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Is Trump Foreign Policy Designed Backwards to Disrupt the Empire?

Politics / US Politics May 06, 2019 - 08:56 AM GMT

By: Stephen_Merrill

Politics According to US conservatives, Donald Trump’s MAGA has served to sharpen the bristles of US foreign policy reigning in the competing global powers with sanctions and far reaching power-plays in trade and weaponry, way beyond Obama and even Clinton.

Even the death zombie Dems have to applaud Trump at times, when he bombs Syria on fake news or sanctions Russia even more or tries to overthrow the Venezuelan government with gangster tactics.  The billionaires’ media finally finds its President then.

So, the self-serving assessment in Washington is that Trump the Terrible has been successfully compromised into fully supporting Empire games of endless war and chaos, just like his recent predecessors.  The conclusion becomes there is simply is no resisting the US intelligence agencies that are the spearpoint for Congress’ faithful alliance with the Merchants of Death, 1tr a year and vastly growing.

The assessment of MAGA in foreign capitals is little different.  The reaction is one of complete alarm though, as the Psycho Empire seems to be building toward truly catastrophic war.
Intellectuals from the West and the East conclude that Trump is a policy neophyte who resembles a bull in a china shop.  There is no rhythm or reason to US policy, simply a series of inconsistent, impulsive counter-reactions.  While Putin plays 3-D chess, Trump plays checkers instead, quite badly too.  While China’s Xi colonizes Asia and Africa economically, the US bangs its head against every wall it can find.

Or, could there instead be an effective method tied to Trump’s madness, as some Kremlin journalists have speculated?  Is up truly down with Trump foreign policy and appearances the opposite of the true Trump policy aims? 

An Impossible Mission

Donald Trump is the politician who has promised to bring down the corrupt Washington DC status quo, thereby energizing the nation for old-time middle-class prosperity again. 
When the promises were made the world knew that Trump would never be elected President, including Trump.  So, talk was cheap then.  And controversy over Trump exploding the Republican dogma so dominated media attention for the novice candidate.
Then the national revulsion by voters inspired by the Hillary Clinton campaign landed Trump in the Oval Office, quite impossibly.
On the Trump chopping block during the 2016 campaign was global war-making, along with his border wall.   Faced now with doing the job that was promised, Trump was in a corner in foreign policy and surrounded by enemies, many open, many clandestine.
This Trump revolution away from blind Empire is to be accomplished, essentially, all by himself, working with the establishment “leaders” already in place in Congress, the executive bureaucracy and beyond. 
Far more experienced Presidents with far more allies, like Kennedy and Nixon, found their less ambitious global plans destroyed by the Washington insiders.  What chance could the television celebrity businessman have in accomplishing such a nearly impossible task?  None, seemingly.  Surrender was best for Trump then.

Was the reversal in Trump rhetoric and policy pronouncements truly a surrender though? 
Could Trump’s selection of high-level foreign policy officials be both a cover story for the media and voters and a Fifth Column for neocons?

Can seeming to stir war actually lead to greater peace?

A Stark Choice to Make

Now, had Trump, once in office, appointed Ron Paul as his new Fed Chairman and Tulsi Gabbard as his Secretary of State instead of appointing the usual Republican faces, what would have happened?
One thing would be certain, a full-scale political war with all elements of the American elite from the C-Suites to Wall Street to the intelligence agencies to the Pentagon to almost all of Congress would have erupted in full view, the knives stabbing Trump and his new minions from all sides, the media leading the charge.  Trump would have had zero billionaires with him with him in that corner.

Well, what about compromise, meeting in the middle?  That was not an option for Trump with this array of opponents.  It was a death match from the outset.
Such a grand power struggle in such a very high place, with people like Trump’s opponents, always includes the danger of sudden liquidation, real or just threatened.  Few lives are more at risk than the life of this President since his election.  His successor in office would be an ideal replacement from the Resistance point-of-view. 
So, survival quickly became the game for Trump for obvious reasons. 

