Trump’s ignorance has created an international crisis

  

Category:  News & Politics

Via:  john-russell  •  9 months ago  •  26 comments

Trump’s ignorance has created an international crisis
The danger posed by that ignorance is matched daily by the crises created by Trump's own erraticism. His performance as commander in chief has been shaped by a collection of scattered grievances, emotional impulses and random tweets. As the Financial Times's Philip Stephens has said of Trump's foreign policy, 'Looking for a framework is like searching for symmetrical patterns in a bowl of spaghetti.'

S E E D E D   C O N T E N T



During the early morning hours of Sept. 15, 1950, Gen. Douglas MacArthur would lead U.S.-troops on the most audacious amphibious landing in U.S. history. The assault at Inchon in South Korea was viewed beforehand as being so reckless that the Joint Chiefs of Staff dismissed the proposal out of hand. 'We drew up a list of every conceivable and natural handicap,' one naval officer remembered later, 'and Inchon had them all.'

To succeed, U.S. troops would have to navigate their way through a tortuous, heavily fortified channel before facing some of the most deadly tides in Asia. With U.S. soldiers pinned down on the southeastern tip of the Korean Peninsula, failure at Inchon could have led to total defeat in Korea.

MacArthur's arrogant belief in his own infallibility allowed him to see opportunity where others saw only peril. But the legendary general brought more than a bloated ego to battle; he also carried with him a mastery of military history and, with it, the knowledge of Japan's successful 1904 landing at the same treacherous port. That insight served MacArthur well and reversed, almost overnight, the grim trajectory of America's so-called Forgotten War.

President Trump's decision last week to assassinate the most powerful military figure in the Middle East was, likewise, audacious. But unlike MacArthur at Inchon, Trump likely did not grasp the gravity of his decision. How could he? The former reality-TV star has long been ignorant of world history and current events. During a 2015 interview, then-candidate Trump did not even know who Maj. Gen. Qasem Soleimani was. After prompting, Trump mistakenly identified the Iranian general as a Kurdish commander. Once Trump's ignorance was revealed, the frustrated candidate weakly attacked the interviewer for 'throwing around names of people and where they live.'

The danger posed by that ignorance is matched daily by the crises created by Trump's own erraticism. His performance as commander in chief has been shaped by a collection of scattered grievances, emotional impulses and random tweets. As the Financial Times's Philip Stephens has said of Trump's foreign policy, 'Looking for a framework is like searching for symmetrical patterns in a bowl of spaghetti.'

This is, after all, a president who spent last summer withholding military aid from a besieged democratic ally while pressuring its leaders to investigate a political opponent. Then, stepping in front of a bank of White House cameras, he asked the same of China. Trump also declared himself 'The Chosen One' while embracing the title of 'King of Israel,' ordered American companies to leave China, manipulated U.S. markets by lying about phone calls with leaders of that same country and canceled bilateral meetings with a NATO leader because she refused to sell Greenland.

Trump's increasingly erratic behavior received much attention at the time, with the Associated Press's Jonathan Lemire and Zeke Miller noting in July that the United States' foreign policy had become unmoored after Defense Secretary Jim Mattis, Director of National Intelligence Daniel Coats and others were driven from the administration. Jeffrey Goldberg, editor of the Atlantic, followed with an article appropriately titled 'He's Getting Worse,' in which he glumly noted that 'there is no reason to hope that he will reform. His followers reward his radicalism and his handlers are among the most cynical figures in American political history.'

We now find ourselves living through a time when those same administration officials are providing reckless counsel to an ignorant and erratic president. Though he shares MacArthur's sense of infallibility, Trump spends most of his waking hours showing the world just how fallible he is. Critics have long warned of a time when this fatally flawed man would be forced to confront an international crisis.

That time has arrived and it is a crisis of Trump's own making.

Soleimani was a malevolent force on the world stage. But so, too, is Kim Jong Un. Will the North Korean dictator be next on the president's kill list? What of Syria's Bashar al-Assad? He is responsible for more deaths than any Arab leader since Saddam Hussein. And what stabilizing impact did the Iraqi tyrant's death have on the region?

Contrary to the vows of candidate Trump, it is likely that the killing of Soleimani will now only deepen U.S.-involvement in a region that has already claimed too many American lives. With Russia firmly ensconced in Syria, Iraqi discontent on the rise and Iran's nuclear program restarted, expect more Americans to die across the Middle East in the coming years. With his audacious attack, Trump has further isolated the United States from its allies, provided a lifeline to Iran's terrorist regime and broken yet another of his campaign promises.

Inchon this is not.


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JohnRussell
1  seeder  JohnRussell    9 months ago
The former reality-TV star has long been ignorant of world history and current events. During a 2015 interview, then-candidate Trump did not even know who Maj. Gen. Qasem Soleimani was. After prompting, Trump mistakenly identified the Iranian general as a Kurdish commander. Once Trump's ignorance was revealed, the frustrated candidate weakly attacked the interviewer for 'throwing around names of people and where they live.'
 
