would seem. Candidate Trump held out his hand to
Vladimir Putin. He rejected further U.S.
intervention in Syria other than to smash ISIS.
spoke of getting out and staying out of the
misbegotten Middle East wars into which
Presidents Bush II and Obama had plunged the
President Trump’s seeming renunciation of an
anti-interventionist foreign policy is the great
surprise of the first 100 days, and the most
ominous. For any new war could vitiate the Trump
mandate and consume his presidency.
no longer calls NATO "obsolete," but moves U.S.
troops toward Russia in the Baltic and eastern
Balkans. Rex Tillerson, holder of Russia’s Order
of Friendship, now warns that the U.S. will not
lift sanctions on Russia until she gets out of
Tillerson is not bluffing, that would rule out
any rapprochement in the Trump presidency. For
neither Putin, nor any successor, could
surrender Crimea and survive.
happened to the Trump of 2016?
did Kiev’s claim to Crimea become more crucial
to us than a cooperative relationship with a
nuclear-armed Russia? In 1991, Bush I and
Secretary of State James Baker thought the very
idea of Ukraine’s independence was the product
of a "suicidal nationalism."
do we think this demonization of Putin and
ostracism of Russia is going to lead?
Xi Jinping to help with our Pyongyang problem,
Trump has dropped all talk of befriending
Taiwan, backed off Tillerson’s warning to
Beijing to vacate its fortified reefs in the
South China Sea, and held out promises of major
concessions to Beijing in future trade deals.
(Xi Jinping) and I believe he likes me a lot,"
Trump said this week. One recalls FDR
admonishing Churchill, "I think I can personally
handle Stalin better than … your Foreign Office
… Stalin hates the guts of all your people. He
thinks he likes me better."
not live to see what a fool Stalin had made of
the achievements celebrated in Trump’s first 100
days are the 59 cruise missiles launched at the
Syrian airfield from which the gas attack on
civilians allegedly came, and the dropping of
the 22,000-pound MOAB bomb in Afghanistan.
what did these bombings accomplish?
Party seems again ascendant. John McCain and
Lindsey Graham are happy campers. In
Afghanistan, the U.S. commander is calling for
thousands more U.S. troops to assist the 8,500
still there, to stabilize an Afghan regime and
army that is steadily losing ground to the
back on the front burner. While Tillerson
concedes that Tehran is in compliance with the
2015 nuclear deal, Trump says it is violating
"the spirit of the agreement."
Says Tillerson, Iran is "destabilizing" the
region, and threatening U.S. interests in Syria,
Yemen, Iraq and Lebanon.
Iran is an ally of Syria and was invited in to
help the U.N.-recognized government put down an
insurrection that contains elements of al-Qaida
and ISIS. It is we, the Turks, Saudis and Gulf
Arabs who have been backing the rebels seeking
to overthrow the regime.
Yemen, Houthi rebels overthrew and expelled a
Saudi satrap. The bombing, blockading and
intervention with troops is being done by Saudi
and Sunni Arabs, assisted by the U.S. Navy and
we and the Saudis who are talking of closing the
Yemeni port of Hodeida, which could bring on
not Iran, but the U.S. that invaded Iraq,
overthrew the Baghdad regime and occupied the
country. It was not Iran that overthrew Col.
Gadhafi and created the current disaster in
the USS Mahan fired a flare to warn off an
Iranian patrol boat, 1,000 meters away.
Supposedly, this was a provocation. But Iranian
foreign minister Javad Zarif had a point when he
"Breaking: Our Navy operates in – yes, correct –
the Persian Gulf, not the Gulf of Mexico.
Question is what US Navy doing 7,500 miles from
behind the seeming conversion of Trump to hawk?
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generals, Bibi Netanyahu and the neocons,
Congressional hawks with Cold War mindsets, the
Saudi royal family and the Gulf Arabs – they are
winning the battle for the president’s mind.
their agenda for America?
to recognize that our true enemy in the Mideast
is not al-Qaida or ISIS, but Shiite Iran and
Hezbollah, Assad’s Syria and his patron, Putin.
And until Hezbollah is eviscerated, Assad is
gone, and Iran is smashed the way we did
Afghanistan, Iraq, and Yemen, the flowering of
Middle East democracy that we all seek cannot
before President Trump proceeds along the path
laid out for him by his generals, brave and
patriotic men that they are, he should discover
if any of them opposed any of the idiotic wars
of the last 15 years, beginning with that
greatest of strategic blunders – George Bush’s
invasion of Iraq.
Patrick J. Buchanan
is the author of a new book, out in May,
"Nixon's White House Wars: The Battles That Made
and Broke a President and Divided America
Forever." To find out more about Patrick
Buchanan and read features by other Creators
writers and cartoonists, visit the Creators
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