Category Archives: Trump

Trump Must Respond to Russia’s New Nuclear Missile | RealClearDefense

Political science research shows the best response to such a situation is tit-for-tat. By retaliating in kind, the United States can demonstrate that there are costs for noncompliance, and incentivize Russia to live up to its commitments. If Moscow still doesn’t come around, then at least Washington has the military capabilities to offset Russia’s advantage.

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This is exactly the “dual-track” approach that NATO followed with the deployment of Pershing missiles in Europe in the 1980s. Moscow knows it has more to lose from an intermediate nuclear arms race in Europe and this strategy frightened then Russian President Mikhail Gorbachev to sign up to the INF in the first place.

Trump Must Respond to Russia’s New Nuclear Missile | RealClearDefense

Donald Trump, Iran and the Fast Track to Nuclear War in the Middle East | World Report | US News

“Should the enemy make a mistake, our roaring missiles will rain down on them.” – IRGC Iran Air Force Commander, General Amir Ali Hajizadeh, Feb. 4, 2017

When all pertinent factors are taken into account, U.S. President Donald Trump could sometime undertake more-or-less selective military action against Iran. In response, the Islamic Republic – then having absolutely no meaningful option to launching at least certain forms of armed reprisal – would target American military forces in the region and/or carefully chosen Israeli targets. Whatever its precise configuration of selected targets, Tehran’s retaliatory blow would be expressly designed so as not to elicit an unacceptably massive (possibly even nuclear) counter-retaliation. With particular regard to Israel, moreover, this sort of retaliation would plausibly include, inter alia, a substantial reliance upon Iran’s own surrogate militia forces in Hezbollah.

Donald Trump, Iran and the Fast Track to Nuclear War in the Middle East | World Report | US News

It looks like the US and/or Israel are under substantial threat from Iran for a wrong move. For example, what would happen if the US sunk harassing Iranian vessels in the Persian Gulf? Could that set off an attack on Israel with a resulting Israeli nuclear response?

Iran official: Missiles need only 7 minutes to hit Tel Aviv | The Times of Israel

Mojtaba Zonour threatens attack on Israel if US launches military strike on Islamic Republic

Mojtaba Zonour, a member of Iran’s National Security and Foreign Policy Commission and a former Islamic Revolution Guards Corps official, boasted an Iranian missile could hit Tel Aviv in under seven minutes, the semi-official Fars News Agency reported.

Zonour said Tehran would strike the Israeli coastal city and “raze to the ground” a US military base in Bahrain “if the enemy makes a mistake.”

Iran official: Missiles need only 7 minutes to hit Tel Aviv | The Times of Israel

Trump and the End of the World Order | Newgeography.com

Yet, as Larry Summers has pointed out, there’s a reason for the rise of “populist authoritarianism.” What he calls “global elites” have been more focused on working with their foreign counterparts than helping their own middle- and working-class populations.

The old order is not working out all that well. The foreign policy establishments of both parties have ended up producing an America that is perhaps the weakest it has been since the end of the Vietnam debacle. George W. Bush launched a disastrous war in Iraq, which drained the country’s riches, bled its military and, in the end, left Iraq as a de facto Iranian vassal. For good measure, he pushed the expansion of trade in ways that accelerated the decline of many American industries, particularly in the Midwest, while helping boost China as our most formidable rival since the fall of the Soviet Union.

If, as Council on Foreign Relations President Richard N. Haass has suggested, Bush did too much, Obama’s response was to do too little. By his prevarications and refusal to acknowledge the world as it is, Obama has left behind a disastrous reality. Despite engaging in several armed conflicts and increasingly lethal drone attacks, U.S. influence in the Middle East has weakened while that of Iran and Russia has soared. To be in second place to Russia — with an economy about the size of that great economic superpower, Italy — in the Middle East owed little to hacking, but much to greater skill at outmaneuvering the Obama administration’s diplomacy.

Trump and the End of the World Order | Newgeography.com

Trump/Navarro saber-rattling has already shaken up China | San Diego Reader

Says the Guardian, “The Chinese government is a despicable, parasitic, brutal, brass-knuckled, crass, callous, amoral, ruthless and totally totalitarian imperialist power that reigns over the world’s leading cancer factory, its most prolific propaganda mill and the biggest police state and prison on the face of the earth. That is the view of Peter Navarro, the man chosen by Donald Trump to lead a new presidential office for U.S. trade and industrial policy.” This is likely to add to Beijing’s anxieties over Trump’s plans for U.S.-China relations.

Elazar Advisors, writing in Seeking Alpha, say bluntly, “A trade war is coming.” Elazar picks up some quotes from the Death by China video: “What’s wrong with taking China to task? They pirate our technology. They pirate our intellectual property rights. They counterfeit our goods and services and no administration has the backbone to stand up to them.…When you shop, always read the label. If the label says ‘Made in China,’ think about your job, think about your safety, think about China’s rapid military buildup.” Elazar says that if Trump and Navarro get their way, the stocks of companies with major China business, such as San Diego’s Qualcomm (more than half its revenues come from China), will get hit, at least initially.

