Opinion: ‘President Trump, the world is on Line One … says it’s important’

(AP)

Now comes the scary part of the story, the part where the shortcomings of bluster as a foreign policy begin to make themselves known. This is also the part in which the bumbling amateurism already displayed by the Trump administration on every aspect of domestic policy gets translated onto the global stage as well, and at a critical moment.

I’m sure it will go well. Aren’t you?

Let’s start in Asia. On the eve of an already difficult summit between President Trump and Chinese President Xi Jinping, our friends in North Korea have fired a medium-range ballistic missile into the Sea of Japan, just as a reminder of their presence. Trump had already announced that if China is not willing to commit in these talks to major action to contain North Korea, the United States will move to solve the problem on its own, with “all options on the table.”

Meanwhile, in Syria, the Trump administration has publicly signaled a major change in U.S. policy by announcing that it no longer seeks regime change and is willing to accept Bashar al-Assad’s continued rule as president of that tragic land.  Three days later, Assad rewarded that new U.S. approach by launching a brutal nerve-gas attack on civilian targets in his own country, which is a clear international war crime.

In response to the Syrian attack, President Trump released the following statement:A couple of things about that statement:

1.) Shortly after reading aloud that condemnation of “weakness and irresolution” by the previous administration, White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer acknowledged that yes, the Trump administration still backs Assad as president of Syria and still rejects regime change as a goal of U.S. policy. “There is not a fundamental option of regime change as there has been in the past,” Spicer said. “I think we would look like, to some degree, rather silly not acknowledging the political realities that exist in Syria.”

2.) In September of 2013, as President Obama was deciding whether to use military force in Syria against Assad for earlier use of WMD, a private citizen by the name of Donald Trump made his own opinion known:


A few weeks ago, as you may recall, Trump announced to the world that health care “is an unbelievably complex subject,” that “nobody knew health care could be so complicated.”  Well, health care is indeed a complex issue that has a significant impact on the lives of millions of people, but compared to problems such as Syria and North Korea, it is simple and straightforward.

In North Korea, for example, economic sanctions and other “non-kinetic” options have been implemented by every U.S. president since the days of Jimmy Carter, to little or no effect on the regime.  But any thought of military action has to be weighed against the grim reality of North Korea’s nuclear arsenal and the presence of the world’s largest concentration of artillery along its border with South Korea, within easy reach of Seoul, a city of 10 million. Almost 30,000 U.S. military personnel are also stationed in South Korea.

If a confrontation between two stable, mature leaders such as Trump and Kim Jong-un should get out of hand, within days the death toll could be counted in the millions. And by warning ominously that the United States will soon resolve the North Korea matter on its own, with all options on the table, Trump has more or less established a red line of his own on the Korean Peninsula.

In ordinary times, the leaders of China and the United States would emerge from this upcoming summit with a reassuring pledge to work together to tamp down tensions with North Korea, even if the actions agreed upon by China don’t amount to much. But by upping the ante so high, Trump and his crack team of presidential advisers have made that kind of outcome more difficult to achieve and sell.

Then again, I’m sure they’ve thought all of that through and know exactly what they’re doing.

 

Reader Comments 0

910 comments
Marcella Jordan
Marcella Jordan

God help us, the blood of the innocent children are on our hands.

Chris Strope
Chris Strope

Yup. Give it a break with your Sanctimoniously righteous posture, Liberals! Where were you when AMERICA NEEDED ATTENTION AND SOLUTIONS IN THE LAST 8 YEARS!? From the Evil Tyranny. You Your Phony, hypocritical caring for the world makes me sick! 😡 ♥️🇺🇸

James Minor
James Minor

He's too worried about who's gonna make fun of him next. So all he can do is scapegoat.

Lee Griffith
Lee Griffith

You lost me at bookman. I know without reading it is more liberal dribble.

Kevin Kitchen
Kevin Kitchen

I don't have any love for Syria or North Korea but it's nice and good to see at least a few people stand up to that bully Trump and let him know they ain't listening to his BS. Trump is every bit as bad as Assad or Kim.

Kellie Jo
Kellie Jo

And I guess Odumba had some great solutions for the chemical attacks???

Kevin Kitchen
Kevin Kitchen

Actually I support Trump's attack. I have no love for Assad either and anybody who gases civilians deserves what he gets. I'm just making the point that Trump is on no higher a moral ground than Kim or Assad.

Marvin Junior
Marvin Junior

Trump prefers forcefully running an oil pipeline through Native American sacred land poisoning their water, cutting off Meals on Wheels to the elderly and stopping aftercare programs for children.

Marvin Junior
Marvin Junior

I don't expect Trump to do anything except keep destroying the United States.

Dwight Elzy
Dwight Elzy

Its sad. But I always look at us funny, because regardless of how life is lost, we always get more worked up after the fact rather than b more pro active. There's no easy fixes, I just wish we all valued every humans life equally.

Rick
Rick

Well at this point we all need to hope that Jesus loves the leader of the right wing mini majority as much as they claim he does.

Christian Meehan
Christian Meehan

Great "journalism" AJC. Now remind me Jay Bookman, what proof do we have Assad did this attack? I'm not saying he automatically didn't, but for you to think it was automatically him and to state this as fact is just ludicrous at best and propaganda/biased media at worst!

