjusting to this ....and I feel it will adjust to it.
Patwari | 3 years ago The Man with the Yellow Hair has been in office less than two months. He is not responsible for the good economic reports in the US. Industry is doing the same as before. No magic Merlin wand change. A shirt that is made for $5 of labor in China cannot be made in US at $15 per hour labor and sold at Walmart or Macy's for $18/20 dollars. Nope. Obama's policies are the reason for the good economy. Which may slowly go back into a recession. As is about par, every few years. Some of the jobs simply CANNOT be brought back. No, not with Globalization "..the system is adjusting to this..[Trump]...?" adjusting to braggadocio? To telling lies?..[Obama tapped my phones, a lie that is being proven so] No release of taxes paid, OR not paid over the years. Attempting to build a border wall that ill cost $40 billion dollars not $12 OR $15 billion as is claimed by the 'Carnival Barker' and his henchmen. And, no, Mexico will NOT pay for the wall. An aura of fear and divisiveness all over the country. Repeal of Obamacare. A travel ban that is causing severe grief all over the immigrant communities in the US and the world. A severely discriminatory anti Muslim ban. 19 US states are fighting this ban, including Hawaii. A national security advisor fired. For lying. Time to come out from under your rock. Jingoist homilies are just ignorant homilies. Nothing more. Son of the great boxer Mohammad Ali was detained and questioned for two hours at Washington Dulles airport after returning from Jamaica. Because he is a Muslim. [his mother was detained along with him] Next time you visit the US you will be questioned and vetted at an airport. Unless you are already hunkered down there, with the wool over your eyes.
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