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Rajan Menon: The China Missile Crisis of 2018?

Consider it an irony or simply a reality of our moment, but these days Donald (“America First”) Trump is looking ever less like an old-fashioned, pre-World War II isolationist. In a mere three-plus weeks in office, he’s managed to mix it up royally with much of the rest of the planet. He threatened to send American troops into Mexico (hey, it was a joke, just lighthearted banter!); he insulted the Prime Minister of Australia by shouting at and hanging up on him (“fatigue was setting in” and anyway maybe he thought it was Austria!); he threatened Iran with everything but the kitchen sink (which he evidently couldn’t find in the new, under-inhabited White House); he insulted Iraq by banning its citizens from visiting the land that had invaded and occupied them and essentially dynamited their country; he insulted German Prime Minister Angela Merkel for her handling of the refugee crisis and may still be playing with the idea of appointing an ambassador to the European Union who would like to see it go the way of the old Soviet Union. He put in place the Muslim ban that wasn’t a ban on immigrants and visitors from seven largely Muslim lands — before an obviously Islam-loving so-called judge in San Francisco (natch!) temporarily banned it. After being played like a fiddle by military officials who told him that President Obama would never have had the guts to order such a raid — great presidential button-pushing, guys! — he green-lighted a disastrous Special Operations mission in Yemen in which the raiders didn’t get their guy (but did get a long available terror video), while one American and up to 30 civilians, including children, died. (The Yemeni government, possibly also angered by being put on Trump’s list of banned countries, has now banned such raids in its country, or not.) And to give Trump total credit, he staunchly defended the honor of the American people, as he had always promised he would. When Bill O’Reilly, in a pre-Super Bowl interview, called Russian President Vladimir Putin a “killer” without offering a single kind, offsetting word of praise for the United States, the president promptly insisted that the Russians had no monopoly on killers in high places, not on an America First planet. He shot back: “There are a lot of killers. You think our country’s so innocent?” Exactly, Donald. We kill with the best of them!

According to recent research by the Global Impact Institute (GII), in his first 21 days in office, President Trump only missed messing with 13 of the 190-plus nations on the planet, an oversight he’s undoubtedly planning to rectify in week four. (Okay, okay, the GII only operates inside my brain, but take my word for it, it’s no less accurate for that.) And the president has obviously been saving the best for last, despite a recent molifying gesture. I’m talking, of course, about that ominously rising power, China. No other country offers such a mix-it-up opportunity for global economic chaos, outright war, and future Armageddon. But let TomDispatch regular Rajan Menon, author of The Conceit of Humanitarian Intervention, fill in the details on a country that gives Trump the chance to replay a reel of best of John F. Kennedy moments from the Bay of Pigs to the Cuban Missile Crisis — and believe you me, if Donald Trump had been there, Cuba might not have been.

(Reprinted from TomDispatch by permission of author or representative)
 
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  1. I’m not afraid of China. Anybody here afraid of China?

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    • Replies: @Astuteobservor II
    I am afraid of a nuclear war, and china got 250 nukes. other wise no. :P we can glass entire china in exchange for losing both coasts and radioactive water sources. worth it?
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  2. America First isolationists didn’t want to fight a war to make (((Bolshevism))) safe, making them such deplorable folk.

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  3. @WorkingClass
    I'm not afraid of China. Anybody here afraid of China?

    I am afraid of a nuclear war, and china got 250 nukes. other wise no. :P we can glass entire china in exchange for losing both coasts and radioactive water sources. worth it?

    Read More
  4. Anonymous says:     Show CommentNext New Comment
    @WorkingClass
    I'm not afraid of China. Anybody here afraid of China?

    Said from his mom’s basement over the internet.

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  5. It’s easy to be distracted, but here’s what really matters.

    Trump reduces tensions with Russia. He presses on Iran but triggers no war, and avoids a crisis with China. That is good enough.

    EVERYTHING ELSE is useless. Just empty noise.

    Most nations should be left alone. ISIS and terrorists spread all over the Middle East because of US meddling in cahoots with nasty Saudis and idiot Turks. US sent wrong signals… such as it would take out Assad. Turkey and Saudi Arabia wanted to get ahead of the US by aiding anti-Assad forces in Syria who would be closer to Ankara and Riyadh once Assad fell. But the US just had Muslims fighting Muslims.

    What Trump needs to do is work with Russia to stabilize Syria. And he should work with Iraqis to beat terrorists in Iraq. Once that is secure, there isn’t much else to do. Indeed, that area would be mostly peaceful if not for Bush-Obama era policies.

    As for people like Merkel, who cares if Trump insults them. They are turncoat scum puppets of globalism. They deserve nothing but derision and contempt.
    Besides, EU leaders are such dogs that they have no use to the US.

    Also, there is no need for US to even engage in the EU since the Cold War is over, and there is no Soviet threat. If anything, the threat is from the Third World but that wretched bitch Merkel opened the gates. Also, why should Trump respect them when they did everything to damage and insult Trump?

    Anyway, it doesn’t matter what Trump does with most nations. They are inconsequential to the world, and all nations would be better if they just minded their own business. Nations should trade in goods and ideas, not peoples. And they should shore up their national sovereignty, not always look to Washington to solve everything.

    The only big issues for Trump is Russia, Iran, and China. He should make peace with Russia, and avoid conflict with Iran and China.
    And then, he will do fine in world affairs.

    As for some spats he may have with world leaders, who cares? They are bunch of whores and bitches anyway looking for a handout

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