Trump’s first appointment that provoked hysteria from the Swamp, General Michael Flynn as the Director of National Intelligence, went down in flames in weeks, tricked by Mueller into making inaccurate statements to his bloodhounds.

Trump’s first attorney general, the man in Washington he most trusted, tossed Trump to the wolves at the first opportunity he had.  Jeff Sessions then muzzled any chance of bringing justice to the Clinton mafia.  Yet, Jeff Sessions was also a target of Trump’s most dangerous opponents.

So, what is a President to do?

Well, bomb Syria for no reason at all and later threaten to invade Venezuela for no reason.  Triple down on drone killings.

Increase “defense spending” by 10% into a Pentagon that admits losing track of trillions of dollars all of the time.  Sell $100m F-35s to allies the Pentagon knows cannot compete in combat.

Repeatedly threaten to incinerate North Korea in an unprovoked nuclear strike.  When peace encroaches anyway, make new demands that blow away any chance of success.

Appoint Goldman Sachs acolytes as the guarantors of trillions of debt welfare and rigged financial markets for the rich forever. 

Provoke China with tariffs and military maneuvers while arresting a top China executive for helping Iran. 

Appoint Iraq concentration camp commander H.R. McMaster as DIA to lie about everything, especially Russia.  When McMaster proves insufficiently unhinged when it comes to aggressive war with Iran, then replace him with the real war monster, the globally despised John Bolton.
Return Middle Eastern geopolitics to the days of the Crusades, this time led by absurd commander Michael Pompeo as Secretary of State playing the death arrow for Bibi’s Israel and for the Wahabbi King.   This Kansan Warrior for Christ knows the benighted US and Israel are on the edge or winning the Battle of Armageddon.  God sent Trump and Pompeo and Bolton to destroy all of the nonbelievers and heretics creating a new world ruled by Western sociopath neocons.
The American public just eats this up, especially the Resistance that feels it is already winning on the policy front.  Why should the Pentagon and Wall Street, fatter than ever, have any complaints about Trump now?

But it is the reaction of the rest of the world that matters the most when it comes to multiplying rabid Empire dictates.

When it comes to US strategic policy, Trump realizes in a world of hypersonic missiles and a global belt and road the US must end policing the land and sea with military might, while little booty is left to gain.  The money burden is enormous with no end.  Unsustainable finances do implode someday.

Forcibly Freeing Europe Again

The best example of the Destroying the Deal Strategy lies with America’s best allies of all, Western Europe.

Now, Europe, especially France, has always had its complaints about the US dominating its foreign policy and national security.  While repressing Europe’s nations with the EU monster, the bigger players pretend to be NATO partners instead of Empire supplicants.

This is not mostly due to a lack of courage.  The overall bargain with the US is so sweet and now so needed by Europe.
When the global bully you strongly favor offers to provide for your national defense against the global bully you fear the most, at little cost to you, that is attractive since you need the insurance anyway.

One can deal with a little war propagandizing for a friend who is so, so generous, even, technically speaking, accepting military occupation.  Then there is the mass surveillance also which is a bit much.

But when that same friend, with its new “free trade” policies, give the US consumer market away in exchange for penetrating Europe with US banking and big business, that is also mega-billions of dollars for almost nothing.  The new jobs created will be in Europe.

For such a friend, one can tolerate the evil lies of Bill Clinton and even the war crimes of Bush and Obama, since it is a crunch for the Empire right now, Putin and all.

But when it comes to Trumpian demands that Europe double NATO payments and also give up the fixed trade markets with the US, just about everything is being ruined.  And Trump’s crude bellicosity so adds to Europe’s anger and blowback.

Add to this pressure on Europe, Trump walking away from the Iran accord and then sanctioning European companies with trade and development ties with Russia or Iran.  Also, demanding Europe end it vast trade with Russia with the Europeans taking most of the resulting trade losses.

As a final outrage, Trump pulls out of the INF Treaty with Russia that prevents deployment by Russia of nuclear forces directed at European cities.  Trump’s hope is to use launch sites close to Russia as a first nuclear strike capacity, the Europeans be damned.  To make things unmistakable here, Trump also sends high-grade offensive weapons to the Ukraine military.

