Trump keeps spoiling US Asia policy

Author: Hunter Marston, ANU Recent brinkmanship between the United States and Iran is the latest signal of Washington’s distraction from great power competition with China. The crisis in the Middle East and impeachment proceedings in Washington have distracted the Trump administration from its stated emphasis on the Indo-Pacific as its priority theatre. In many official statements and documents, including the 2017 National Security Strategy and Vice President Mike Pence’s China speech at the Hudson Institute in October 2018, the administration has articulated a strategy of great power competition with China…

Why instinct and ideology tell Trump to get out of the Middle East | US news

The crisis triggered by Donald Trump’s assassination of General Qassem Suleimani has crystallised Iran’s official thinking around a single, overriding demand: that American military forces should pack up their weapons, close their bases, and leave the Middle East for ever. The odd thing is, Trump seems to agree. Referring to last week’s retaliatory strikes on US targets, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, Iran’s leader, declared: “Military action like this is not sufficient. What is important is ending the corrupting presence of America.” Hassan Rouhani, the country’s president, said the only answer was…

How did Trump convince Kim that a vase is a better idea?

The year 2019 has expired, along with Kim Jong UnKim Jong UnKim calls for ‘positive and offensive’ North Korea security protections WH national security adviser on North Korean ‘Christmas gift’: ‘We’ll have to wait and see’ North Korea holds political conference before year-end concessions deadline set for US MORE’s promise/threat to send President Donald TrumpDonald John TrumpSchumer renews call for witnesses to testify in impeachment trial in wake of ‘game changer’ report Tulsi Gabbard: Impeachment has ‘greatly increased the likelihood’ of Trump reelection and GOP retaking House Susan Collins says…

COMMENTARY: How Putin, Xi and Trump shook up the world this past decade – National

Ten years ago this weekend, my colleague and friend Michelle Lang was killed in a homemade landmine strike on a Canadian light armoured vehicle that had just started a patrol a few kilometres south of Kandahar City. Lang was a keen student of the world, but there have been many changes in the global order since she passed away. My guess is that she would likely be stunned to know what is now what. Notwithstanding the Afghan war, after a long period of relative calm between 1990 and 2010, the…

2019, the year Trump made a hash of U.S. foreign policy

End of year proves a good platform for looking back to sum up administration achievements or missteps over the year, as well as how certain we are about the directions in which our nation is moving. Americans looking at foreign policy and our relationships overseas will find this year deepened U.S. isolationism, widened support for authoritarian governments, made American primacy in trade the weather vane for our thinking, as opposed to, say, human rights,  and continued Donald Trump’s role as a worldwide disrupter. The year will start and end with Trump’s…

Trudy Rubin: Bob Dylan would understand Trump foreign policy in 2019

Looking back at key foreign policy events of 2019, a line from Bob Dylan’s “Ballad of a Thin Man” popped into my head: “Something is happening and you don’t know what it is, do you, Mr. Jones?” Back in the day, there was much debate over whom Dylan had in mind. But “Mr. Jones” soon came to symbolize folks who remained oblivious to the seismic cultural shifts of the 1960s. So who is the Mr. Jones of 2019? In one sense, “Mr. Jones” could be all of us, as the…

Fuel deal between Trump and Australia backed

The US deal, which is yet to be signed off by Mr Trump, would allow Australia access to the Strategic Petroleum Reserve and its 640 million barrels of crude oil stored across a network of underground caverns. Loading Australia would be able to store its own fuel in the Texas and Louisiana facilities or use US-owned stocks in an emergency, effectively preventing the need to spend billions of dollars building storage facilities in Australia to meet the IEA rules. IEA executive director Fatih Birol endorsed the negotiations and said a…

As Trump alienates, China invests in diplomacy, global outreach

Over the summer, Donald Trump boasted to supporters, “We are so respected, you have no idea. How our nation has gone so far up in the eyes and the minds of the rest of the world.” As recently as two weeks ago, after leaders of U.S. allies mocked the American president in an unguarded moment, Trump added, “This country is so respected. And we were not respected four years ago. We were laughed at.” This was, of course, the opposite of the truth. Since Trump took office, international support and…