Trump Foreign Policy

The Russians are “dismayed” by Trump

Featured image European leaders (at least those from “old Europe”) have declined to take the Trump administration’s anti-Russia, pro-NATO statements seriously, but this is not the case in Russia. The Washington Post reports that “in Moscow, euphoria over Trump evaporates” as “Russian politicians, journalists and others express dismay” that “the White House puts daylight between itself and the Kremlin.” (These are the headlines of the Post’s story in the print edition) The »

Anti-Trump Europeans decline to be reassured by Mike Pence

Featured image As I discussed yesterday, President Trump sent his “A Team” to Europe to demonstrate America’s commitment to NATO. Homeland Security Secretary John Kelly, Defense Secretary Jim Mattis, and Vice President Mike Pence all traveled to a major conference in Munich for that purpose. Kelly, Mattis, and Pence said the right things. Pence, who told the conference he was sending a message of reassurance directly from President Trump, stated that the »

German defense minister reinforces Trump’s reservations on NATO

Featured image President Trump sent his “A Team” to Europe to demonstrate America’s commitment to NATO. Homeland Security Secretary John Kelly, Defense Secretary Jim Mattis, and Vice President Mike Pence all traveled to a major conference in Munich for that purpose. However, key European officials, along with honorary European John McCain, used the occasion to vent over Trump. Apparently, the Europeans would rather grandstand to their domestic audiences and demonstrate their moral »

Highlights of the Trump-Netanyahu Press Conference

Featured image Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is in Washington meeting with President Trump. Prior to their meeting, they conducted the usual dual press conference. No major news was made, but several interesting points emerged: 1) I’ve rarely seen Netanyahu look so happy. He must be almost as relieved to see the end of the Obama administration as we are. 2) President Trump indicated that he was open to alternatives to the two-state »

NATO Responds to Trump

Featured image The foreign policy establishment got the vapors when Donald Trump suggested, during the campaign, that NATO allies should be doing more to pay for their own defense. But it appears that the right people got the message: The NATO chief urged allies on Tuesday to step up their defense spending, a day ahead of the first meeting between new U.S. Defense Secretary Jim Mattis and his 27 NATO counterparts in »

Trump is off to a good start with Japan

Featured image What is the most important trait in a U.S. president? Regard for the Constitution, I believe. What’s second? Probably the ability to distinguish between friendly countries and leaders and unfriendly countries and leaders, and to conduct foreign policy accordingly. The distinguishing part isn’t always easy. Every president is likely to make a mistake or two. The second part — conducting foreign policy accordingly — shouldn’t be too difficult. President Reagan »

Two anti-Trump talking points falter in one day

Featured image A month ago, liberals were claiming that Donald Trump would be a tool of the Russians. After all, they hadn’t brought about his election, via WikiLeaks, for nothing. To be fair, it wasn’t just liberals who expressed concern about what Trump’s Russia policy might be. As a candidate, Trump took a softer line on Vladimir Putin than many, including me, liked. But it was the left that claimed something sinister »

“How is it playing out in Australia?” [with comment by Paul]

Featured image Writing from down under, Steve Kates responds to the question “How is it playing out in Australia?” Not surprisingly, Professor Kates provides a perspective that is nowhere to be found in the news up here: “For [Australian Prime Minister] Malcolm [Turnbull] apparently to have tried to push Trump, by telling him that as a fellow businessman that a deal is a deal, must rank as politically incompetent as anything I »

Did Trump “badger” Australia’s PM?

Featured image “Trump badgers leader of Australia.” That’s the headline on the front page of today’s Washington Post. Barack Obama badgered the leader of Israel for eight years. I don’t think the Post ever so informed its readers. Why not? Because the Post loves Obama and hates Netanyahu and Trump. It’s as simple as that. But did Trump really badger Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull during their phone conversation yesterday? The Post’s »

Iran put “on notice”

Featured image At today’s White House press briefing National Security Advisor Michael Flynn read a statement that took note of recent Iranian provocations. Flynn specifically cited two sets of Iranian actions that he suggested the Iranians had been allowed to conduct with relative impunity in recent years: Iranian ballistic missile launches and Iran’s proxies in Yemen attacking naval vessels in the Red Sea. Flynn put Iran “on notice,” without further explanation. Politico »

Sens. McCain and Graham will support Tillerson [UPDATE: Rubio, Too]

Featured image Senators John McCain and Lindsey Graham have announced that they will vote to confirm Rex Tillerson as Secretary of State. With these two votes, Tilleson’s confirmation becomes a near certainty. Among Republicans, Senator Marco Rubio appears to be the only holdout. The Florida man tore into Tillerson at the confirmation hearing but has not said how he will vote. Even if Rubio votes “no,” Tillerson should receive 51 votes. With »

Podcast: Repeal, Replace, Repeat Until Done

Featured image The Power Line Show podcast has been on extended hiatus because the four of us suffer from a massive collective action problem, being scattered in time zones and with crazy conflicting schedules. But I’ve been trying to keep my chops up to speed, yesterday sitting in for Rob Long on the weekly Ricochet podcast along with Peter Robinson and James Lileks. The show featured as its special guest Avik Roy, »

British PM repudiates Kerry’s attack on Israel

Featured image British Prime Minister Theresa May has criticized John Kerry’s oration on the state of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Kerry called Benjamin Netanyahu’s coalition “the most right-wing in Israeli history, with an agenda driven by its most extreme elements.” And, of course, he condemned Israeli settlement building as a threat to the “two-state solution.” May responded that her government “[does] not believe that it is appropriate to attack the composition of the »

Obama’s parting shot at Israel [UPDATED]

Featured image Donald Trump’s success in blocking a U.N. resolution condemning Israel was short-lived. Yesterday, as we discussed here, Egypt pulled the resolution in response to Trump’s expression of disapproval. Today, however, four Security Council members revived it for consideration. They were New Zealand, Malaysia, Senegal, and Venezuela, a failed socialist state. President Obama opted not to block resolution. The U.S. abstained. Therefore, it passed. Scott has more about this here. Obama’s »

Israel Denounces “Shameful” Obama Administration

Featured image Paul wrote yesterday about how President-elect Trump went to bat for Israel, opposing an anti-settlement United Nations resolution that the Obama administration had decided not to veto. Today Israel’s government shed more light on what happened, and made clear its feelings about the Obama administration: An Israeli official on Friday accused President Barack Obama of colluding with the Palestinians in a “shameful move against Israel at the U.N.” after learning »

Trump goes to bat for Israel, thwarts Obama [With Comment by John]

Featured image Today, the U.N. Security Council was poised to pass a resolution condemning the construction of Israeli settlements. Proposed by Egypt, the resolution called settlements “a flagrant violation under international law” and “a major obstacle to the achievement of the two-State solution.” It called on Israel to “immediately and completely cease all settlement activities” in the occupied West Bank. The U.S. has a veto in the Security Council. It could have »

MSM mainstay thinks Trump may have a clue

Featured image David Ignatius strikes me as a fount of the conventional wisdom. If so, the conventional wisdom about Donald Trump may be changing. On December 6, Ignatius proclaimed that Trump had “flunked his first foreign policy test” by following up his phone conversation with Taiwan’s president with an anti-China “twitter storm.” This certainly was the conventional wisdom. But earlier this week, Ignatius found value in Trump’s “early foray with China.” He »