So, look at Trump’s dividends so far from his Europe/NATO policy.

1. Merkel and Macron are planning a European army presumably to replace NATO.

2. Italy and Greece are signing onto China’s global Belt and Road Initiative.

3. A trade mechanism with Iran and beyond was created specifically to evade US sanctions policy.

4.  Not even Empire patsy Great Britain seems much willing any longer to engage in black ops with CIA and Al Qaeda types, let alone new wars.  Britain and France are quietly making peace with Syria’s Assad.
5.  The EU has all but dropped out of the Ukraine play that is employing real Neo-Nazis.  Defeated Empire puppet President Poroshenko was able to buy only 27% of the national vote in the Ukraine election.

So, it does seem in Europe that one US President, acting alone and in disguise with unwitting neocons, has accomplished the seeming impossible, something that neither side of the Atlantic would have contemplated or tolerated before Trump.  Europe is now thirsting to leave NATO.  No one in Washington is making them stay.

While, at the same time, Trump at home has more than half of the electorate convinced that he is the greatest Emperor for the West since at least Ronald Reagan.  All while saying hardly a word about global peace and US military retrenchment.

In another region of the globe the Trump story is largely the same.

Poking Two Tigers and a Bear in Asia
It must be said that pairing Trump and North Korea’s  Kim Jong Un as a visual comedy routine has been a masterful show for the orange reality-tv star and his Asian sidekick with the even crazier looking hairdo.  The war threats blasted by the two escalate beyond the surreal, even at the UN.

Then the two make nice to one another in a personal meeting and later love tweets swearing eternal friendship.  That is till John Bolton bursts into the room firing missile rounds from his mega-mustache in all directions. 

What scene could better undermine the vision of a powerful Empire than these three marionettes wildly throwing punches and then kissing like nothing happened?

But everyone knows that the North Korea war script is just a cover story.  The actual Empire play has been to confront the east coast of China with missiles and armies intended to keep it in its place.  Kim Jong Un is just the official US bogeyman, with impressive mass murder credentials of his own.  Kim’s missile threat is the only reason South Korea and Japan are forced to dance to Trump’s tune.

That terrible man Putin has such a big country, it even borders on North Korea, placing Russia also in the middle of the Korea spectacle.  So, those US missiles in Japan and South Korea also keep that mad KGB chess player in line.  The California coast would be a long way away from a limited nuclear war in Asia.

Trump does not berate South Korea to pay for its own defense, like he lectures Europe.  There simply are not enough South Koreans to meaningfully pay for the Pentagon’s outsized role in Asia.
There is also a legal blockade obstructing the Empire from forcing Japan to pay for most of the militarism in Asia.  Sadly for Trump, Japan’s emperor was forced to outlaw high military spending after Japan’s army devastated Asia in WWII.  The Japanese understandably hide behind this official passivist policy to ward off the usual expenses of supplicants to the Empire.

There is no one to pay then in Asia but Trump?  That is unacceptable. But, a voluntary pullout in Korea and Japan due to peace negotiations would end in Trump’s impeachment somehow.  Yet, peace in Korea along with disarmament implies US forces will be leaving.  Nothing measurably less could ever do.
So, peace in Korea is impossible for Trump as an achievable policy goal.  But peace is every other interested nations’ goal, especially the two Koreas.  Peace is also the only way to get out from under the massive US spending in East Asia, therefore quite a conundrum for Trump.

So, time for the US Navy to do a lot more in this situation with China.  Maybe the China tiger can be tamed better and more directly by breaking up the island party in the South China Sea.  Maybe Taiwan would be an easier military platform for the Pentagon.

And may as well blow up that promising peace negotiation with North Korea since the US War Party will never voluntarily allow for its end-result.  Bolton is the perfect tool for this.  Then the two Koreas can make their peace deal largely on their own without an impossible participant at the peace table to deal with.

