Tag Archives: American Foreign Affairs

We will survive Trump and Trumpism….Americans and the World must know this….

A former Hillary Clinton  foreign policy advisor , , does a piece in Foregin Affairs Magazine telling America and more to the point the world , that America is more than just Donald Trump….

That he might last in office for another 2 1/2 year’s MAYBE….

That if he doesn’t make it thru 2020?

American will shake his time in office and move ahead….

That because America IS a Great country of over 300 million and no one man , even as President, can stifle the aspiration and vigor of its people….

The warnings started long before Donald Trump was even a presidential candidate. For at least a decade, a growing chorus of foreign policy experts had been pointing to signs that the international order was coming apart. Authoritarian powerswere flouting long-accepted rules. Failed states were radiating threats. Economies were being disrupted by technology and globalization; political systems, by populism. Meanwhile, the gap in power and influence between the United States—the leader and guarantor of the existing order—and the rest of the world was closing.

Then came Trump’s election. To those already issuing such warnings, it sounded the death knell of the world as it was. Even many of those who had previously resisted pessimism suddenly came to agree. As they saw it, the U.S.-led order—the post–World War II system of norms, institutions, and partnerships that has helped manage disputes, mobilize action, and govern international conduct—was ending for good. And what came next, they argued, would be either an entirely new order or a period with no real order at all.

But the existing order is more resilient than this assessment suggests. There is no doubt that Trump represents a meaningful threat to the health of both American democracy and the international system. And there is a nonnegligible risk that he could drag the country into a constitutional crisis, or the world into a crippling trade war or even an all-out nuclear war. Yet despite these risks, rumors of the international order’s demise have been greatly exaggerated. The system is built to last through significant shifts in global politics and economics and strong enough to survive a term of President Trump.

This more optimistic view is offered not as comfort but as a call to action. The present moment demands resolve and affirmative thinking from the foreign policy community about how to sustain and reinforce the international order, not just lamentations about Trump’s destructiveness …..


Open Thread for April 2, 2015…Iran talks will continue…American and the EU on the same page?

There is an underlying story running on these negotiations ..

It continues from the Ukrainian conflict to Iran….

The United States and Europe are NOT on the same page in Foreign Affairs….

In the Ukraine, the American President is being pushed to supply heavy military weapons to the Ukrainian’s to mount resistance against the Russian backed separatists…..

The Europeans do NOT support this…and are for talking to Russia while the Russian’s extend agrresive action against the Baltic states….The Euorpeans do NOT spend a lot of money on Defense and are busy now looking at Russia forarys around their borders, while they extend their small defense assets in the Middle East…But the rewal issue is the HUGE amount of trade they do WITH Russia….

In the case of Iran…

The Europeans are standing on the side lines salvating at a open Iranaian commercial market that could supply oil and a young BIG commerical market…

The nuclear bomb issue is NOT a big thing for Europe which is out of the range of Europe…


In two Foreign Affair’s issues that the US would like Europen’s backing….

That backing is NOT there….

President Obama is dealing with triangles in his Foreign Affairs efforts ….

At home form Congress….

Abroad from the Europeans….

The Iran Letter thing has come back to hurt Republicans….

President’s negociate Foreign Affairs ….

Congrees votes on Treaties….

That’s the way it’s ALWAYS been….

The ‘Letter’ to Iran tried to go around the above….

It failed….

attribution: White House

How do you respond when someone says something totally outrageous, but you don’t want to take the bait by getting angry and worked up and possibly coming out looking like the bad guy yourself? One classic response to that situation is to just look a little stunned and say “Wow,” then let it hang there, giving people the chance to dwell on what the other guy said.When it comes to the Senate Republican open letter to Iran, President Obama is sort of doing the world leader version of that. Obama isn’t expressing outrage or anger over the letter, he’s just sorta … letting it hang out there what those 47 senators did, initially calling it “somewhat ironic to see some members of Congress wanting to make common cause with hardliners in Iran.” In the trailer for an upcoming interview with Vice News, Obama continues the same tone:

I’m embarrassed for them. For them to address a letter to the ayatollah, who they claim is our mortal enemy, and their basic argument to them is “don’t deal with our president ’cause you can’t trust him to follow through on an agreement.” That’s close to unprecedented.

