Trump Foreign Policy

Report: North Korea is working on new missiles

Featured image According to the Washington Post, U.S. spy agencies are seeing signs that North Korea is constructing new missiles at a factory that produced the country’s first intercontinental ballistic missiles capable of reaching the United States. The Post cites “officials familiar with the intelligence.” It also provides a commercial satellite image, taken on July 7, showing the factory in question. The photo includes a vehicle the Post says is similar to »

Iran On the Ropes?

Featured image I confess that even after I boarded the Trump train–basically, when no alternative was left–I didn’t imagine that Trump would prove to be a foreign policy genius. But isn’t that what we are seeing? Improving our trade deals, finally doing something about North Korea, standing up to Putin’s Russia, pushing back against Chinese theft of intellectual property, exposing anti-Semitism and fecklessness in the U.N., getting more contributions from NATO allies–it’s »

Udall wonders why

Featured image I’ve been looking for a highlight reel of Secretary Pompeo’s appearance before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee yesterday. I thought it was a highlight reel from beginning to end when Pompeo was speaking. C-SSPAN has posted video of the entire three-hour hearing here. The clip below features Pompeo responding to New Mexico Senator Tom Udall’s question regarding interest in President Trump’s tax return following the Trump-Putin Helskinki meeting. You know, »

Trump Makes a Deal

Featured image I have argued repeatedly that talk of a trade war is vastly overblown. It seems obvious that President Trump has properly staked out positions in defense of American interests with several trading partners, including the European Union, Mexico and China. His purpose is not to ignite a trade war, if such can be avoided, but rather to negotiate fairer and more favorable terms. That view was vindicated today, as to »

Message to the mullahs

Featured image President Trump’s tweet to President Rouhani carried a message to the mullahs. New York Times reporter Austin Ramzy drily observes: “Mr. Trump’s message was apparently in response to a speech on Sunday by Mr. Rouhani, who warned the United States that any conflict with Iran would be the ‘mother of all wars.’” Well, yeah. To Iranian President Rouhani: NEVER, EVER THREATEN THE UNITED STATES AGAIN OR YOU WILL SUFFER CONSEQUENCES »

Pompeo tells the truth about Iran

Featured image Secretary of State Mike Pompeo delivered remarks last night in a speech titled “Supporting Iranian Voices” at the Reagan Library in Simi Valley, California. I have posted the video below (about 25 minutes). The State Department has posted the text of the speech along with its own video of Pompeo’s remarks here. The Los Angeles Times covered the speech here. The place suggests the weight placed on the speech. President »

Shocker: North Korea not denuclearizing, not cooperating

Featured image I doubt that any sensible, objective observer expected North Korea to denuclearize in response to President Trump’s meeting with Kim Jong Un. However, there was some reason to hope for a modicum of cooperation between the U.S. and North Korea on other issues, though such cooperation was hardly assured. As things stand now, there seems to be precious little cooperation and, of course, no movement towards denuclearization. The Washington Post »

Trump’s incredible take on Putin’s “incredible offer”

Featured image I’ve commented on two appalling aspects of Trump’s Helsinki news conference — his placing equal blame on the United States for the problematic state of Russian–American relations and his refusal to side with his own intelligence appointees on the matter of Russia’s cyberespionage. Andy McCarthy finds it even more mind-boggling that Trump touted Putin’s “incredible offer” to have Robert Mueller’s team come to Russia to work with Russian investigators regarding »

What Putin Was Up To (2)

Featured image One sentence of Paul’s post from this morning stands out for further reflection: “an experienced intelligence hand articulated it to me: If we know the Russians hacked the Democrats, it’s probably because the Russians want us to know.” This would not be the first time that a seeming anomaly ought to stop us in our tracks, but unfortunately most of the media and analysts have a child’s grasp of the »

Putin on the Fritz

Featured image Okay, so now we have Trump’s word for it that he got tripped up by an insufficient grasp of the use of double-negatives, but at least he didn’t say, “I did not have inappropriate syntax with that man, Mr. Putin.” It also puts me in the frame of mind of an old story I think attributed to the largely forgotten philosopher Morris Cohen, who in a lecture one day remarked »

Are you sure Frank done it this way?

Featured image First Vladimir Putin and then President Trump gave statements following their meeting in Helsinki yesterday. I have posted the video below (about 47 minutes); the White House has posted a transcript of the entire event. Angelo Codevilla makes a contrarian case for Trump’s performance in a column for American Greatness, but I thought it was a low point in the Trump presidency. In the questions and answers, President Trump name-checked »

For Trump, the Political Is Personal

Featured image As so often happens, President Trump’s critics are so crazy that one feels compelled to take his side. Thus, former Communist and CIA Director John Brennan tweeted earlier today: This is simply insane. Other Democrats, not going as far as Brennan, say that Trump “gave away the store,” or made inappropriate concessions to President Putin. But there is no evidence that Trump gave anything away in his meeting with Putin, »

Donald Trump and Theresa May Meet the Press

Featured image Earlier today, President Trump and Prime Minister May held a joint press conference at Chequers. This transcript comes from the British Embassy, and appears to be sanitized in that it doesn’t include Trump’s exchange with CNN’s Jim Acosta: After criticizing CNN, Pres. Trump declines to take a question from a CNN reporter at joint presser with Theresa May. "CNN is fake news. I don't take questions from CNN." Pres. Trump »

The left’s incoherence on Trump-Putin exposed

Featured image I agree with John’s analysis of the approach President Trump is taking at the NATO summit. In this post, I want to highlight the inconsistency, noted by John, between the left’s criticism of Trump’s approach and its claim that he is soft on, and maybe an instrument of, Putin. Trump has made two main points in Europe. First, key NATO members aren’t doing enough in the area of defense. Second, »

From the Islamic Republic

Featured image Herewith a round-up of recent news items from President Obama’s friends in the Islamic Republic of Iran. If the authorities of the regime weren’t terror-loving murderers giving their all for Allah, they might be funny: • AFP and Times of Israel staff, “Iranian general blames water woes on Israeli ‘cloud theft.’” Excerpt: An Iranian general on Monday accused Israel of manipulating weather to prevent rain over the Islamic Republic, alleging »

Bull: 1, China Shop: 0

Featured image Get out the fainting couches! President Trump is in Europe, and once again he is saying the unsayable. The occasion is the NATO summit that began today in Brussels. Trump fired an opening salvo that included two themes, as reported by Bloomberg. The first is that Germany, in particular, undermines the alliance’s defenses against Russia by being too dependent on Russian natural gas: “It’s very sad when Germany makes a »

A Trump-Putin deal on Syria?

Featured image According to David Ignatius of the Washington Post: “The catastrophic war in Syria is nearing what could be a diplomatic endgame, as the United States, Russia and Israel shape a deal that would preserve power for Syrian President Bashar al -Assad in exchange for Russian pledges to restrain Iranian influence.” Is this true? The words “is” and “could be” leave me unclear whether Ignatius is speculating or reporting what he »