Trump Moves Against North Korea, Press Is Confused

Today President Trump issued an executive order that imposes financial sanctions on those who do business with North Korea:

President Trump announced new U.S. financial sanctions Thursday that target North Korea and foreign companies or individuals that do business with the rogue nation….

The new penalties seek to leverage the dominance of the U.S. financial system by forcing nations to choose whether to do business with the United States or the comparatively tiny economy of North Korea.

The main target, I take it, is China, and there are preliminary indications that the Chinese may be responding:

Significantly, Trump also said that Chinese President Xi Jinping had ordered Chinese banks to cease conducting business with North Korean entities. Trump praised Xi, calling the move “very bold” and “somewhat unexpected.”

The administration was careful not to over-sell the move, saying that it won’t change the Kim regime’s goals and attitudes. Rather, the objective is to slow down North Korea’s nuclear and ballistic missile programs by starving them, partially, of funding.

One might think that liberal reporters, who pretend to think that President Trump might launch missiles at North Korea at any moment, would applaud Trump’s latest move, but–just kidding. No one expected that.

Today U.N. Ambassador Nikki Haley gave a press briefing in New York. Reporters were aware that on October 15, President Trump will report to Congress on Iran’s compliance, or lack thereof, with Obama’s nuclear deal. Trump will either certify, or decline to certify, Iran’s compliance. He will also report on Iran’s nuclear program, its ballistic missiles work, and its support for terrorism. Here are the relevant questions and Ambassador Haley’s answers. Note how the reporters misapprehend the relationship between the current North Korea crisis and the Iran deal:

Q The German Foreign Minister said today that any disavowal of the Iran Deal would reduce the likelihood of getting any similar disarmament deal with North Korea. Do you share those concerns that any actions on the Iran Deal might reduce the possibility of getting a deal with North Korea?
And separately, as a point of clarification, do you support a full oil embargo on North Korea?

AMBASSADOR HALEY: So I think let’s go back to Iran in the first place. What I will tell you is, a lot of countries are going to have their opinions on whether the U.S. should stay in the deal or not. But those countries don’t have Iranians saying “death to America.” They’re not saying “death to Germany.” They’re not saying all of those things. What we can see is terrorist attacks happening everywhere with ties to Iran. And that’s something we need to be careful about.

And so it has never moved the U.S. to care about what other countries say. What does move the President is, are we doing everything in the best interest — security interest for the American people. And that’s what you’re seeing is playing out.

In terms of comparing Iran to North Korea, that’s exactly what we’re doing, is we had so many bad deals with North Korea and everybody looked the other way. And every time they broke that deal, they looked the other way. Well, where are we now? They now have a hydrogen bomb. They now have ICBM. So if we don’t do something and we make the same mistakes we made with North Korea, we will be dealing with Iran that has nuclear weapons and ballistic missile technology. And so that’s the concern and that’s what we’re trying to do with that.

The point seems blindingly obvious–let’s not repeat the mistakes we made with North Korea in the case of Iran–but reporters (and Democrats generally) don’t seem to get it. More:

Q Ambassador, how can the U.S. maintain its diplomatic credibility and get a nuclear deal with North Korea when it is willing to consider blowing up, damaging, putting in peril the existing diplomatic deal with Iran on its program? Doesn’t this undermine U.S. credibility?

To a liberal, “credibility” means reliably and consistently being a sucker. Ambassador Haley knocks this one out of the park:

AMBASSADOR HALEY: It does not undermine U.S. credibility. What it shows is that the United States is going to always watch out for its people, and that just because there was some agreement that was agreed to — the smartest thing any country can do is go back and look at it and say, “is it working”; not have too much pride to say, “Oh, I signed it, I have to continue to be a cheerleader.” Is it working?

And I’ll ask you, do you think that deal is working when Iran continues to test ballistic missiles? Do you think that deal is working when they are supporting terrorists everywhere, from Lebanon to Yemen to Syria to Iraq? Do you think it’s still working? And do you think it’s still working when they’re smuggling arms and now working with North Korea? Is that in the best interest of the United States?

I would question that. Because what you’re looking at is a country that says “death to America,” working with other countries that may also want the same thing. And the President has the responsibility to make sure nothing happens to Americans. And I think that’s what he’s trying to do.

When the Democratic Party’s representatives get chewed up like that, it is a good day for the Trump administration, and for America.

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