In June 2017, the New York production of Shakespeare in the Park modified its costuming for its production of “Julius Caesar” so that the title character resembled the new U.S. president. After the actor playing a Trump-resembling Caesar pretended to succumb to the many wounds inflicted by the conspiracy of assassins, the character Brutus implored his co-conspirators to, “Stoop, Romans, stoop, and let us bathe our hands in Caesar’s blood up to the elbows and besmear our swords.” In doing so, Brutus forced the other conspirators to become indivisibly responsible for the coup. Nobody could turn on the other plotters if everyone had Caesar’s blood on their sword.
In an irony almost lost to history, the play-acting coup against the image of Trump had an analogue in reality. At that same moment in June 2017, Kevin Clinesmith forwarded two emails to his fellow conspirators who lied to the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court in order to spy on Trump campaign figure Carter Page.
One email reflected that Carter Page worked as a source for the CIA to gather information on the Russians. That email exposed the entire Carter Page FISA spying as completely unnecessary and therefore totally illegal…
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