BE AFRAID... BE VERY AFRAID
Whilst the full horrors of the Donald Trump presidency, now well into its second year, are still being revealed to a hardly comprehending world, it is about to get worse.
On April 9th,the somewhat notorious US foreign affairs commentator John Bolton, who came to achieve international notoriety in 2004 as the splenetic US Ambassador to the UN, was formally appointed national security advisor as selected by Trump. His reputation is fairly consistent as an extreme warmonger, a diplomatic grenade of a man. He favours military intervention and forcible regime change. He said last month that it would be perfectly “legitimate” for the US to launch a first nuclear strike against Pyongyang.
But although that will colour the forthcoming Trump negotiations with Kim Jong Un, before that it seems he will first attend to his master’s will in dismantling the existing Iranian nuclear deal and thereby be at odds with the US’s European allies who co-negotiated and signed the Obama negotiated treaty agreement and have been content with it.
Thus does Trump exercise his Islamophobia? Saudi is course ‘a US Ally’ and client for megabucks worth of weaponry. Iran has very little interaction with the US. It is of course the nation identified as hosting the main alternative branch to Sunni Islam. Trump is probably only vaguely aware of any important eschatological difference, but what matters to him is that Israel is the main proponent – an important support base for Trump in the US of a military crushing of Iran and reimposing sanctions on Iran-so long as it is US Troops and military hardware doing the crushing – much the position the Saudis have long taken ref the US and their long term enemies, the Iranians.
It all bodes ill for the world.
The forthcoming North Korea meeting, if it happens, where the script tells us that Trump will seek North Korea’s agreement to surrender its nuclear capacity, is indeed intriguing, since by demonstrating by its recent space rocket tests, that Pyongyang really does have the capacity to launch and probably hit US target cities; the North Koreans have already achieved what most observers thought to be their priority –that is to be able to brandish the stick of retaliation towards any attack on them. Mutually Assured Destruction –MAD as it was known- but it does seem to have worked around the world historically. It’s hard to see for what this could be traded away.
Trump has proved to be an even greater disaster than had been predicted, not helped by his vast inconsistencies. He has now announced that he is reviewing a cornerstone policy of his election campaign whereby the TTIP agreement, negotiated by Obama over some nine years would be dropped by his administration, which he has already repudiated on taking office. This time, he is exploring the possibility of rejoining. It has probably come as a shock to him that other nations do not feel any need to do as the US does.
Undoubtedly dismayed by the fact that the other partner nations in TTIP decided to go on without him, - heavyweights such as Japan and Australia - it seemed that he was giving up the acknowledged ‘economic leadership’ that the US has enjoyed for decades, but perhaps ‘wiser’ counsels have prevailed- it’s too soon to say.
Of course, he has had major upsets in his government appointments also, which are ongoing. The Republican party whose president he is, are also struggling in the wake of Trump’s progress. The government carries on, driven by its own momentum. The question is do things get better or worse? With Mr Bolton at his right hand it can be assumed that they can only get worse.
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This Newnations Bulletin for May 1st 2018 also includes a closer look at SYRIA and the events associated with the region: “Will Syria Overcome the Threat of Chemical weapons to achieve Peace?” by our middle east contributor Alessandro Bruno. He also considers the role of ‘the Deep State’ in the situation so far.
GO TO: "WILL SYRIA OVERCOME..."
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Our third article by Sara Bielecki, sheds more light on what is probably world’s biggest trade deal – the ‘Obama’ TTIP that the US walked away from, but whilst this was designed to better integrate China into vast US- led world trade deals, it is now China that will be the principal beneficiary, or, the US will be admitted on not quite so good terms that it had originally.
GO TO: "ROLLING OUT THE BRI" the massive investment Chinese scheme that will travel as far as Europe. Here we see the ambition of China’s well prepared economic development trade plan. It promises to open up the geopolitical “heart of the world” - that is the vast area known as Central Asia, both land routes and sea routes.
China is already deeply involved and demonstrated its possibility and civil engineering capacity, some years ago with the Karakorum Highway, following the Indus river basin through the previously impenetrable mountains, with a modern highway to open up trade with Pakistan and access that nation’s ‘warm waters’ port, for the export of Chinese manufactures from Sichuan.
Clive Lindley - Publisher/Editor