In short, “Wow, guys. I think you made yourselves look bad enough, so I’m just going to leave it there.”(Via Politico)

John Kerry…American Should reach out and help other countries…

The current American Secretary of State has gone a long way from his college days when he complained about the US doing to much….

Now he feels America has scant support for reaching out helping the rest of the world solve its problems…


These days, rarely a week goes by when he’s not flying to another country, managing American involvement in Ukraine, the much-discussed but still nascent “pivot to Asia,” negotiations over Iran’s nuclear program, the Syrian civil war, a full collection of African conflicts and his own failed attempts to make any movement toward an Israeli-Palestinian settlement.

It worries him that he doesn’t feel he has enough support for these efforts back home.

The 1966 anxiety about interventionism stuck out to him when he re-read the speech as he was preparing this year’s, Kerry said Sunday. With Vietnam, 30 years in the Senate, a presidential run and 15 months handling America’s insertion all over the world as President Barack Obama’s top diplomat now behind him, Kerry told this year’s graduating seniors that the biggest danger now is an America that isn’t getting involved enough.

“We cannot allow a hangover from the excessive interventionism of the last decade to lead now to an excess of isolationism in this decade,” Kerry said Sunday. “I can tell you for certain, most of the rest of the world doesn’t lie awake at night worrying about America’s presence — they worry about what would happen in our absence.”

Particularly in international affairs — but also on climate change, on the influx of immigrants, on energy policy and on infrastructure — Kerry said the world is changing more quickly today than when he first spoke at Yale, making even more embarrassing the failure of governments in Washington and beyond to keep up.

“The problem is today’s institutions are simply not keeping up or even catching up to the felt needs of our time. Right before our eyes, difficult decisions are deferred or avoided altogether,” Kerry said. “And the sum total of this inaction is stealing the future from all of us.”


Former Defense Secretary Robert Gates knocks US Government ‘Dysfunction’….


Ya Think??????

The founding fathers set the place up to work this way….

But with one faction out there hell bent to making sure the other guys/gals don’t get ANYTHING?

Compromise is in short change….

Gates looks at the problem from an internal and Foreign Policy point of view, and praises President Obama on one hand and complains on the other…

image…. kqed.org

Former Defense Secretary Robert Gates on Sunday slammed Washington dysfunction, warning it was the biggest threat that America was facing.

“I think the greatest national security threat to this country at this point is the two square miles that encompasses the Capitol building and the White House,” Gates said on CBS’s “Face the Nation” when asked whether Russia was the greatest national security threat to the U.S.
Gates said congressional gridlock and infighting was a bigger problem than any foreign threat and that it weakened the U.S. abroad.

“If we can’t get some of our problems solved here at home, if we can’t get our finances in a more ordered fashion, if we can’t begin to tackle some of the internal issues that we have, if we can’t get some compromises on the Hill that move the country forward, then I think these foreign threats recede significantly into, as far as being a risk to the well-being and the future of this country,” he said. “I think that other countries are watching us very carefully.”


The US Military and State Department walk into 2014……

While the US State Department maybe the assigned organization to handle Foreign Affairs….

The US Military is the ‘boots on the ground’ participant …

2014 leaves both in the middle of several sticky situations….

Syrian civil war

The Pentagon appeared poised to launch strikes in Syria in August after the United States said it had confirmed that Syrian President Bashar Assad’s forces had used chemical weapons, thus crossing President Obama’s “red line.”

The Navy first deployed destroyers off the coast of Syria. Then Obama said the United States should take action — but he wanted to get approval from Congress first. The move prompted a backlash from many Republicans and Democrats, and a vote looked like it might fail in the House.

The pivotal vote never materialized. After what appeared to be an offhand comment from Secretary of State John Kerry, the United States and Russia agreed to a plan to destroy all of Syria’s chemical weapons stockpiles, thereby removing the rationale for the United States to attack.

But the near three-year civil war rages on in Syria, and the death toll went into six figures in 2013. The conflict — and the hesitancy of the Obama administration to intervene — was a frequent source of tension between the White House, the military and Republican defense hawks.

