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Friday, May 11, 2018

Trump's high-risk doctrine? Swing for the bleacher seats


From Fox News:
WASHINGTON – The way President Donald Trump sees it, why go for a solid single when you can swing for a home run? Trump's upcoming summit with North Korea's Kim Jong Un is only the latest example of the president's go-big strategy. 
From tax reform to international trade to foreign policy, Trump has pursued a high-risk, high-reward approach that advisers say can help produce results on longstanding problems — and that critics warn could trigger dangerous repercussions all the way from a trade war to global conflict. 
Drawn to big moments and bigger headlines, Trump views the North Korea summit as a legacy-maker for him, believing that the combustible combination of his bombast and charm already has led to warmer relations between North and South. 
As he welcomed home three Americans who had been detained in North Korea, Trump early Thursday used a televised, middle-of-the-night ceremony to play up both his statecraft and stagecraft. 
"I think you probably broke the all-time, in history, television rating for three o'clock in the morning," Trump told reporters on the tarmac at Joint Base Andrews. 
Trump has also played the disruptor's role in recent weeks and months by withdrawing the U.S. from the Iran nuclear deal, imposing sweeping tariffs on allies and announcing he's moving the U.S. embassy in Israel to Jerusalem, which is claimed by both Israelis and Palestinians.
From Instapundit:
For Trump, the End of the Beginning. The president and his new secretary of state, Mike Pompeo, were undoubtedly emboldened to flout the conventional wisdom of Foggy Bottom and its amen chorus in the press corps by their success (caveat: so far) in handling North Korea. 
Just a few months ago, the usual worrywarts and chin-pullers were fretting that the madman in Washington was about to provoke the only slightly less mad Kim Jong-un into a nuclear exchange in the international equivalent of a dick-measuring contest. 
Meanwhile, the same Wise Men were thrilled with the “success” of their beloved Obama’s giveaways to the mullahs in Tehran. 
And then, suddenly, there was Li’l Kim in South Korea; after nearly 70 years of a state of war between the two Koreas, talk of peace—if not actual reunification—is in the air… 
So the end of the Iran deal will have ramifications and repercussions far beyond this nation’s dealings with Iran itself. 
Certainly, the excitable Iranians must now understand their bluff has been called, there will be no further rollovers from Uncle Sam, and that their long-accruing butcher’s bill, outstanding since 1979, is now due and payable. 
The Iranian regime is on shaky ground, its youthful population restive, and it might well have fallen during the Obama Administration had we supported the Green Revolution with just the slightest gesture. The abrogation of the “deal” will now doom them, irrevocably. 
The past two weeks might eventually go down as the most consequential in American diplomacy since Ronald Reagan’s “failed” 1986 Reykjavik summit with Mikhail Gorbachev, which more than any other single event set the stage for peaceful victory in the Cold War.
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