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  • Tuesday marks Donald Trump's last full day as president of the United States.

  • Trump will leave the White House with what some opinion polls say are the lowest approval ratings of his four year presidency.

  • He will also leave Washington D.

  • C.

  • In a state of high alert.

  • The FBI is vetting all 25,000 service personnel involved in President elect Joe Biden's inauguration on Wednesday.

  • Officials have expressed concern about a possible insider attack or other potential threat.

  • Now security concerns have gripped the city since a violent mob stormed the capital on January 6th.

  • Downtown Washington usually buzzing with people and traffic, now a ghost town on the other side, traffic jams and checkpoints, a city split into the center has become a militarized zone and the U.

  • S Capitol remains under a strict lock down just days before the presidential inauguration.

  • We are just outside the clothes perimeter and this is us close as the general public can get to the U.

  • S.

  • Capitol, which is currently cordoned off by a 3 m high fence and razor wire which is currently installed on top of the fence.

  • We're going to go inside that perimeter now to get a glimpse on the preparations that are underway for on Inauguration Day that will be unlike any other in American history.

  • Soldiers, instead of visitors on 25,000 members of the National Guard, are securing the Capitol grounds.

  • There has been some concern about a potential inside threat, as not everyone is happy with the new president.

  • It's a sticky situation is forced politically on.

  • Uh, of course I have my own.

  • I have my own thoughts politically, but in uniforms, you know I can't convey them.

  • But I'm here to do a job.

  • I'm here to follow what our organization is doing, and then we're carrying on with that mission.

  • Ladies and gentlemen, the president elect of the United States, Joseph R.

  • Biden Jr on the west side of the U.

  • S.

  • Capitol.

  • Some normalcy is coming back.

  • Rehearsals and sound checks where two weeks ago, thousands off Trump supporters stormed the symbol off American democracy.

  • Rehearsals for the inauguration ceremony were just completed, and on this very long, usually thousands gathered to cheer for their new president.

  • Will this year many things will be different.

  • Fear of an attack on the president means a ceremony with hardly any guests.

  • The National Mall will remain shut down, and authorities asked citizens to stay far away for the sake off their own safety.

  • In the downtown area, buildings have bean boarded up again after a year of protests and a pandemic.

  • These views have become a common sight for many Washingtonians, but businesses are suffering.

  • The business was bad from last eight months because we in the commercial area, this is the commercial hub.

  • All the offices around us are close, and the security has beefed of so much.

  • You can't even we have a little bit of a delivery business.

  • But mostly all the roads are closed, a life behind fences and roadblocks.

  • Those who live here can't wait until the new president is sworn in.

  • And from where I am joined by DW correspondent William Glue Croft, William.

  • What's expected on Inauguration Day?

  • And how long could these increased security measures last?

  • Well, as we just saw in the report, huge security presence more than double the number of National Guard troops at this inauguration than normal inaugurations.

  • Of course.

  • Ah, presidential inauguration of presidential event is always going to be very high security, but there's all these extra layers that we've been hearing about the last several days since that attack on the U.

  • S.

  • Capitol by a mostly white fundamentalist mob.

  • Really?

  • Andi the threat.

  • The acute threat is being said that it might extend till Thursday, a day after the inauguration.

  • But let's not forget that these far right groups he's white supremacist groups.

  • He's anti government groups.

  • They did not start in this election cycle.

  • They're not gonna end in this election cycle.

  • And while Washington has long been very high security zone, especially since post 9 11, it was always looking towards an international, particularly an Islamist threat.

  • But if you watch a lot of that video from inside the Capitol, and I've watched a lot of it, Ah, lot of the language and the religious imagery from these people professing to be Christians very similar to the kind of Islamist extremism that we saw that we've been, you know, hearing threats about for decades now.

  • And that threat is gonna gonna continue into the Biden administration, as FBI and law enforcement officials have long said, has long been a threat towards the United States.

  • A pretty bleak picture you're painting Also, I'd like to ask you about another aspect here.

  • We know that outgoing President Donald Trump has not been seen in public for a week.

  • What has he been up to?

  • Well, as you mentioned at the top before that report, he made the statement that there he was gonna allow travel, especially from Europe again because of the United States is going to start requiring negative test proof of negative tests if you're coming into the country.

  • The bizarre thing is, of course, that's gonna happen starting January 26 which is six days after Donald Trump ceases being president and Joe Biden becomes president Biden administration.

  • So that's just not gonna happen.

  • They're gonna continue, you know, keeping the Corona dragnet, so to speak.

  • Ah, very much present.

  • Uh, it should be known that there's been really mixed signals from the scientific community, this entire pandemic, whether blanket travel bans even work if they're the most effective way to control the virus.

  • But the CDC, the Centers for Disease Control, has said that by March there fearing that the dominant strain infecting people in spreading in the United States is going to be this extra extra viral in strain that we've seen starting in England in the last several weeks, and that's what they're trying to prevent.

  • William just quickly Trump planning to pardon as many as 100 people in his last day in office, according to reports.

  • What are you hearing?

  • That's right.

  • And I think, more importantly on who might be on the list is who doesn't appear to be on that list, which has many of the controversial figures in Trump's inner circle.

  • Members of his family who have not been charged with any crimes but could theoretically be preemptively pardoned.

  • Even Donald Trump himself preemptively pardoned, which would be, of course, a very constitutionally questionable.

  • And also his aides are saying, Don't do that because it would incriminate him.

  • It would be basically an admission of wrongdoing, but he's still president through noon on Wednesday, and he can effectively do whatever he wants in that realm of pardoning.

