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The logic and strategy of Trump’s Presidency

Giancarlo Elia Valori

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[yt_dropcap type=”square” font=”” size=”14″ color=”#000″ background=”#fff” ] W [/yt_dropcap] hich are the psycho-political mechanisms and the actual policies that have led Donald Trump to power? It is not something simple to define. Certainly the Presidency of the businessman having a German origin – as former President Eisenhower’s – has gone against all the tenets and dogmas of the now intolerable politically correct. It has tackled the core of the US crisis that is much more evident at social level than Europe’s, which is not politically correct but at least has the Welfare State.

For example in almost 8% of American homes, there are “food insecure” children – a politically correct way to say that they do not eat enough.

Furthermore, in 2014, there were 43.1 million poor people in the United States, 19.4 millions of whom lived in extreme poverty.

Even the government statistical offices tell us that one of the major causes of poverty is immigration.

The immigrants coming from other neighbouring countries, namely Mexico, are ready to be paid less than the native people – hence the low-wage jobs are becoming increasingly rare and increasingly low-paid.

Then there is the huge military and security spending, which is 50% of the government’s discretionary spending. All this finally leads to what some sociologists have defined as the “culture of inequality”.

Indeed, the United States are alien to any social tradition of solidarity, which remains Protestantly withdrawn into the soul of the single individual.

Therefore populations are always segregated by income and race and, as already said, jobs are rare and underpaid, which generates mass crime and spreads the model of the “single parent family”.

Hence this is the starting design: the long progressive season in the United States; a political culture more interested in gay marriage than in mass poverty; a political language focused on the body and its “rights”; the pop culture as the axis of young people’s communication, education and training.

Young people have to be considered future consumers, not producers.

Conversely Donald Trump speaks, first and foremost, to the underprivileged masses, who are huge in the United States.

The Midwest region which voted for Trump, the Rust Belt of abandoned factories and endemic poverty of the former working class followed the Brexit example and voted for the New York’s tycoon.

All the universalistic political classes that remember what is useless and forget the new poverty will be wiped out.

In addition, and this still holds true at psycho-political level, Trump’s election campaign was specifically “male chauvinist and sexist”, without bending to the various current mythologies – as Barthes called them – which idealize and enhance the role of women and conversely make men an often unnecessary corollary.

Trump’s other chance of victory was Hillary Clinton herself.

She endangered the US ambassador to Libya, Stevens, who later died in an attack by Ansar al Sharia, by denying additional support to make the Benghazi’s offices safe. Not to mention the misuse of the Clinton Foundation, used as a bribe for those who wanted to talk to the Head of the State Department.

She was also blamed for the 15,000 e-mails on her personal server, as well as for her obviously not good health conditions and the aura of cynicism and truth denial shown in her political activities.

In short, only the naive Europeans, with their poor minds still tied to the myths of Kennedy’s “New Society”, could fund her publicly, being ill-informed of how the election campaign was going and later subjected to Trump’s revenge.

Let us not forget that, even during the election campaign, Hillary Clinton was focused on continuing to implement the tragic strategy of “bringing” democracy throughout the Middle East.

In fact, she had started the insurgency which unsuccessfully tried to oust   Bashar al-Assad from power in Syria.

Indeed, she used all the jihad delinquents, renamed – for the occasion – “moderate Islamists”.

Maybe those groups included also Ansar al Sharia, precisely the one which had assassinated Stevens and the others in Benghazi …

The jihadist fighters trained by CIA and the Department of State shot one another while, after the US training, some “moderate” jihadist groups went immediately to enlist and swell the Isis ranks.

The comedy of tragedy.

Reverting to the election campaign, it is not hard to guess that Bernie Sanders’ supporters voted for Hillary Clinton, but bringing not even an additional voter to the polls for supporting her.

However, what is President-elect Trump planning to do? He will most likely be the political leader putting an end to globalization, which was an Americanization and, hence, can only be stopped “at source.”

In more concrete terms, Trump said the united States should stop the great immigration from the South, namely from Mexico, which should pay for the now notorious “wall.”

Hence less immigration, less competition for “low-paid jobs” and wage increase in those sectors.

Trump, a politician from the Right, is the first candidate for the Presidency to talk about the poor during the election campaign.

This is not so strange. It was Bismarck, with the help of the Social Democrat Lassalle, to make insurance mandatory for workers.

Moreover, again in Trump’s mind, the Muslims coming from countries with a proven record of terrorism against the United States should be barred from entering the country.

However, are there Islamic countries not falling within this category?

Currently there are 3.3 million Muslims living in the United States.

An even smaller religious minority than Hindus and Sikhs in America.

Obviously Trump wants to avoid the quick expansion of this ethno-religious area, which the new President regards as a “fifth column” of all forms of Islamic insurgency.

This is another limit to globalization: one of its founding myths was everybody’s freedom to move everywhere to find good jobs, salvation and survival.

This was also a way to stabilize the Third World countries’ regimes which, thanks to emigration, got rid of their “dangerous masses.”

This is no longer the case in the United States.

Maybe the US stance and behaviour on these issues will encourage the countries recording strong migration flows to seal their borders permanently.

The issue of borders recurs everywhere – those borders which, according to Régis Debray, were the first motivation for a State.

Another issue raised in the election campaign, which will soon be implemented, is the end of “Obamacare”, the system of health insurance for the poor people that has also greatly irritated and vexed the US old and new Right.

In essence, “Obamacare” is the State support for purchasing health insurance, thus forbidding insurance companies from refusing to insure people for their past health conditions or economic status.

In the United States healthcare spending accounts for 10% of GDP, while in countries characterized by the Welfare State, such as Italy, it accounts for 9.2%.

The reason for all this is complex to explain, but one point is clear: it is a health system focused on doctors’ income.

Trump, however, believes that everyone should have health coverage, but not linked to the insurance market, which has other criteria than those of the healthcare system, because it only wants to make profit.

Nevertheless it is not yet clear how Trump wants to solve this problem in the future.

Furthermore the new President-elect believes that we should certainly set great store by clean air and water, but he thinks that “climate change” is a real hoax.

And to think that a former vice-President had made it the focus of his election campaign, fearing huge destruction which did not occur.

Certainly we must take care of the environment, but the scare-mongering campaign of “climate change” supporters has much to do with science fiction movies.

As to the global strategy, Trump has dared to challenge one of the most deeply-rooted common places in the US public, by saying that the world would be better if Saddam and Gaddafi were still in power.

They both fought terrorism better and made their countries stable; it was a US severe mistake to make them collapse.

This is an essential step: with Trump, America will cease to bring democracy everywhere, with the results that are before us to be seen.

Will it be a new isolationism? No, it will not.

It will be a new US position in the world, in close relation with China’s strong economic and political expansion, a more assertive Russia and an irrelevant Europe.

Not to mention the hot spots: Syria, North Korea and the whole Middle East.

Trump has already stated he is harshly opposed to the JCPOA Treaty on Iran’s nuclear power.

In his opinion, the 5 + 1 Treaty is a way to enrich Iran and not to really stop its nuclear weapons, thus making it continue to play its role as sponsor of international terrorism.

Certainly, as already discussed at length, the JCPOA Treaty has many chances to be circumvented and, in any case, it does not stop the Iranian race to nuclear weapons.

Trump has also stated he has a plan to eliminate Isis, but he has not delved into the issue during the election campaign.

Furthermore – and this is a sore spot for Europeans – Trump has dismissed NATO as “obsolete”.

In other words, the President-elect thinks that the primary axis of defence is not what unites Europe to America, but he believes that the United States should take autonomous and independent actions with regard to China, the Russian Federation and the other growing geopolitical powers.

Just to quote the witty remark of its first Secretary General, Lord Ismay, NATO had been created to “keep the Russians out, the Americans in and the Germans down”.

Today, this is no longer the case: the Germans are autonomous and often make foreign policy with the United States and not with the other EU Member States; the Russians are out but, despite the current NATO doctrine, they are not a deadly threat.

Now the new strategic potentials are elsewhere.

Hence if NATO is obsolete, we shall rethink the EU’s foreign policy, which will not have the automatic protection ensured by the Atlantic mechanism.