Trump/Navarro saber-rattling has already shaken up China | San Diego Reader

Donald Trump and China on dangerous collision course, say experts | US news | The Guardian

“Report says ties between the two nuclear-armed countries could deteriorate into an economic or military confrontation”

The group’s report, which was handed to the White House on Sunday and will be published in Washington DC on Tuesday, says ties between the two nuclear-armed countries could rapidly deteriorate into an economic or even military confrontation if compromise on issues including trade, Taiwan and the South China Sea cannot be found.

It says China’s increasingly assertive actions in the region – which include placing sophisticated weapons systems on artificial islands – coupled with growing domestic nationalism risks setting the US and China on “a dangerous collision course”.

Donald Trump and China on dangerous collision course, say experts | US news | The Guardian

Iran and China respond to Trump with military drills

China and Iran, two countries that top President Trump’s enemies list, are pushing back against his tough talk this week with showy and provocative military drills.

Iran conducted military exercises and rolled out new weapons that its leaders said would help national defense, and China tested a new missile following Trump’s Twitter assault on Beijing’s expansion in the South China Sea.

Iran and China respond to Trump with military drills

US-China war would be a disaster for the world, says Communist party | World news | The Guardian

A military conflict between the US and China would spell disaster for the world, the Communist party’s official mouthpiece has warned, in its first pronouncement on ties between the world’s two largest economies since Donald Trump moved into the White House.

“Were the United States and China to wage war on one another, the whole world would divide itself,” the People’s Daily newspaper argued in a commentary, paraphrasing Henry Kissinger, the veteran US diplomat whose secret mission to China led to the historic rapprochement between Richard Nixon and Mao Zedong in 1972.

Fears of a potentially calamitous trade war, or even a military clash between the two nuclear powers, have been building since Trump’s shock election win last November.

US-China war would be a disaster for the world, says Communist party | World news | The Guardian

US would go into any war with China with ‘unparalleled violence’, warn experts | The Independent

Dr Peter Roberts, director of military sciences at the Royal United Services Institute, said: “America would take military losses. They would lose thousands and thousands [of personnel]. But China would be utterly defeated. If America goes to war, it wages war in its totality. They would go to this with unparalleled violence and energy.”

The US has an “overall competitive edge” partly due to technological superiority, Dr Roberts said, but also because the four branches of its military—Army, Navy, Marine Corps and Air Force—are trained to work closely together. “It’s demonstrated how it can use all those arms to deliver military victory,” he said.

US would go into any war with China with ‘unparalleled violence’, warn experts | The Independent

Bannon is right, a war could break out in the South China Sea. Perhaps it’s time for Trump to look it up on a map | The Independent

Here’s what he said last spring: “We’re going to war in the South China Sea in the next five to 10 years … There’s no doubt about that. They’re taking their sandbars and making basically stationary aircraft carriers and putting missiles on those. They come here to the United States in front of our face – and you understand how important face is – and say it’s an ancient territorial sea.” …

Will it work this time? It would be foolish to underestimate the red mist that descends on even the most moderate Chinese patriot when faced with any challenge to China’s territorial integrity. That is why the issues of Taiwan and Tibet have always been so sensitive (and before that Hong Kong). China believes that the South China Sea is its own paddling pool, and the artificial “islands” and reefs it has set up reinforce the point. Each of these obscure archipelagos has their own tale, but they usually involve territorial claims by, in various combinations and in varying degrees of viciousness, Vietnam, the Philippines, the two Koreas, Taiwan, Malaysia, Indonesia and Brunei. And, of course, China.

Bannon is right, a war could break out in the South China Sea. Perhaps it’s time for Trump to look it up on a map | The Independent

If Trump Hands Over Ukraine, He Will Make Russia Great Again – Jamestown

… According to Sergei Karaganov, a pundit and businessman with well-established long-term Kremlin connections, the world is in a prewar situation, but Washington and Moscow may jointly decrease tensions and “prevent a world war, the possibility of which has been increasing recently.” …

In the proposed deal with Trump, Moscow seems to be offering little of substance in exchange for the US renouncing Ukraine and Crimea, all of the post-Soviet space and more. Still, plenty in Russia apparently believe such a deal is possible because Moscow thinks it is negotiating from a position of substantial strength. Trump and his team, meanwhile, are seen as weak and under life-threatening internal and external pressure to show at least some foreign policy success. Therefore, Moscow believes Washington may settle to give away Ukraine and Moldova into Russian servitude because the Trump White House does not care much about those far-off, unstable and impoverished places. The only serious threat, as seen from Moscow, is that Trump may be so weak politically and his White House team so incompetent that his administration might prematurely collapse or he could even be impeached. Some voices inside Russia are, therefore, advising Putin to move swiftly and aggressively to secure the country’s vital interests before Trump implodes and to avoid tying himself and Russia too closely to the White House so as not to be engulfed by its potential eventual disgrace (Mk.ru, February 1).

If Trump Hands Over Ukraine, He Will Make Russia Great Again – Jamestown

This all sounds delusional to me. Russia gets its sphere of influence, and Trump gets empty promises.