President Donald Trump held his first cabinet meeting of 2019 on Tuesday, amid an ongoing government shutdown.
Of most pressing concern to many observers (ahem) was the poster-sized mockup of a meme sitting in front of Trump.
The president first tweeted the meme ahead of sanctions against Iran — lifted under the nuclear deal Trump left — snapping back into place.
The meme is based on a lead group of characters — the Stark family — in Game of Thrones, whose foreboding motto is "Winter is coming."
Trump only briefly mentioned Iran, saying that the sanctions against it have worked and "turned it into a different country," according to the White House press pool. “Iran is in trouble," the president said.
But Trump focused the meeting on his demand for a border wall — the main reason for the government shutdown — and claimed again that "walls work."
And, again, people were quick to jump on the historical inaccuracy of that claim.
Those who are caught up on the most recent season of Game of Thrones also may spot why it's a not great claim to make in front of a GoT-themed meme.
(Feel free to skip the next bit if that doesn't describe you!)
Namely that, in the show, the Wall — which, though fictional, is roughly 20 times higher than the one Trump wants and is made of ice — gets A HOLE BLOWN IN IT during the end of the last season.
Letting an army of what are effectively very evil zombies march into lands controlled by the living.
(Okay, keep reading.)
Irony aside, there are still a number of questions up in the air about the provenance of the poster.
* Who ordered that it be printed?
* Why was it delivered and so prominent during this meeting, which, based on pool reports published to date, wasn't really about Iran?
* Did it require government resources to be used during a shutdown?
* Who gets to keep it after the meeting?
* Has the president seen Game of Thrones? Does Trump know that the meme cuts against his argument that "walls work"?
On Thursday, the answer to those questions was no clearer. But someone on the White House social media team decided to keep the dragon flying and posted a ~different~ Game of Thrones meme to Instagram. And this time, it took square aim at Trump's demands with the caption "The Wall Is Coming."
Given that HBO tweeted this back when the president first tweeted the original meme, will the channel's maesters* send a strongly worded raven** to the Red Keep***? Only time will tell!
** letter of cease and desist
*** White House