Moon of Alabama – Dec 29, 2018
We pointed out that overruling his advisors by ending the U.S. war on Syria was a decision that will define Trump’s presidency:
This was the first time Trump took a decisive stand against the borg, the permanent neoconservative and interventionist establishment in his administration, the military and congress, that usually dictates U.S. foreign policy.
It was this decision, and that he stuck to it, which finally made him presidential.
Three analysts explain why Trump will need to go further down that road by finding people who diligently implement his foreign policy instead of undermining it.
Gareth Porter describes how the U.S. military under Secretary of Defense Mattis implemented its own policy, one far from President Trump’s wishes. It delayed his policy of withdrawal from Syria again and again. Trump finally broke the scheme:
Mattis and Dunford were consciously exploiting Trump’s defensiveness about a timeline to press ahead with their own strategy unless and until Trump publicly called them on it. That is what finally happened some weeks after Trump’s six month deadline had passed. The claim by Trump advisors that they were taken by surprise was indeed disingenuous. What happened last week was that Trump followed up on the clear policy he had laid down in April.
The former Indian Ambassador Bhadrakumar also calls Mattis resignation a defining moment in U.S. foreign policy. He points out that the resistance of the borg against the elected president’s policy is in defiance of the will of the people:
The really stunning part is that the bulk of America’s political class, think tanks and the media have rallied to support Mattis in an astounding display of defiance and spite toward their elected president. Suffice to say, there has been an insurrection against Trump’s foreign policy agenda and Mattis was a key figure in that enterprise. Quintessentially, the established American political system – what Trump calls the “Swamp” – refuses to make way for the elected president, his mandate from the people for his political platform notwithstanding. Isn’t it a sham that the US claims to have a government “of the people, by the people, for the people”?
The majority of the people indeed agree with Trump’s policy: