OUR present national obsession with Brexit is obscuring some home truths to be gleaned from the other side of the Atlantic.

There, Donald Trump is proving to be a master of fear mongering by television, his mid-term rallies sounding, on the radio at any rate, more and more like their Nuremberg counterparts from the 1930s.

Having demonised the caravan of Hondurans fleeing their country, and now still a thousand miles from the US border, his remark to the effect that the throwing of rocks and stones by displaced people has equivalence with shooting, cynically prepares the way for the possibility of US troops mustered at the Mexican border opening fire on unarmed refugees.

His frankly disgraceful paean to the supposed beauty and utility of mechanical barriers as a means of protecting his seemingly captive TV audience, recalls, particularly at this time of year, the sardonic rendering by the Tommies of a hundred years ago of the song “Hanging on the old barbed wire”.

How people of goodwill everywhere must be hoping and praying for some sign of a comeback by the Democrats, the last chance for two years to apply the brakes to the Trump juggernaut.

Steve Williams