Therefore the EU shall rethink all its foreign and defence policy lines, including the most recent ones, and accept the fact that globalization, at least its first phase, is over.

The United States will play their game, regardless of Europeans liking it or not.

Moreover the European Union shall rethink its strategic role.

Shall it only be an economic union, with the euro that nobody wants any longer? It will soon fail because every political union has a strategic and military principle.

However, there will be a real European army, as some people hope after Brexit?

And who will dictate the strategies: the EU universalistic humanitarianism or other countries more aware of the new threats?

In short, with Trump, Europe is alone. It shall operate in a new world without the forms of protection which had arisen in the aftermath of World War II.

Advisory Board Co-chair Honoris Causa Professor Giancarlo Elia Valori is an eminent Italian economist and businessman. He holds prestigious academic distinctions and national orders. Mr. Valori has lectured on international affairs and economics at the world’s leading universities such as Peking University, the Hebrew University of Jerusalem and the Yeshiva University in New York. He currently chairs “International World Group”, he is also the honorary president of Huawei Italy, economic adviser to the Chinese giant HNA Group. In 1992 he was appointed Officier de la Légion d’Honneur de la République Francaise, with this motivation: “A man who can see across borders to understand the world” and in 2002 he received the title “Honorable” of the Académie des Sciences de l’Institut de France. “

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A self-inflicted wound: Trump surrenders the West’s moral high ground

Dr. James M. Dorsey

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For the better part of a century, the United States could claim the moral high ground despite allegations of hypocrisy because its policies continuously contradicted its proclaimed propagation of democracy and human rights. Under President Donald J. Trump, the US has lost that moral high ground.

This week’s US sanctioning of 28 Chinese government entities and companies for their involvement in China’s brutal clampdown on Turkic Muslims in its troubled north-western province of Xinjiang, the first such measure by any country since the crackdown began, is a case in point.

So is the imposition of visa restrictions on Chinese officials suspected of being involved in the detention and human rights abuses of millions of Uyghurs and other Turkic Muslims.

The irony is that the Trump administration has for the first time elevated human rights to a US foreign policy goal in export control policy despite its overall lack of concern for such rights.

The sanctions should put the Muslim world, always the first to ring the alarm bell when Muslims rights are trampled upon, on the spot.

It probably won’t even though Muslim nations are out on a limb, having remained conspicuously silent in a bid not to damage relations with China, and in some cases even having endorsed the Chinese campaign, the most frontal assault on Islam in recent history.

This week’s seeming endorsement by Mr. Trump of Turkey’s military offensive against Syrian Kurds, who backed by the United States, fought the Islamic State and were guarding its captured fighters and their families drove the final nail into the coffin of US moral claims.

The endorsement came on the back of Mr. Trump’s transactional approach towards foreign policy and relations with America’s allies, his hesitancy to respond robustly to last month’s missile and drone attacks on Saudi oil facilities, his refusal to ensure Saudi transparency on the killing a year ago of journalist Jamal Khashoggi and his perceived empathy for illiberals and authoritarians symbolized by his reference to Egyptian field marshal-turned-president Abdel Fattah al-Sisi as “my favourite dictator.”

Rejecting Saudi and Egyptian criticism of his intervention in Syria, Turkish president Recep Tayyip Erdogan gave the United States and Mr. Trump a blunt preview of what they can expect next time they come calling, whether it is for support of their holding China to account for its actions in Xinjiang, issues of religious freedom that are dear to the Trump administration’s heart, or specific infractions on human rights that the US opportunistically wishes to emphasize.

“Let me start with Saudi Arabia,” Mr. Erdogan said in blistering remarks to members of his Justice and Development Party (AKP). “Look in the mirror first. Who brought Yemen to this state? Did tens of thousands of people not die in Yemen?” he asked, referring to the kingdom’s disastrous military intervention in Yemen’s ruinous civil war.

Addressing Mr. Al-Sisi, Mr. Erdogan charged: “Egypt, you can’t talk at all. You are a country with a democracy killer.” The Turkish leader asserted that Mr. Al-Sisi had “held a meeting with some others and condemned the (Turkish) operation – so what if you do?”

