Is Rex Tillerson Engaging in Direct Action on North Korea?

This administration and its president have been compared to every populist and fascist that ever strutted on the world stage. Thankfully, those comparison’s have faded during the last months and they are hardly missed. But it is possible to make a rather unsettling comparison that has to do with how policy and process has proceeded in Trump’s White House. At least before John Kelly took over as Chief of Staff. It goes like this:

Argentina and Venezuela lie at opposing ends of South America but they share having experimented with and experienced one or other form of populist governments. Peron and the Kirchners in Argentina's case. Chavez and Maduro in Venezuela's case. The late Paul Lewis described Argentine politics at it's core as distinct groups acting directly on the state without the traditional intermediating institutions playing much of an effective role. Then corruption breeds contempt and rage and various actors - many of them corrupt themselves like the unions in Argentina or the current military and security forces in Venezuela - make their cases known by blocking highways, attempting coup d'etats or going on massive strikes that shut down most of the economy.

What seems to be at work is a sort of hangover from the days of the Great Lider who generally plays different groups off of each other in other to keep a firm grip on power. And does so with little respect for the constitution in place when he (whether Peron or Chavez) assumed power. And they both of course, re-wrote their nation's constitutions to ensure loyalty and perpetual rule of their governing faction/party.

That means the mediating institutions - especially the courts - are left in tatters after they depart from the scene, but the tactic of direct action remains a habit picked up during their regimes when the direct action tended to be against opponents of their populist/fascist/socialist regimes. And that means that many groups become convinced - perhaps rightly so because it becomes a vicious circle - that direct action is the only way to be heard and to pry concessions from the state.

Ok. America is light years away from Venezuela. And oceans away from Argentina. As fractured and unpopular as the mediating institutions in America might be, they are stable and functional in ways that Latin America can only dream of. And America's constitution remains the best outline for a successful, democratic republic that man has been able to create. Even with Mitch McConnell as Senate Majority Leader.

But what the president and more to the point, the broader cultural anger at institutions in America, have brought to the forefront is a shift or leaning towards the tactics of direct action one sees in third world basket cases like Venezuela and Argentina. Last week's handbag swinging between Scaramucci and Priebus (to be fair twas the mooch that done most of the swinging) was the culmination of the clashes between competing power centers that have been a feature and not a bug of Trump's mode of governing. Leaks galore from inside the administration and from almost every major government department in D.C. A media with an unprecedented, narcissistic need to upend its nation's democratically elected administration. Policy by tweets. A GOP Senate hopelessly divided between two-faced moderates and ideologically stubborn conservatives.

So. Is it any wonder that Rex Tillerson - remember him? The Secretary of State? - has gone into direct action mode with regards to a very dangerous situation developing with North Korea? In his words:

We do not seek a regime change, we do not seek the collapse of the regime. We do not seek an accelerated reunification of the peninsula. __ Oh? Really? Yes, this could be a carefully coordinated appeal to the nut job Kim Jong-un who may be close to developing an ICBM with a nuclear warhead. A way to slow down the DPRK's race to build a missile system that actually works, while America puts in place a strategy to finally end the crazed Stalinist dictatorship.

Or it could be that Senator Lindsey Graham's comments on how the president is very close to launching an attack on North Korea has prodded Tillerson to act as a counterweight. This is unsettling. If America is finally going to have to engage in direct conflict with North Korea - after some 64 years of tense stand offs - then is it really the time for senators and cabinet secretaries to engage in direct-action media stunts to influence the president? Let's hope not, but it sure seems like it.

Posted by Keeley at August 3, 2017 4:41 PM
Comments
Comment #419111

The crisis was averted by Trump and Nicki Hailey and not Tillerson. The successful UN supported sanctions against NK, with the support of China and Russia. One billion dollars cut from NK’s icbm building funds. It can’t be to their food because the little dictator has already convinced the NK people that 2 meals a day is healthier for them than 3.

Posted by: Blaine at August 7, 2017 3:16 PM
Comment #419120

My props to Trump and his administration for shepherding these sanctions through the UNSC. Good job, Mr. President.

Posted by: Warren Porter at August 7, 2017 5:47 PM
Comment #419124

Be still my beating heart….Warren Porter said something nice about Trump.

Posted by: Blaine at August 7, 2017 5:57 PM
Comment #419128

I join Warren and Blaine in thanking all those involved in getting new sanctions against North Korea through the UN SC.

Only time will tell if China honors the sanctions and if NK suffers enough to change its disastrous path toward a delivery system for nuclear weapons capable of reaching the US mainland.

It is my firm belief that President Trump, on the advice and counsel of our military and political leaders, will act militarily against North Korea if, and when, they reach a predetermined level of sophistication in their ICBM program.

Posted by: Royal Flush at August 7, 2017 6:35 PM
Comment #419132

I’m not here to be a reflexive partisan. If Trump does something well, I will commend him. North Korea leaves us with no good options at the moment. Trump seems to be sliding towards continuing Obama’s policy of “Strategic Patience”, which I think is the least bad option.