So, just let the hugs and kisses between the two Koreas go along their natural path and see what happens.  If peace does break out some way, it will not be because of Trump’s concessions.  There is not much the US can do when a peace agreement is signed in Korea and our troops and missiles are ordered to leave South Korea and then later Japan.

So, that leaves only the Middle East powder keg from the Obama disaster years as a Trump policy rework.  Trump misdirection is not the method in play there.

On the Bibi-MBS Train
Often accused of being soulless when it comes to philosophical principles, there is clearly one principle that Trump is fully wedded to, the billions of Sheldon Adelson gambling money that will pay for just about anything in exchange for empowering Israel militarily and diplomatically.  Recall that Trump’s grandfather began the family fortune with casinos and bordellos in gold-rush Alaska.

Trump’s son-in-law Jared Kushner is equally within the bandwidth of Adelson and Netanyahu.
Add to one highly toxic Middle East partner the most toxic partner on Earth.  The effective Wahabbi King, Crown Prince MBS, is nothing if not obvious about the murder and mayhem he spreads across the Middle East paired with attempted grand theft from other nations.  The House of Saud rules absolutely, legally owning the people and land of Saudi Arabia, as the country’s name implies.

MBS finds himself a top favorite of his pal Jared and Bibi largely because he is the only Arab leader gladly willing to approve the Sunni Palestinians living forever in Bibi’s apartheid concentration camps.  Jared’s upcoming Middle East peace plan ensures the Palestinians will have no home of their own and no rights to speak of.  And no chance of going to Saudi Arabia.

Diplomatically, Trump has done everything for Bibi short of legally liquidating the Gaza Strip.  Declaring all of Jerusalem and the Golan Heights to be exclusively a part of Israel now rewards military aggression with no basis in international law.
The biggest favor for MBS Trump is supplying is providing all of the advanced weaponry he can possibly dream of, including secret, never authorized nuclear warheads that obviously violate the Non-Proliferation Pact.  There is also Trump’s willingness to help starve and bomb Yemen into submission on behalf of MBS.

But Trump has run into another impossibility when it comes to pushing another MBS regional aggression, against the tiny, but hugely wealthy Sultanate of Qatar.

Despite Trump’s implicit support, MBS’s plot to isolate and intimidate Qatar ended very very badly.  Not only was the Saudi economic blockade turned into a joke quickly, Qatar became so angry they left MBS and the UAE in the dust, opting to align now militarily and diplomatically with Iran and Turkey and even Syria.  Assad told Qatar they can still have a slice of the pipeline to Europe that the jihadist attack on Syria was largely about.

The global tweeter Trump has been unable to say a thing about this new Qatar alliance with hated Iran.  How can that be?  Because Qatar threatens to order the US fleet out of their sole large base along the Persian Gulf.  Without the use of the port near Doha, the US would be vastly diminished in its ability to project intimidating power in the Middle East.

So, MBS is dealing with the knowledge that the dismemberment of Saudi Arabia is now the prime geopolitical goal of his largest neighbors in the Gulf, that are acting in concert, and there is zero Trump can or will do about it, when it comes to the smaller key player Qatar.  It is not known yet what MBS’s reaction will be, but it will become clear rather soon.  He is very hot-tempered.  Contrary to legend though, MBS can never dump USD for oil sales without sealing his own fate too.
Remember, Adelson only cares so much about MBS, even Bibi’s thought, too.
The Trump strategy here seems necessary, since the only straight play for Trump to bail out MBS would be to attack Iran and take out the mullahs for good.  That is not going to happen though despite Bolton and Pompeo, not even Bibi is willing to risk it
First, what if Russia and/or China stepped up for Iran?  Risk Armageddon for MBS?   Never.
What if Turkey defends their new partners Qatar and Iran in a major way?  Is the US to bomb and invade its NATO ally, too?  Throw Iraq into that same mix, our erstwhile enemy turned reluctant ally, that is 60% Shia.

Even if the war opposition is limited to Iran Syria and Hezbollah, lots of US and Israeli planes will be shot down and many missiles will strike Israel, including large warheads this time.  The myth of Empire military superiority will be finally shattered, the iron dome exposed, the F-35 in ashes across the region, US Navy sinks sunk.

