Since at least February, and possibly as early as March 2019, the United States has had compelling intelligence that a committed adversary, Russia, paid bounties to Taliban-linked fighters to kill American troops in Afghanistan. American service members were reportedly killed as a result.
To this day, the president of the United States has done nothing about it.
Instead, President Trump dismissed the intelligence as not “credible” and “possibly another fabricated Russia hoax, maybe by the Fake News” that is “wanting to make Republicans look bad!!!”
Mr. Trump also claimed that neither he nor Vice President Mike Pence was ever told about this critical intelligence before it was first reported in The New York Times.… Seguir leyendo »
Sometimes, foreign policy consists of trying to make lemonade out of lemons.
In the case of the recently signed U.S.-Taliban agreement on Afghanistan, President Trump provided the lemons, and the lead U.S. negotiator, Zalmay Khalilzad, and his team did the squeezing. Mr. Trump made clear that he intended to withdraw American forces from Afghanistan — with or without a “deal.” Then NATO partners pressured the United States not to reward the Taliban by conceding their long-held objective of forcing an American withdrawal for free. So, the president reportedly gave his negotiators a finite window to explore whether some deal was achievable.… Seguir leyendo »
Americans would be wise to brace for war with Iran.
Full-scale conflict is not a certainty, but the probability is higher than at any point in decades. Despite President Trump’s oft-professed desire to avoid war with Iran and withdraw from military entanglements in the Middle East, his decision to order the killing of Maj. Gen. Qassim Suleimani, Iran’s second most important official, as well as Iraqi leaders of an Iranian-backed militia, now locks our two countries in a dangerous escalatory cycle that will likely lead to wider warfare.
How did we get here? What are the consequences of these targeted killings?… Seguir leyendo »
Traditionally, the departing president writes a personal letter to his successor, offering wisdom and best wishes. President Barack Obama duly left such a letter for President Trump, as President George W. Bush did eight years earlier.
Imagine if Vladimir Putin, the Russian president, had also written a letter to Mr. Trump, somehow inserting it in the top drawer of the Resolute Desk in the Oval Office. What advice would Mr. Putin have offered his American counterpart, the man whom Mr. Putin tried to help elect, according to the American intelligence community?
Mr. Putin’s objectives are plain: to restore Russia to global greatness at the expense of the United States and to divide Europe by weakening NATO and the European Union.… Seguir leyendo »
North Korea’s substantial nuclear arsenal and improving intercontinental ballistic missile capacity pose a growing threat to America’s security. But we need not face an immediate crisis if we play our hand carefully.
Given the bluster emanating from Pyongyang and Bedminster, N.J., Americans can be forgiven for feeling anxious.
Shortly after adoption of new United Nations sanctions last weekend, North Korea threatened retaliation against the United States “thousands of times” over. Those sanctions were especially potent, closing loopholes and cutting off important funding for the North. August is also when the United States and South Korea conduct major joint military exercises, which always set Pyongyang on edge.… Seguir leyendo »
In 2011, the world’s newest nation was born amid joyous celebrations. The international community welcomed South Sudan not just with cheers but also with promises of help. The hope and promise of that day are now at grave risk of being squandered if the nation’s leaders don’t at long last provide leadership.
Violence that erupted in the capital city of Juba last December spread quickly, claiming the lives of thousands of men, women, and children and reopening bitter ethnic divisions. In the time since, almost 2 million people have been displaced from their homes, while residents in some parts of the country face the risk of famine.… Seguir leyendo »
On his recent trip to Africa, President Bush touted his signature HIV-AIDS initiative and the Millennium Challenge Account, positive programs that will benefit certain African countries. But neither addresses the critical challenge that plagues much of Africa and important parts of the Middle East and Asia -- building the capacity of weak and failed states to provide for their citizens and counter transnational security threats.
In his 2006 National Security Strategy, Bush acknowledged that such states "are not only a threat to their people and a burden on regional economies, but are also susceptible to exploitation by terrorists, tyrants, and international criminals."… Seguir leyendo »