KER Politics – Mon 30 Apr, 2018

Is an overall basic and coherent U.S. Foreign Policy possible?

Big Al says: “Our President definitely “shoots from the hip on many issues. In the case of an overall, cohesive foreign policy Mr. Ullman and co-author Arnaud de Borchgrave, bring out the importance of an overall foreign policy, but, rightfully ask the questions with Trump’s temperament and the convoluted world that we live in “is that even possible?” I believe that it a perfect world the answer would be “yes” but in our world, the answer is no.”

Desperately needed: an American foreign policy

By Harlan Ullman, Arnaud de Borchgrave Distinguished Columnist | April 30, 2018 at 8:10 AM

The United States has a national security strategy and a national defense strategy. Both were written by professionals. Both are largely viewed as credible. But what is America’s foreign policy?

Is it “America first” and what does that mean? Is it a policy of bilateral rather than multilateral diplomacy in which agreements such as the Paris Climate Change Accord and the TransPacific Partnership are impediments? Or is it a policy of lessened U.S. international engagement and involvement?

The answer is none of the above. American foreign policy today is what President Donald Trump decides it is, often on the spur of the moment. Moreover, it is a policy frequently announced by tweet in less than 280 characters that can come day or night and usually without warning. And it is a policy regularly uninformed by fact and truth and by presidential instinct and experience gained in a lifetime of real estate dealings.

On May 12, the president must decide on continuing the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action that prevents Iran from obtaining nuclear weapons. French President Emmanuel Macron and German Chancellor Angela Merkel both have tried to persuade the president to stay the course. But Macron has said publicly that he believes the president will not heed his advice.

In about month’s time, the president may meet with North Korea‘s leader Kim Jung Un to negotiate “denuclearization” of the peninsula and perhaps a peace treaty to replace the truce that halted the Korean conflict in 1953. How the president deals with the JCPOA could have serious if not profound consequences for the meeting with Kim. If the president chooses to leave that agreement, how might Kim react? Similarly, if he allows the agreement to continue, what responses might that provoke?

Withdrawal will obviously force Kim to question why the president would honor any agreement with his country. That doubt could induce Kim to impose certain guarantees to assure American compliance. One might be a formal treaty. But that treaty would require a two-thirds vote in the U.S. Senate. And, as with the Anti-Ballistic Treaty signed in 1972 and abrogated 30 years later, the same could happen with the North.

Similarly, what if the president took no action vis a vis the JCPOA? The likely answer is the same. At a later date, the president could change his mind. So …read more

Source:: The Korelin Economics Report

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