 
 
Vic Eldred
2  Vic Eldred    9 months ago

It wouldn't be that Iran, which is suffering under economic sanctions is trying to take advantage of the faux impeachment and this being an election year?

 
 
 
Just Jim NC TttH
2.1  Just Jim NC TttH  replied to  Vic Eldred @2    9 months ago

384

 
 
 
Ronin2
2.2  Ronin2  replied to  Vic Eldred @2    9 months ago

I don't know why. All they have to do is listen to the US media and the Democrats in Congress to know exactly how divided the US is. Iran can present themselves as a leverage tool against Trump.

What better time for Iran to try and push for an advantage. 

I am sure they are hoping for one of the Democratic candidates to win the presidency and return things to Bush Jr and Obama normal. Where they can kill and attack a few US assets here and there; without the worry of serious reprisal.

Wonder if Iran will be stupid enough to voice support for any of the Democratic candidates?

 
 
 
Vic Eldred
2.2.1  Vic Eldred  replied to  Ronin2 @2.2    9 months ago
I don't know why. All they have to do is listen to the US media and the Democrats in Congress to know exactly how divided the US is.

That is a very important point. Don't think the Russians didn't see how the democratic party pitted one race against another for decades. They all learned how to play the game. Iran, China and North Korea are hoping for another democrat in November.

What better time for Iran to try and push for an advantage. 

This is the time. No matter how Trump responds it should hurt politically. If he wins the election they will be screwed!


I am sure they are hoping for one of the Democratic candidates to win the presidency and return things to Bush Jr and Obama normal. Where they can kill and attack a few US assets here and there; without the worry of serious reprisal.

Iran truly became a regional power during the 8 years of Obama. Iran won't be like Iraq, but fortunately Trump won't be like Obama.


Wonder if Iran will be stupid enough to voice support for any of the Democratic candidates?

Funny thing....they are selling them out right now:

https://thenewstalkers.com/vic-eldred/group_discuss/7468/irans-foreign-minister-threatens-to-expose-western-diplomats-who-took-bribes-to-create-the-iran-nuclear-deal?g=15

Perhaps they thought progressives should have done more to oppose the Trump sanctions? Payback is a bitch!

 
 
 
Nerm_L
3  Nerm_L    9 months ago

More Americans dying across the Middle East is unnecessary.  We only need to withdraw.  The status quo isn't accomplishing anything.

Trump, as usual, has changed the status quo.  That's the international crisis.  The United States has directly attacked Iran.  The Iranian Revolutionary regime must respond or lose power; Trump has not given them any other choice.  More of the same isn't going to be enough.  This is a test of Iran's national resolve.  State sponsored terrorism won't be enough; that's a craven response to a direct attack on the regime.  If the Iranian government responds with terrorism then any terrorist organization, such as ISIS, can replace the regime.  Iran would become embroiled in civil war.  The government must respond directly to demonstrate that government has authority and capability to defend Iran.

Like it or not, Trump has placed himself on the front line.  Trump has made himself a target for Iranian revenge.  Unlike past Presidents, Trump has more to lose since his international businesses are vulnerable.  Trump has established a test of will between himself and Hassan Rouhani.  Trump has as much or more to lose than does Rouhani.

The status quo in the Middle East is not accomplishing anything.  The United States has been trying to fight a war while wearing manacles.  That didn't work in Korea and didn't work in Vietnam.  The Middle East has become another American quagmire.  It's time to change the status quo.

 
 
 
Nerm_L
3.1  Nerm_L  replied to  Nerm_L @3    9 months ago

Hasn't anyone been paying attention?  Trump drew a red line after directly attacking the Iranian Revolutionary regime.  Trump has forced Iran to respond.  The status quo has not been to provoke and then draw a red line.  Trump's lack of conformance to the established status quo is what has created an international crisis.  

Trump hasn't threatened to remove a rogue government; there hasn't been a threat of regime change.  Trump has threatened to do to Iran what Iranian state sponsored terrorism has been doing to others.

Trump's threat against cultural sites wasn't motivated by ignorance.  That's what Iranian state sponsored terrorism does.  Trump has threatened to play the game according to Iran's rules.  Trump has threatened to fight state sponsored terrorism with state sponsored terrorism.  That's the game changer; that breaks the status quo.

The Iranian Revolutionary regime will have to defend itself from the Iranian people when confronted with state sponsored terrorism.  Trump has not threatened Iran with a geopolitical struggle; Trump has threatened Iranian state sponsored terrorism with an existential crisis.  How will terrorists fight terrorism? 

 
 
 
It Is ME
5  It Is ME    9 months ago

What is this new  "Honest Crises" the "Left" thinks Trump all of a sudden got started ?

 
 
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