For those of us who saw the psychopathic Mrs Clinton as a gigantic threat to world peace, hearing Donald Trump speaking about “getting along with Russia”, as opposed to wanting to go to war with it, was really rather refreshing and even cause for a faint glimmer of hope that the US might actually be about to abandon its messianic claims over the whole world and settle down to being a proper country that minds its own business.
To be fair, there were some early indications that this might actually happen. Here’s the Donald at his inauguration:
“We will seek friendship and goodwill with the nations of the world — but we do so with the understanding that it is the right of all nations to put their own interests first.”
“We do not seek to impose our way of life on anyone, but rather to let it shine as an example for everyone to follow.”
Say what? I’m having heart palpitations now Donald. You mean you renounce your “exceptional” and “indispensable” right to impose regime change, coup d’etats, invasions and bombings on any country that doesn’t play ball? Are you sure you can get that past your handlers, Donald?
Not only this, but he went on to have what sounds like a civilised conversation with the President of Russia. It wasn’t even hard, by the sound of it. All he did was stop himself from lecturing and haranguing his opposite number like a schoolmaster telling off a naughty schoolboy. As I say, not hard, but unfortunately his predecessor never quite mastered it.
And so for a few precious hours, to those of us who don’t much like the idea of endless, pointless conflict, things were truly looking up. But then just as quickly as our balloon went up, it quickly came back down to earth, as Mr Trump and his handlers seem to have realised that mending ties with Russia would mean that America would be deprived of an enemy, something which must never be allowed to happen.
And so step forward General Michael Flynn, the National Security Advisor, to announce to the American people that it’s all okay. You can relax. We aren’t abandoning our policy of making enemies thousands of miles away in countries that you can’t find on a map. We’ve just chosen another country to vex yourselves over. Step forward Iran:
“As of today, we are officially putting Iran on notice.”
Notice of what he didn’t say. Nor did he say why. The best guesses have been that it was all to do with the Houthis in Yemen, who may or may not be backed by Iran, attacking a Saudi frigate. And even though it was the Saudis that started that war, and who have been bombing Yemen relentlessly for nearly two years, it was apparently considered most unsporting of the Houthis to hit back. Then there was the missile test conducted by Iran. Although the type of missile tested in no way contravened last year’s nuclear deal, apparently team Trump has decided they’re not allowed to do it anyway. So there!
And then the new Secretary of State for Defence, James Mattis, weighed in.
“As far as Iran goes, this is the single biggest state sponsor of terrorism in the world. I think it is wise to make certain that Iran recognizes that what it is doing is getting the attention of a lot of people.”
So not that country that had 15 of its nationals on the planes that were used to kill thousands of people in America on September 11th, 2001? Not that country which has funded, supported and armed fanatical Wahhabi terrorists and sent them to destroy Libya and Syria for the last few years? No, not them. They’re America’s special friend and they didn’t even make it onto the travel ban.
Oh, and of course there was Rex Tillerson’s remarks on January 11th, which suggested that just in case Iran isn’t considered a big enough enemy for US politicians and media to get righteously vexed about, there’s always China. He said that the US would:
“…send China a clear signal that, first, the island-building stops, and second, your access to those islands also is not going to be allowed.”
So, different administration and different countries, but same old same old!
Now here’s the question. Although there appears to be no consistency between the “we want to get along with everyone” approach and the “you better do what we say or else” approach, is there any rhyme or reason in it all? Actually there is, and here on TheBlogMire I can reveal exclusively how it is done. What happens is this:
Mr Trump gets on the phone to Tulsi Gabbard, Dana Rohrabacher and Ron Paul, and asks them what they think he should do. Then he gets on the phone to Marco Rubio, Lindsey Graham and John McCain, and asks them what they think he should do. Then he writes down their suggestions, puts them in a hat, and draws one of them out. This then becomes the foreign policy for today.
Now you might think this is a crazy way to run foreign policy. And it is. But there is much to be grateful about too. Just be thankful that he hasn’t yet picked out John McCain’s suggestion to “Nuke Moscow”.