Trump Foreign Policy

Another errant anti-Trump hit piece from the Washington Post

Featured image Fresh off of its triumph in the Alabama Senate race, the Washington Post returns to its primary mission — taking down the President of the United States. It does so in a piece called (in the paper edition) “How Trump’s pursuit of Putin has left the U.S. vulnerable to the Russia threat.” The hit piece, by Greg Miller, Greg Jaffe, and Phillip Rucker, takes up five pages in the front »

The “Peace Process” Ended Long Ago

Featured image In the wake of President Trump’s common-sense decision to acknowledge the obvious fact that Jerusalem is Israel’s capital–and, by implication, that Israel is a normal country–there is much wailing over the fate of the “peace process.” CNN: “For Palestinians, Trump’s Jerusalem move is the end of the peace process.” Al Jazeera: “Israel-Palestine peace process rendered irrelevant.” CBS News: “What does Trump’s Jerusalem move mean for the peace process?” The Guardian: »

Trump’s Jerusalem Speech Is a Step Forward

Featured image As expected, President Trump announced today that the United States is recognizing Jerusalem as the capital of Israel. He also said that he is directing the State Department to begin preparations to move the U.S. Embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem. Trump described his order as “the beginning of a new approach to conflict between Israel and the Palestinians.” The old approach, he said, hasn’t worked, and “[i]t would be »

Trump’s Views on Jerusalem Horrify the Press

Featured image Tomorrow, President Trump will speak publicly about the status of Jerusalem. During the campaign, he promised to move the U.S. Embassy from Tel Aviv to Israel’s capital, which is required by law unless the president issues a waiver on national security grounds–as every president has done since the law was passed. Apparently “U.S. officials” are telling reporters that Trump will say Jerusalem is Israel’s capital, a much more modest step »

Jared Kushner’s shopworn “wisdom” about the Middle East

Featured image John Roche, who served as an aide to President Johnson, once described Johnson’s reaction when a Democratic Senator on the Foreign Relations Committee (Roche withheld the name, and I won’t speculate) broke with LBJ on the war in Vietnam. According to Roche, Johnson said something close to this: It’s my own fault. Some years ago, the good people of ______, in their wisdom, elected the village idiot to the Senate. »

Tom Cotton to CIA?

Featured image John noted last night that, according to strong rumors, Sen. Tom Cotton will resign from the Senate and succeed Mike Pompeo as head of the CIA. Pompeo, according to the same rumors, will become Secretary of State. I’d rather see Cotton in the Senate than at the hornets nest across the river in Langley (and, frankly, the hornets nest of the Trump administration). However, I think I understand why he »

Trump picks top Clinton aide for key ambassador slot. Why?

Featured image President Trump has nominated Joseph McManus to be the U.S. ambassador to Colombia. McManus is an experienced diplomat, having spent 30 years in the foreign service. I don’t doubt that he’s a capable man. However, critics point out that McManus was one of Hillary Clinton’s top aides at the State Department and was deeply involved in the State Department’s initial response to the Benghazi attack. In addition, he became entangled »

The battle for the lands of the caliphate

Featured image Cliff May, president of the Foundation for Defense of Democracy, argues that territories taken from the Islamic State (ISIS) must not be surrendered to the Islamic Republic (Iran). Such a surrender is almost certain unless President Trump acts to prevent it. The territory in question is in Syria’s Deir Ezzor province, which contains large oil and gas reserves and is adjacent to the Iraqi border. May warns that if Iran’s »

The Gathering Storm in the Western Pacific

Featured image The South China Morning Post, one of the favorite go-to sources for my old professor of grand strategy Harold Rood, had an interesting article about China and North Korea a couple days ago—and notice how even the Post headline editors aren’t buying the official story: Main link between China and North Korea to be cut when Friendship Bridge closes ‘for repairs’ The closure of the Sino-North Korean Friendship Bridge in »

AP Asks: Who Can Stop Trump From Dropping the Bomb?

Featured image It must be tough when you have to come up with a new way of smearing President Trump every day, but the editors and reporters of the Associated Press are up to the task. Today’s headline: “Could anyone stop Trump from launching nukes? The answer: No.” Because, of course, Trump is such a lunatic that he might unleash nuclear weapons at any moment, for no particular reason. Here’s a question »

Iran not feeling the love

Featured image CBS News correspondent Elizabeth Palmer scored an interview with Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif in Tehran to discuss President Trump’s decertification of the Iran deal this past Friday. CBS News reports on the interview here; the transcript is posted here. David Rutz has posted the video excerpt of the interview at the bottom of this post along with his story at the Washington Free Beacon. Palmer also talked about »

Trump’s great call on UNESCO

Featured image I don’t think we have commented on President Trump’s decision to withdraw the United States from the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) in protest of that outfit’s anti-Israel bias. My comment is: Great call. President Trump is following in the footsteps of President Reagan. He took the U.S. out of UNESCO in 1984 because it was too susceptible to Soviet influence and overly critical of Israel. There »

Initial thoughts on Trump’s Iran speech: Do all roads lead to a pull-out? [UPDATED]

Featured image President Trump has just given an address that outlines how he plans to proceed against Iran. The two main points are: (1) he will impose new sanctions to punish Iran’s Revolutionary Guard and (2) he will not certify the Iran nuclear deal. The refusal to certify means that Congress has 60 days to act. Trump is asking it to adopt legislation, apparently already formulated, that would remedy the flaws in »

Cotton to the defense

Featured image Susan Glasser recorded a podcast under the moniker of Global Politico yesterday with Arkansas Senator Tom Cotton. Glasser focused the interview on national security and foreign policy issues. Senator Cotton expresses himself trenchantly in complete sentences and full paragraphs. He is a member of the Senate Intelligence Committee. He speaks frequently with President Trump. He knows what he is talking about. The interview is lucid and informative. I have embedded »

Is war the only alternative to the Iran deal?

Featured image Michael Oren is Israel’s deputy minister for diplomacy and a former Israeli ambassador to the United States. Writing in the New York Times, Oren disputes the argument that “the only alternative to the Iran nuclear deal is war.” Noting that the same argument was made before the Iran deal was reached in 2015, he responds that, now as then, the alternative to the deal isn’t war, but a better deal. »

Decertificaton of the Iran deal without withdrawal: What does it get us?

Featured image I wrote here about the Trump administration’s likely decision to decertify the Iran nuclear deal. In the same post, I quoted reports that Trump was unlikely, decertification notwithstanding, to push Congress to impose on Iran the sanctions we lifted as part of the nuclear deal. It now seems clear that, indeed, Trump will not lobby for reimposing the sanctions. If anything, he is lobbying not to have sanctions renewed. According »

Trump likely to decertify Iran deal; then what?

Featured image All indications are that President Trump next week will decline to certify Iran as in compliance with the nuclear agreement negotiated by former President Obama. So report Eliana Johnson of Politico and Adam Kredo of the Washington Free Beacon, among others. I don’t see how Trump, in good faith, can certify that Iran is complying. Last week the head of the IAEA revealed that his organization can’t verify that Iran »