The fact that the United States is likely to encounter similar responses, even if they are less belligerent in tone, as well as the fact that Mr. Trump’s sanctioning of Chinese entities is unlikely to shame the Muslim world into action, signals a far more fundamental paradigm shift:  the loss of the US and Western moral high ground that gave them an undisputed advantage in the battle of ideas, a key battleground in the struggle to shape a new world order.

China, Russia, Middle Eastern autocrats and other authoritarians and illiberals have no credible response to notions of personal and political freedom, human rights and the rule of law.

As a result, they countered the ideational appeal of greater freedoms by going through the motions. They often maintained or erected democratic facades and payed lip service to democratic concepts while cloaking their repression in terms employed by the West like the fight against terrorism.

By surrendering the West’s ideological edge, Mr. Trump reduced the shaping of the new world order to a competition in which the power with the deeper pockets had the upper hand.

Former US national security advisor John Bolton admitted as much when he identified in late 2018 Africa as a new battleground and unveiled a new strategy focused on commercial ties, counterterrorism, and better-targeted U.S. foreign aid.

Said international affairs scholar Keren Yarhi-Milo: “The United States has already paid a significant price for Trump’s behaviour: the president is no longer considered the ultimate voice on foreign policy. Foreign leaders are turning elsewhere to gauge American intentions… With Trump’s reputation compromised, the price tag on U.S. deterrence, coercion, and reassurance has risen, along with the probability of miscalculation and inadvertent escalation.”

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Trump’s effects on diplomacy

Irfan Khan

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No longer has Trump’s haphazard behaviour persisted, more will be easy for his administration to enact actions against China, Iran and Taliban. The state department is in a quandary because of it, on each front. Trump’s entrenched eagerness to remain “great” and “first” on the chessboard of International power, could damage the world more ahead than before.

Following the Iran’s attacks on the Kingdom of Saudi-Arabia’s oil infrastructure, US wanted to deploy troops to the Kingdom. It is primarily a justification for why the US has been imposing sanctions over Iran. Is troops deployment a solution? Or will it provide safe horizon to Kingdom oil’s installation? Or will it be revolutionary in oil diplomacy? Or is it the only target retaliated on, by Iran. However, such kind of engagement has short term beneficiary spots, while in broader perspective it has consequential effects for all stakeholders. The episode of nuclear deal has, as a factor of quid-pro-quo, been further dramatised by the state department, withdrawing from. Notwithstanding, the deal has advantageous prospects for the Middle East, and an exemplary for rest of nations, has been further dramatised by the US, in order to seek its diplomatic wins. What significant at this point, is an agreement to reback to the deal.

Embracing a different economic model, China, is plausibly on a runner-up position to the US. Whether it’s 5G tech. Or leading status of green energy, or ultra-scales exports or its leading developments for the nations having indigent economies, is a source of chaos for US administration. The current trade war is an antidoting tool for the whole scenario. The US should, I assume, eye China’s hegemony a piece of cake, and welcome its come out while securing its interests under the umbrella of cooperation. This logic, while posing no threat, seems to be long term functional. Is it?

Trump, according to many native writers, is psychologically unfit, unstable and fickle, however have had strong narrative to prevent America’s engagement into “useless wars” and end “endless” wars. Following this token, Trump announcement of troop withdrawal from Syria and Afghanistan put the world politics and even his administration into chaos. This divided strategists and Washington security officials, which was underpinned by the resignation of James Mattis and recently John Bolton. The ten months of peace process which followed the US’s announcement of troop withdrawal, precipitously ended, putting once again the international and national politics into chaos. Trump, grandiloquently fired a tweet that talks with Taliban are dead and futile. The argument he contended was the Attack in Kabil, where one American soldier with 12 other people were lost. The policymakers and high officials in Washington who already negated the policy of troop withdrawal and then after peace deal. They, of course are winner in this policy discourse, have staunch beliefs in their opinion, who may make Trump’s change of heart. The Kabil attack was given, probably, an agent of resurgent for Obama’s approach. However, Trump’s administration had already scripted their policy framework for the region, and pretending Kabul attack was perhaps a way of redemption from the peace talk.

