Trump Not Afrraid to Buck Status Quo on Foreign Affairs
Advertise with us Click for Rates
Results 1 to 3 of 3
Like Tree2Likes
  • 2 Post By Stevejet

Thread: Trump Not Afrraid to Buck Status Quo on Foreign Affairs

  1. #1
    Senior Member NGF Addict!
    Join Date
    Sep 2012
    Location
    Southern Kalifornia
    Posts
    17,021

    Default Trump Not Afrraid to Buck Status Quo on Foreign Affairs

    OC Register/Carl Cannon - Staff Columnist

    If the old “man bites dog” journalism-school definition of news still applies, it was barely newsworthy when Donald Trump began gnawing on China’s leg upon becoming president-elect. This is not to compare China to a giant canine or to ignore the fact of life that China-United States is a bilateral rivalry that must managed skillfully.

    It’s just to say that Trump’s decision to speak on the telephone to the newly elected president of Taiwan shouldn’t have surprised any sentient American, let alone the ladies and gentlemen of the Fourth Estate.

    Ah, but it did. The phone call and subsequent Trump tweets induced widespread alarm in elite newsrooms and in the predictable precincts of social media: Take away that man’s Twitter account! What is he trying to do, start World War III?!

    It’s clear that Donald J. Trump engenders strong emotions and that these feelings haven’t abated since he was elected president. But you’d think his critics might have learned by now that throwing tantrums in response to anything he does or says can make the tantrum-thrower look ridiculous.

    The morning Trump tweeted that burning the American flag should be punishable by jail time, for instance, the anchors on CNN and MSNBC went apoplectic. Their outrage lasted about as long as it took Fox News to unearth a similar 2005 flag-burning ban authored by one Hillary Rodham Clinton – when she was in the Senate. Oops.

    The knee-jerk reaction to Trump’s Taiwan gambit was even odder. The gist was that because Trump had irritated the Chinese government and alarmed the State Department, we, too, should be worried. But that line of argument ignored the entirety of Trump’s campaign, and seven decades’ worth of lessons about relations between the White House and the State Department. Let’s start with the recently concluded presidential election. As a candidate, Trump repeatedly accused the Chinese of manipulating their currency, engaging in “massive theft” of intellectual property, unfairly taxing U.S. companies, not exerting enough control over North Korea, and nefariously enticing greedy American CEOs to relocate across the Pacific. He criticized Beijing’s leadership so much and so often for so many things that liberals famously made fun of how he pronounced the word “China.”

    Yet his critics were shocked, shocked, when he took a call from Taiwan’s democratically elected president. Yes, let’s dwell on that point for a second: Taiwan is a democracy, while China is the most populous dictatorship in the world.

    At the State Department headquarters in Foggy Bottom, they got the vapors, but isn’t this always how the foreign policy establishment reacts to presidents who want to, well, conduct international affairs the way they see fit?

    In 1947 and 1948, the State Department did everything in its power to undermine Harry Truman’s intention to recognize Israel. Although Truman considered Secretary of State George C. Marshall “the greatest living American,” he didn’t listen to Marshall or the experts on this topic. At a White House meeting, Marshall raised an objection to the presence of White House political adviser Clark Clifford. Truman’s answer was short, to the point, and relevant today. “Well, general,” the president of the United States replied, “he’s here because I asked him to be here.”

    In 1963, John F. Kennedy did listen to the State Department – and the CIA and the Joint Chiefs of Staff – on a foreign policy mess he inherited. Out of that deference came the Bay of Pigs fiasco and the popularity of a recently coined word, “groupthink.”

    In 1987, neither Secretary of State George Shultz nor the White House National Security Council wanted President Reagan to go to the Brandenburg Gate and call for Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev to tear down the Berlin Wall. They considered it too provocative and feared that Kremlin hardliners would use it to undermine Gorbachev. (The State Department speechwriters’ preferred language? “Someday this ugly wall will disappear.”) Fortunately, the old Hollywood leading man ignored that edit.

    Reagan’s theatrics did not end the Cold War, but they did set the stage for Reagan’s successful diplomacy with Gorbachev. Twenty years later, Shultz had no trouble admitting this to Time magazine. “People were afraid of the consequences of what Reagan would say,” he acknowledged. “But it turns out he was right.”

    In 1993, the State Department opposed President Clinton’s decision to try to jump-start the peace process in Northern Ireland by granting Sinn Fein leader Gerry Adams a visa to come to the United States. Clinton’s gambit succeeded spectacularly. From 1969 to late summer of 1994, 3,168 men, women and children were slain and another 30,000 maimed in the low-grade civil war simply called “The Troubles.”

    “It is not too much of a simplification to say that because Bill Clinton won the election in 1992, probably 150 people in Northern Ireland are walking around today who would have been dead by now,” Irish expatriate Niall O’Dowd told me on the eve of Clinton’s 1995 to visit Ulster. “You do the math: 3,000 people in 25 years. The cease-fire has lasted almost 15 months. Maybe it will last an eternity.”

    Come to think of it, when Richard Nixon went to China, he also had to circumvent his State Department, which he thought was leaking documents to sabotage his historic overture. It was this trip that led to the entire reset between the United States and China and the gradual abandonment of Taiwan in the first place. Is it time to reconsider?

    I don’t know about that, but I do know that Donald Trump sounded every day for a year-and-a-half like a presidential candidate uniquely unwedded to the status quo – especially when it came to China. And, by the way, those recent Trump tweets critical of Boeing and its CEO? This isn’t a subject that just popped into the president-elect’s mind recently.

    Back in February, Trump began accusing the Chinese of nefariously conspiring with Boeing to lure manufacturing plants out of South Carolina. He talked about this before the South Carolina primary, telling audiences there, “It won’t happen if I’m president, by the way.”

    Carl M. Cannon is executive editor and Washington Bureau chief of RealClearPolitics.

    [Only registered and activated users can see links. ]
    Last edited by Stevejet; 12-12-2016 at 02:58 PM.
    Popeye and 1shot1k like this.

  2. #2
    Senior Member NGF Addict!
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Location
    ........................................
    Posts
    4,399

    Default

    Trump is a businessman. I think it bodes well he's open to talk to World Leaders, without formal

    delays, and views it as a step in the business of being POTUS.

  3. #3
    Super Moderator NGF Addict!
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Goliad, Texas
    Posts
    13,944

    Default

    This is why Trump was elected. He's not going to do things like they've always been done just because that's the way they were always done. WE don't know how he's going to do them, but it won't be the same way. After the last 8 years this can hardly be for the worse.

    Alan
    But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security.-Thomas Jefferson

Links

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  

Thread Information

Users Browsing this Thread

There are currently 1 users browsing this thread. (0 members and 1 guests)