Linda Tilley
Linda Tilley

Errr Did you have a similar picture Headline when Pantywaists Obama drew the red line Err...that's why this happened again

Dwayne Nix
Dwayne Nix

Lord God, Help this world. We all belong to the same God, regardless of the color of your skin, race, gender, creed, or religion. This picture should be taken down.

cute southern mamma
cute southern mamma

when are the people of the United States of America going to wake up and oust the resident of the Trump towers and not the white house?

1stTruthOMeter
1stTruthOMeter

Here is the pattern. Trump accuses Obama of committing a  felon and people expect Obama to prove he didn't. Trump accuses Susan Rice of committing a felon and now Susan Rice has to testify and prove she didn't. So, when Trump pulls your name out of his rump, be prepared to prove you are innocent of whatever. 

Dave Baird
Dave Baird

Of course it doesn't have anything to do with the red line obama drew in the syrian sand

Clyde Cattles
Clyde Cattles

The world should wake up, this should not be happening.

1stTruthOMeter
1stTruthOMeter

To Donald Trump: Maybe the reason you are being delegitimized is because YOU don't realize that YOU are now president. Stop blaming Obama (especially when we have your tweets where you told him not to go into Syria), Clinton and everyone but PUTIN.

Brenda Addison
Brenda Addison

So? ? ? ? ? ? AJC - get a job . SUPPORT AMERICA AND AMERICAS REAL AND LEGAL AMERICAN PRESIDENT DONALD TRUMP !

FIGMO2
FIGMO2

Hump day for faceboogers?

Anyhoo...'ya ever wanna go back in time when things were...you know...so much better?

NYTimes, May 31, 2015...

Western Officials Alarmed as ISIS Expands Territory in Libya

TRIPOLI, Libya — The branch of the Islamic State that controls Surt has expanded its territory and pushed back the militia from the neighboring city of Misurata, militia leaders acknowledged Sunday.

In the group’s latest attack, a suicide bomber killed at least four fighters on Sunday at a checkpoint west of Misurata on the coastal road to Tripoli, according to local officials and Libyan news reports.

The continued expansion inside Libya of the group, also known as ISIS or ISIL, has alarmed Western officials because of its proximity to Europe, across the Mediterranean.

Four years after the removal of Col. Muammar el-Qaddafi, the near collapse of the Libyan government has left no central authority to check the group’s advance or even partner with Western military efforts against it.

[snip]

The group’s expanding turf in Libya also gives it an alternative base of operations even as it appears to be gaining ground in other regions — in Palmyra in Syria and in Ramadi in Iraq.

The gains come despite an American-led bombing campaign aimed at rolling back the group’s original territory across the border between those countries.

http://tinyurl.com/cy2bn5y

"We came. We saw. He Died...hahahaha"

To what end, Madame Secretary. To what end? 

Wayne N Jenn
Wayne N Jenn

Syrian rebels used gas! Obama wouldn't have a clue and Hillary would want to charge a fee!

Amy Glover Giusto
Amy Glover Giusto

Forget blaming the last administration. Who is the president right now?

gotalife
gotalife

It happened on trump's watch and he did nothing. Period/.

Shon Woods
Shon Woods

He doesn't care about the world. He only wants to focus on big business!

Tonia Phillips
Tonia Phillips

Here in palm beach at mar lar go having filet Merion lol

Linda Hearn
Linda Hearn

More liars! He is doing right and quickly! Just getting started! Will keep winning as long as he wants

Jimboatl
Jimboatl

Must be a typo.  You meant "Will keep WHINING," right?

Its the truth
Its the truth

The only thing Trump could win is a lying contest.

Marshall Chasteen
Marshall Chasteen

Didn't hear Trump had drawn a line in the sand, since that Mediocre negro couldn't back up the one he had drawn

1stTruthOMeter
1stTruthOMeter

None of that negro's administration has gone to jail after eight years. Let's see how long you will be able to say that about your man Trump, and it hasn't been eight months yet..

Paul42
Paul42

Haven't these Facebook posters ever considered a moniker like "Racist4" instead of using their real name?

Marshall Chasteen
Marshall Chasteen

negro is spelled the way I wanted it, sorry you can't handle the truth

Paul42
Paul42

@USMC2841

Pretty weak, USMC.  Twenty years ago.  Sure took the N Koreans a lonnnnnnnnnnng time.

Most intel I see puts it squarely on the Chinese.  Absent Loral.

John Lewis
John Lewis

Republicans started all the wars in the middle east and now they gallivant around scape goating everybody else... The Republican false narrative has been rejected by we the people... Birther Trump is in over his head spewing bellicose rhetoric... War is looming on the horizon and this time American civilians will be in the crosshairs...

Justin Sisk
Justin Sisk

News flash! American civilians have been in the cross hairs for decades.

Keith Thurston
Keith Thurston

Republicans are usually left with a bag of chit from the previous Democrat president. Republican s are left with clean up.

mamanelle5
mamanelle5

Hooray! You said it correcting Mr. Lewis

mamanelle5
mamanelle5

You said it correctly, Mr. Lewis

Skiz Maroo
Skiz Maroo

Iraq is on Bush. Syria and Libya are on Obama and Hitlery. Get your facts straight.