On June 1, Donald Trump announced that, by his withdrawal from the Paris Accord, he was resigning as Leader of the Free World. At the same time, Trump indicated that, pending the conclusion of investigations in Congress and by the Special Counsel, he will retain his position as President of the United States. The designation[…]
The New York Times on December 2 carried yet another story of Republican leadership fretting about Donald Trump, “Wary of Donald Trump, G.O.P. Leaders Are Caught in a Standoff.” The article quoted among others, Senator Lindsey Graham on the effect of a Trump nomination. As a candidate himself, and one who is trailing Trump by a wide margin in the polls, Graham is not exactly a disinterested observer. Yet his succinct precis bears repeating:
“It would be an utter, complete and total disaster,” Senator Lindsey Graham of South Carolina, himself a presidential candidate who has tangled with Mr. Trump, said of his rival’s effect on lower-tier Republican candidates. “If you’re a xenophobic, race-baiting, religious bigot, you’re going to have a hard time being president of the United States, and you’re going to do irreparable damage to the party.”
Part II. Ukraine and the Search for a Strategy
Back on June 4, we posted Part I, “The Islamic State and the Search for a Strategy” and promised that Part II would deal with Ukraine and Eastern Europe. After a somewhat longer interval than anticipated, we turn now to Part II. As it happens, little appears to have changed with respect to Ukraine and Eastern Europe since our previous post. Ukraine, and more broadly Eastern Europe, seems to have slid largely out of political and public consciousness. Yet that part of the world continues, in our view, to represent a highly dangerous situation that is almost certain to appear as a new crisis at some point. […]
A period of relative calm had pushed Ukraine out of the center of media and public attention for a brief time when President Petro Poroshenko addressed Congress on September 18. It is, however, a situation that we dare not lose sight of for very long. President Poroshenko gave an eloquent speech that drew several standing ovations. He may be Ukraine’s most important single asset: a leader of vision, courage and pragmatism. While it is doubtful that Ukraine will receive the weaponry that he seeks, Poroshenko gave the impression that he will find a way for Ukraine to survive. […]
Despite the continuing indignities of airline transportation, modern travel abroad does offer one compensation. It is no longer necessary to scurry about looking for an International Herald Tribune in order to learn what’s going on back home and around the world. Wi-Fi is ubiquitous and even American televised news is available in the better hotels. So it was not difficult from afar to follow the apparent train wreck of our government’s ever-changing positions as to Syria. And it was interesting to do so while traveling in territory – from Istanbul to Athens – that had been the scene of endless conflicts, and the rise and fall of various civilizations, for over three millenia. Those surroundings were a sad reminder that improvements in technology, including the technology of killing, have far outstripped improvements in the human skill of conflict resolution.