Guess we haven’t gone full banana republic just yet. Or else the banana is still green. But you know how little time it takes for a banana to rot.

Army Secretary Ryan McCarthy said on Friday at a National Press Club event that Lt. Col. Alexander Vindman would not be investigated for his role in Donald Trump’s impeachment trial. Of course, the fact that he had to even say that shows just how far down the rabbit hole we’ve already gone.

Vindman, who was kicked off the National Security Council a week ago in what was almost certainly an act of Trumpian retribution, will instead receive a “bridging assignment.”

“Then he will be heading to a senior service college this summer,” said McCarthy. “There’s no investigation into him.”

Whew! So we’re not Russia. Yet.

McCarthy may be tempting fate, of course, because it really sounds like Trump wants an investigation into the war hero and Purple Heart recipient for putting his country ahead of his boss’ whims and telling the truth about Trump’s black, bloodless knot of a heart.

On Tuesday, Trump said of a possible investigation of Vindman, “That’s going to be up to the military. We’ll have to see, but if you look at what happened, they’re going to certainly, I would imagine, take a look at that.”

Erp, no. Sorry, Chachi.

Trump also said Vindman had said “very inaccurate things” about Trump’s July 25 call with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky — this coming from the guy who has said nothing but inaccurate things about that call.

“It turned out that what he reported was very different. And also when you look at the person he reports to, said horrible things, avoided the chain of command, leaked, did a lot of bad things. And so we sent him on his way to a much different location, and the military can handle him any way they want.”

This is encouraging, though it’s also a little horrifying that there was ever any question. Trump has been jingling and jangling his bone spurs with uncommon alacrity the past several days, and so far it’s simply gotten his friend a shot at a lighter sentence. It hasn’t put anyone in the gulag just yet.

Damn good thing Bill Barr isn’t head of the Army, though.

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