Despite Royal Flush’s reading of the tea leaves, I do not believe President Trump has the balls to reignite the Korean War. Strong leaders like President Moon will temper Donald Trump’s worst impulses.

Posted by: Warren Porter at August 7, 2017 10:00 PM
Comment #419147

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Comment #419148

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Comment #419172

The winner of the North Korea crisis will be China.

Posted by: Rich at August 8, 2017 7:06 PM
Comment #419173

Perhaps our Pal Warren can expand on what exactly would be achieved by continuing Obama’s policy of “Strategic Patience”

Has Warren learned nothing from the valuable lessons of history? When and where has appeasement worked for very long?

Appeasement of North Korea began, I believe, under President Clinton. Has our position with regards to North Korea gotten better, worse, or stayed the same since then?

I would say, worse…much worse. The time to stand up was back then by Clinton.

Posted by: Royal Flush at August 8, 2017 7:20 PM
Comment #419194

Strategic Patience is containment, not appeasement.

The Clinton Era framework halted the North Korean nuclear & missile programs. That diplomacy was an overwhelming success … until GWB’s belligerence ended the agreement. We can’t turn back the clock on GWB’s incompetence; squabbling about those lost opportunities doesn’t do us much good today. We must consider the future and that means preventing the export of any North Korean technology.

Donald Trump’s rhetoric has a lot of bluster, but he doesn’t have the balls to actually attack North Korea. The era of ‘strategic patience’ will continue. Kim will parade his tin cans up and down the streets of Pyongyang every year and the rest of the world will rightfully ignore him. Inevitably, internal fissures will crumble the dynasty north of the 38th parallel and the world will be ridded of yet another annoying gnat.

Posted by: Warren Porter at August 9, 2017 10:03 AM
Comment #419198

Inevitably, internal fissures will crumble the dynasty north of the 38th parallel and the world will be ridded of yet another annoying gnat.
Posted by: Warren Porter at August 9, 2017 10:03 AM

I too am an optimist in most things. I am not optimistic that North Korea, as a serious threat to the United States, will change without force.

Posted by: Royal Flush at August 9, 2017 2:20 PM
Comment #419201

RF,

Many said similar things about the USSR before its collapse. Nothing is permanent and that includes the Kim family’s grip on power. Contain the threat and make sure the technology never gets exported and Americans should rest easy. Kim Jong-un will not launch a preemptive nuclear strike unless we force him to do so.

Posted by: Warren Porter at August 9, 2017 3:06 PM
Comment #419203

Kim Jong-un will not launch a preemptive nuclear strike unless we force him to do so.
Posted by: Warren Porter at August 9, 2017 3:06 PM

I knew it would not be more than a day or so when some Liberal would write such nonsense.

Posted by: Royal Flush at August 9, 2017 3:27 PM
Comment #419208

Does North Korea want nuclear weapons as a deterrent, or do they intend to use them? No one talks about it, but they almost certainly have biological weapons and they have not used those. The North Korean goal is to force the US to withdraw from the peninsula. It is to unite Korea, not necessarily destroy the United States.

Time is on our side. Our ability to shoot down missiles and even artillery shells will develop faster than the North Koreans ability to develop ICBM’s. And it is a matter of time before someone takes out Kim Jong-un.

As frustrating as it might be, strategic patience is still the best option, as it has been since the Korean War.

It is also frustrating to see Trump talk so loosely about “fire and fury.” The man is an absolute idiot. Fortunately, the generals are in charge, not Trump.

Posted by: phx8 at August 9, 2017 3:59 PM
Comment #419209

North Korea will use its nuclear weapons and ICBM’s to blackmail the world into compliance with their demands. And, they will sell their technology to any terrorist around the world with the ability to pay.

“North Korea has violated or summarily withdrawn from an armistice, the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty, two IAEA safeguards agreements, an inter-Korean denuclearization agreement, two agreed frameworks, a joint denuclearization statement, the Leap Day agreement, and six U.N. Security Council resolutions — and yet, the most stubborn “engagers” of Pyongyang look on this clear historical record and declare that it calls for yet another piece of paper.”

North Korea has no respect for our historical weakness in dealing with them. They referred to President Obama as “a wicked black monkey”.

http://freekorea.us/2016/11/28/the-appeasing-north-korea/#sthash.yS7puXme.BjDpgdon.dpbs

Trump’s ‘fire and fury’ comment was an echo of Harry Truman’s address after he dropped the atomic bomb on Hiroshima.

Posted by: Royal Flush at August 9, 2017 4:22 PM
Comment #419213

Is the President planning to give Pyongyang the treatment Truman gave to Hiroshima & Nagasaki? If not, he has no business making threats he does not intend to carry through on. Bluffing earns no one’s respect and is the surest way to demonstrate weakness.