War in Afghanistan

The U.S. military prepared for the endgame of the Afghanistan War in 2013, but much still remains up in the air with only a year to go before the full hand-off of security to the Afghans.

The United States had hoped to have a bilateral security agreement in place at this point, but Afghan President Hamid Karzai is once again proving difficult. Karzai has refused to sign the agreement that U.S. officials thought was a done deal.

Karzai now says he will wait until the presidential elections in the spring. American threats to pull out all troops from Afghanistan if the deal was not signed by the end of the year failed to persuade Karzai to sign the agreement.

The U.S. military will head into 2014 planning to draw down to 32,000 troops by the spring. Then, commanders will be obliged to wait to see what transpires between the Obama administration and Karzai in terms of an agreed post-2014 force…..


Is John Kerry out shining Hillary Clinton as Secretary of State?

John Kerry as the American Sec of State is doing the Foreign Affairs dance on Iran and Afghanistan….

It remains if his goals in both places will be deemed successful in the long run…

But there IS gonna be a natural inclination to compare HIS work with the person who he got the job after from….Hillary Clinton….

When John Kerry succeeded Hillary Clinton as secretary of state in February, Clinton’s emotional departure from the State Department received blanket media coverage. Kerry’s arrival received next to none.

“So here’s the big question before the country and the world and the State Department after the last eight years,” Kerry said in a speech to State Department employees on his first day on the job. “Can a man actually run the State Department? I don’t know.”

As the crowd roared with laughter, Kerry pushed the joke too far.

“As the saying goes,” he said, “I have big heels to fill.”

Nearly three weeks later, Kerry’s first foreign-policy speech as secretary, an hour-long defense of diplomacy and foreign aid, was a flop. The Washington Post gave it 500 words. The New York Times ignored it. (He was also accused of accidentally inventing a new country called “Kyrzakhstan,” an apparent conflation of Kazakhstan and Kyrgyzstan.)

The nearly universal expectation was that Kerry’s tenure would be overshadowed by his predecessor’s, for a long list of reasons. For starters, he was arriving in Foggy Bottom when the country seemed to be withdrawing from the world. Exhausted by two long wars, Americans were wary of ambitious new foreign engagements—certainly of military ones, but of entangling diplomatic ones, too. Barack Obama’s administration, accelerating a process that had begun in the early 1960s under President Kennedy, was centralizing foreign-policy decision making in the White House’s National Security Council, marginalizing the State Department. Kerry hadn’t even been Obama’s first choice for the position, getting nominated only when the candidacy of United Nations Ambassador Susan Rice was derailed by her tenuous association with the Benghazi-consulate tragedy in 2012. (Rice ended up running the National Security Council.) The appetite for risk taking in the White House is never high, but after the Benghazi imbroglio, it was particularly low. Finally, Kerry, a defeated presidential candidate, was devoid of the sexiness that automatically attaches to a figure, like Hillary Clinton, who remains a legitimate presidential prospect. The consensus in Washington was that Kerry was a boring if not irrelevant man stepping into what was becoming a boring, irrelevant job.

Yet his time at the State Department has been anything but boring—and no one can argue his lack of relevance. Nearly a year into his tenure, Kerry is the driving force behind a flurry of Mideast diplomacy the scope of which has not been seen in years. In the face of widespread skepticism, he has revived the Israeli-Palestinian peace process; brokered a deal with Russia to remove chemical weapons from Syria; embarked on a new round of nuclear talks with Iran, holding the highest-level face-to-face talks with Iranian diplomats in years; and started hammering out a new post-withdrawal security agreement with Afghan President Hamid Karzai. Some of these initiatives seemed to begin almost by accident; all of them could still go awry; any of them could blow up in Kerry’s face. His critics say that even if these initiatives don’t collapse, they may do more to boost Kerry’s stature than to increase geopolitical stability. But it’s looking more and more possible that when the history of early-21st-century diplomacy gets written, it will be Kerry who is credited with making the State Department relevant again.




If the wind blows a certain way…..

Hillary COULD become Kerry’s boss in a little more than 3 years…..

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