  • We'll have to see what actually comes out of his announcements.

  • William Glue Croft breaking it down for us, Thank you.

  • Well, now to Jesus Christ and Donald Trump, Evangelical Christians, they played a prominent role in the story of the capital in January 6, and they have counted among Donald Trump's most devoted supporters during his presidency.

  • Exit polls showed that three quarters of white evangelicals voted for Trump in November, a number virtually unchanged since 2016.

  • They stood behind the president despite the multiple accusations of sexual assault against him and his repeated lives to the American people.

  • So how can we explain this zealous devotion to a leader who's an unrepentant sinner?

  • My next guest says.

  • It may have not so much to do with prayer and more to do with power.

  • Katherine Stewart is the author of the book The Power Worshippers.

  • Inside the Dangerous Rise of Religious Nationalism.

  • Catherine joins Me Tonight, Kevin.

  • It's good to have you on the program when we talk about Trump's base.

  • We're including evangelical Christians who share a vision of the U.

  • S.

  • And and that vision.

  • Correct me if I'm wrong here.

  • But that vision would render separation of church and state meaningless.

  • That's absolutely right.

  • Christian nationalism eyes central to any explanation of the crisis that we're seeing in America today.

  • You really can't explain how Trump came to power and how so many other leaders on the sort of Republican side of the political aisle are hostile to democracy.

  • Unless you know something about this movement and the attraction to Donald Trump, um, it can't come from his religious convictions.

  • I mean, this is a man who has bragged about rarely, if ever, going to church.

  • I mean, is this where religious strains merge with those in a culture war in the United States?

  • Is that what we see?

  • Absolutely.

  • It's a form of identity politics and that it ties the idea of America to specific religious and cultural identities.

  • So Christian nationalism, let's make clear it's not a religion.

  • It's, um, radically anti democratic political ideology that makes use of religion.

  • It's sort of exploits religion for political purposes, and it's also a device for mobilizing people to vote in support of the hyper conservative candidates that the movement favors.

  • On its, um, you know, I mentioned earlier, it's radically anti democratic.

  • It's, you know, I I use the term religious nationalism in the subtitle of my book, because it makes clear its similarities with other forms of religious nationalism around the world.

  • So when you see leaders like Putin in Russia or Erdogan in Turkey or Orban in Hungary.

  • When these leaders bind themselves to conservative religious authorities in other countries in order Thio consolidate.

  • Ah, more authoritarian form of political power.

  • We rightly see this as a form of religious nationalism, and that's what we saw with Donald Trump.

  • He was basically exploiting religion for political purposes.

  • And is there?

  • Is there a next generation in US politics?

  • Um, that represents uneven mawr developed sense of this, uh, religious nationalism.

  • I'm thinking, for example, of Josh Holly in the U.

  • S.

  • Congress.

  • Absolutely.

  • You know, leaders like Josh Holy and Ted Cruz and many other Republican leaders are also exploiting the rhetoric of religious nationalism, trying to draw people to their side.

  • And often they do it by through these so called culture wars through these issues, like abortion or same sex marriage and the like.

  • They know very well if you can get people to vote on one or two issues, you can control their vote.

  • You know, over the last decade that I've been researching my this movement.

  • I goto innumerable right wing on Christian national strategy meetings and gatherings on bond events like this, and many of the movement leaders will talk about how important it is to create single issue voters because they know if they could get the rank and file to sort of play along and vote on abortion, they can control their vote, and then they use it to enact a wildly anti Democratic agenda and also an agenda.

  • That's not just about abortion has a lot to do with economic policy and foreign policy and things that those sort of, you know anti abortion voters may not themselves agree with.

  • Yeah, and this agenda, of course, often times it ends up in the courts.

  • And there we talk about maybe the legacy of Donald Trump.

  • He was able to appoint a record number of federal judges.

  • He appointed three Supreme Court justices.

  • They're all conservative Supreme Court judges, social conservatives.

  • So we're talking about these people being around for the next 20 to 40 years to interpret legislation in laws.

  • Um, should Americans be worried?

  • Absolutely.

  • I mean, I think we're gonna be dealing with Trump's legacy in the courts for quite some time to come.

  • And if you look also at the judges that he appointed, a lot of them are, um, have been nurtured by thes sort of right wing legal organizations like the Federalist Society, which plays an enormous role in finding and nurturing legal candidates and promoting them for for, ah, different appointments and sort of sustaining their careers.

  • And then, um, you know, you also have a lot of Trump appointees who have worked for right wing legal or Christian nationalist legal organizations, including the Alliance Defending Freedom, which is known as a sort of legal juggernaut off the Christian right.

  • And again, they don't just take right wing positions on the so called culture wars like, you know, same sex marriage and abortion.

  • They're advocating, for sort of, um, policies that I think it's really under appreciated the extent to which the Republican Party and, uh, has allied itself with the sort of far right libertarian economic wing of the Republican Party on.

  • And you know, a lot of the big ticket funders of the movement.

  • Many of the people sort of pouring money into the These organizations are as committed to sort of, almost like a free market fundamentalism as they are, too right wing positions in the so called culture wars.

  • Yeah, it's just it's amazing to when you think all of this comes together and the notion of separation of church and state just yeah, goes up in smoke.

  • Katherine Stewart, author of the Power Worshippers Inside The Dangerous Rise of Religious Nationalism.

  • Catherine, we appreciate your time and your insights tonight.

  • Thank you.

  • Thank you for having me.

Tuesday marks Donald Trump's last full day as president of the United States.

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    林宜悉 posted on 2021/01/19
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