So how does Trump play his chaotic losing hand in the Middle East? Different from the misdirection method in Europe and Asia, relying much more on chaos and regime change by other means.

First, strangle Iran into submission ending its oil exports and destroying its currency.  This will show MBS how a blockade can work.  Fund and arm the radical opposition in Iran.

Find a way to be rid of Turkey’s Sultan Erdogan.  Obama’s coup did not work, now it is time for Trump to do things better somehow.

Spread out the remaining ISIS and Al Qaeda fighters to threatening Russia and China, after taking their gold, or rather the gold of Syria and Iraq.

Qatar is a small place.  It could not defeat a large invasion, except maybe one from the corrupt, incompetent Saudi “military” alone.  The Kurds cannot do it.  Who else is available?  More Ethiopian mercenaries?  Just need about 10,000 good fighters, but that is hard to come by in that region without rehiring ISIS.  This Qatar war has to be over in about a week.

Continue to illegally occupy two areas in Syria as a haven for jihadists and as a military platform in war.  Obstruct peace and reconstruction in Syria in every way.  Never think of the inevitable payback from Assad.

Let MBS keep his free hand in Yemen.  For however long he lasts on the throne.

Arm Israel to the teeth, even if the missiles and jet fighters are not much effective.  These systems simply must be viewed by the world as working in order to provide a good deterrent anyway and sustain sales.

Hope that somehow Iran’s Ayatollah and Turkey’s Sultan are removed from the inside.

Yes, Trumpism in the Middle East is a hodgepodge of empty dreams and futile strategies.  Trump here is not intentionally making the Empire’s position much worse to enable withdrawal, as he might be elsewhere.   But he cannot help himself it appears. Israel First policy seems to require it, if it is Bibi in power.

This work will not delve into the audacious Trump imperialism in Latin America since it is not much different from Teddy’s gunboat diplomacy and Kissinger’s assassination plots.

A Multi-Polar World
By definition, big geopolitical events in one region are part of the larger tapestry that shapes the world.  Trumpism fighting the rise of China is dictating policy in Europe in large part.  What happens in the Middle East will impact the rivalries and victories in Europe and Asia.

The need for the US to withdraw from military commitments and wars across the world will have its way over time.  The world no longer accepts US global military domination and its consequences.  The slow fall of USD ensures the military empire will collapse one day, little profit now left to draw on.  Far better to withdraw with order and some degree of grace than to allow the whole system to just blow up one day, even short of war between the great powers.
Trumpism in Europe has likely been driven by the US bipartisan Russophobia Carnival that has finally crashed of its own emptiness.  Now freed, Trump has a huge choice to make in Europe.
Is Europe to be bludgeoned into refusing globalization of the Eastern kind?  Must the Mackinder heartland theory of keeping Eurasia divided trump all?  Can even the greatest nation hold back the rush of time and peoples in the 21st Century?

Or, instead, is the United States, to begin to accept its role as only one of a number of great nations that will be shaping the coming world together, hopefully in peace.

The latter choice could make Donald Trump the greatest Empire leader America has ever had, allowing the nation to return to its natural place as the finest example of a free and prosperous nation respecting the sovereignty of other nations.
Though Trump would then certainly also suffer the slings and arrows from those still in power who have so failed the nation.  They will try to make Trump into America’s Gorbachev.

Even a US President cannot change a world that is transforming into a new order.  Trump is seemingly doing his best given his world view.
Even with his duplicitous ways as the central means so far while navigating US politics, Donald Trump has managed to steer the nation into the geopolitical reckoning the world has been hurtling toward, with some prospect for a far better world.

Mr. Merrill, a practicing Alaska attorney, served in the Navy Judge Advocate General’s Corps and as a Navy Reserve Intelligence Officer.
Mr. Merrill is the editor of the Alaska Freedom News, formerly the Hampton Roads Freedom News.

Follow Him on Twitter, StephenMerrill@StephenMerrillAk

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