Trump’s factor in US foreign policy was chaotic to his subordinates for which, he attempted to compensate by cancelling peace deal with Taliban. However , on the domestic front, it is likely to be more pluses than on diplomatic front given to Trump in next year’s presidential election. Let’s see which side the wind blow. 

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Trump Cannot Be Impeached Over Ukrainegate, But Pelosi and Schiff Can Be Charged Criminally

Rahul D. Manchanda, Esq.

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Pursuant to United States v. Curtiss-Wright Export Corp., 299 U.S. 304 (1936), the U.S. Supreme Court issued an unmistakable clear edict concerning the foreign affairs powers of the President of the United States.

In its majority opinion, the Court held that the President, as the nation’s “sole organ” in international relations, is innately vested with significant powers over foreign affairs, far exceeding the powers permitted in domestic matters or accorded to the U.S. Congress.

The Court reasoned that these powers are implicit in the President’s constitutional role as commander-in-chief and head of the executive branch.

Curtiss-Wright was the first decision to establish that the President’s plenary power was independent of Congressional permission, and consequently it is credited with providing the legal precedent for further expansions of executive power in the foreign sphere.

In a 7–1 decision authored by Justice George Sutherland, the Supreme Court ruled that the U.S. government, through the President, is categorically allowed great foreign affairs powers independent of the U.S. Constitution, by declaring that “the powers of the federal government in respect of foreign or external affairs and those in respect of domestic or internal affairs are different, both in respect of their origin and their nature…the broad statement that the federal government can exercise no powers except those specifically enumerated in the Constitution, and such implied powers as are necessary and proper to carry into effect the enumerated powers, is categorically true only in respect of our internal affairs.”

While the Constitution does not explicitly state that all ability to conduct foreign policy is vested in the President, the Court concluded that such power is nonetheless given implicitly, since the executive of a sovereign nation is, by its very nature, empowered to conduct foreign affairs.

The Court found “sufficient warrant for the broad discretion vested in the President to determine whether the enforcement of the statute will have a beneficial effect upon the reestablishment of peace in the affected countries.”

In other words, the President was better suited for determining which actions and policies best serve the nation’s interests abroad.

Period.

It is important to bear in mind that we are here dealing not alone with an authority vested in the President by an exertion of legislative power, but with such an authority plus the very delicate, plenary and exclusive power of the President as the sole organ of the federal government in the field of international relations – a power which does not require as a basis for its exercise an act of Congress, but which, of course, like every other governmental power, must be exercised in subordination to the applicable provisions of the Constitution.

Separation of Powers Doctrine

In other words, neither the U.S. Congress nor the U.S. Senate can say or do very much of anything to prevent or interfere with this power, and if they do, they can in fact be held responsible for violating the Separation of Powers doctrine pursuant to the U.S. Constitution wherein the three branches of government (executive, legislative, and judicial) are kept separate.

This is also known as the system of checks and balances, because each branch is given certain powers so as to check and balance the other branches.

Each branch has separate powers, and generally each branch is not allowed to exercise the powers of the other branches.

The Legislative Branch exercises congressional power, the Executive Branch exercises executive power, and the Judicial Branch exercises judicial review.

National Security and Foreign Affairs

The Curtiss-Wright case established the broader principle of executive Presidential supremacy in national security and foreign affairs, one of the reasons advanced in the 1950s for the near success of the attempt to add the Bricker Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, which would have placed a “check” on said Presidential power by Congress, but that never passed, or became law.

If Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi and other Democrats really wanted to interfere with or prevent President Donald Trump from engaging in the activity that they are trying to prevent vis-a-vis Ukraine, China, and Joseph Biden’s alleged corruption and its effect on National Security, they would have to first draft, propose, enact, and pass sweeping legislation, and this could take years and would most probably never pass.

Even so, it could not affect President Donald Trump’s actions already occurred, since the U.S. Constitution prohibits ex post facto criminal laws.

Turning This All Against Nancy Pelosi and Adam Schiff

To that end if Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi and Congressman Adam Schiff persist in pushing said “impeachment proceedings” against President Donald Trump, it is actually they who could find themselves on the wrong side of the law, with formal and actual charges of Treason, Sedition or Coup D’ Etat being levied upon them by the U.S. Government.

The consequences of that occurring, are truly horrific indeed.

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