PRAYER ALERT on Trump foreign policy question marks. US President-elect Donald Trump has considered at least ten candidates for the top diplomatic post of Secretary of State. The diversity of the candidates shows that Trump is open to many different approaches to international relations. They also raise many Trump foreign policy question marks. Will he stick to his campaign pledges on world affairs? Will he use his campaign pledges as bargaining points as he practices his famed “art of the deal”? Will he rely instead on one czar to answer all the Trump foreign policy question marks? Or will he let a team of rivals argue over the major decisions, then pick the winner each time?
At this point, Trump is listening to the rival candidates more than to the daily White House foreign policy briefings. Here are opposite ends of the candidates’ positions on key world issues:
Russia. 2012 Republican Presidential nominee Mitt Romney called Russia “without question our No. 1 geopolitical foe.” But the present top candidate for Secretary of State, Exxon Mobil CEO Rex Tillerson, has a long and friendly business relationship with Russia’s PM Vladimir Putin. He opposes sanctions against Russia, and even against Russia’s ally Iran, because he thinks them impractical and bad for business. Will the US work with Russia against common enemies, such as ISIS? Or will it treat Russia as an enemy, who only makes deals to break them and to advance her own territorial ambitions?
Iran. Before the notorious Iran nuclear deal, John Bolton, the former US Ambassador to the UN, argued that the best way to stop Iran’s nuclear weapons program was to bomb its facilities. Now Bolton says the US should dump the Iran deal. Trump promised to do so during his campaign. But Sen. John Corker calls for enforcing the deal. He advocates finding other ways to punish Iran, the world’s No. 1 state sponsor of terror.
China. Trump has charged China with manipulating currency to gain an unfair trade advantage over the US. To fears that such rhetoric could start a trade war, he replied that China is already waging a kind of trade war against the US. Trump recently questioned the long-standing “one China policy.” He accepted a congratulatory phone call from the president of Taiwan, which also claims that it is the one legitimate China.
John Huntsman, a former ambassador to China, downplayed the call. He warned that a trade war with China could backfire on American workers. But Rep. Dana Rohrabacher, CA, praised the call. He wants the US to confront China not only on trade, but on its territorial expansion in the South and East China Seas. Such aggression may limit the free international trade that other nations bordering those seas now enjoy…
DailyInsight. “Divide and conquer” must be followed by “unite and govern”, or enemies will conquer the divisions (see 2 Sam. 19-20).
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