North Korea will use its nuclear weapons and ICBM’s to blackmail the world into compliance with their demands. And, they will sell their technology to any terrorist around the world with the ability to pay.

Obama’s strategic patience policy is a policy of containment. The United States must stand firm and resolute in the face of North Korean demands. Likewise, efforts to further isolate the regime and prevent exports of North Korean technology must occur.

Posted by: Warren Porter at August 9, 2017 4:38 PM
Comment #419214

I seriously doubt Trump was echoing Truman or anyone else. He knows virtually nothing about history. More likely, Bannon gave him the line. Bannon really dislikes McMaster, and this is his way of jockeying for position. Part of the deal for General McMaster taking the NSA position in the first place was that the Joint Chiefs of Staff would be reinstated, and Steve Bannon be kicked off. Think Bannon has forgotten that? It is no coincidence Breitbart went on the warpath against McMaster recently, with generous help on social media from Russian bots.

Recently McMaster fired two Bannon allies, Ezra Cohen-Watnick and retired Colonel Derek Harvey. Cohen-Watnick first entered the spotlight when he gave Chairman Nunes the false material that resulted in Nunes publicly humiliating himself and recusing himself from the Russia investigation. And then McMaster (And Senator Burr and others) infuriated the Bannon faction by publicly announcing there was nothing whatsoever to the “unmasking” scandal, and that the accusations against Susan Rice were unfounded.

Ouch.

So here we are. The president made a remarkable threat with no possible result other than heightened tensions and a general sense of a United States in chaos. The sad truth is, Trump and Bannon need a war. With approval numbers as low as 32%, they need to find a way to get Americans to rally around the flag- and them.

But the generals won’t let them. The generals- McMaster, Mattis, and Kelly- are in charge. A soft military coup is not good for the US, but it is better than an utterly unfit Commander-in-Chief making off-the-cuff threats of nuclear war.

Posted by: phx8 at August 9, 2017 4:39 PM
Comment #419215

Sure Warren…tempt them with “bribes” so they will be good. Tried and failed.

Prevent exports of bombs and delivery systems. OH, Sure…in the same way we prevent illegals from crossing our borders.

Under Obama, we prevented nothing that NK wished to do.

Posted by: Royal Flush at August 9, 2017 4:44 PM
Comment #419216

Warped, I doubt very much we will Nuc. Pyongyang, but I DO NOT doubt we give them the same treatment we gave Syria on strategic targets in NK.

Posted by: Rich KAPitan at August 9, 2017 4:54 PM
Comment #419218

Obama administration knew about North Korea’s miniaturized nukes

“Americans need to recognize as they ponder the increasingly dangerous North Korea situation that the Obama administration not only refused to do anything about this crisis but tried to downplay and conceal intelligence from the American people and Congress on how serious it was.”

http://www.foxnews.com/opinion/2017/08/09/obama-administration-knew-about-north-koreas-miniaturized-nukes.html

This president is an absolute disgrace. His oath to protect America was uttered with crossed fingers. He has empowered and emboldened America’s enemies while amassing a small fortune for himself.

I will turn my back on this president should I ever encounter him.

Posted by: Royal Flush at August 9, 2017 5:47 PM
Comment #419219

How can you fall for this stuff, RF? Hook, line and sinker, every time.

Posted by: phx8 at August 9, 2017 5:55 PM
Comment #419220

Can you follow the links in the article phx8? There are direct quotes from Clapper and others. Read a little before rushing to uninformed judgement.

Posted by: Royal Flush at August 9, 2017 6:09 PM
Comment #419221

R. F. phx8 can’t stay out of the grocery store tabloids long enough to get actual facts.

Posted by: Richard Kapitan at August 9, 2017 6:49 PM
Comment #419223

Obama was a coward full of blusterous talk; in fact, Obama never saw a red line in the sand, that he couldn’t ignore. All the left ever wants to do is talk, talk, talk, and then stand back and let it be.

But I will say one thing, it doesn’t surprise me that Schumer or Pelosi would nip at Trump’s heels; but for someone like McCain to mouth off against his parties president is disgusting. McCain needs to retire and go home to finish his days out. All he is doing is allowing the American people to see how ignorant he is. This is what happens when you’re convinced it’s your turn to be president, and no one wants you

Posted by: Blaine at August 9, 2017 7:53 PM
Comment #419224

I like this summary by Charles Krauthammer.

“North Korea may be just an unexploded ordnance of a long-concluded Cold War. But we cannot keep assuming it will never go off.”

One scenario he presents is; “Return tactical U.S. nuclear weapons to South Korea.”

https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/global-opinions/cold-war-relic-present-day-threat/2017/01/05/623c720e-d384-11e6-9cb0-54ab630851e8_story.html?utm_term=.de54d91a0ba6

Posted by: Royal Flush at August 9, 2017 8:00 PM
Comment #419234
Can you follow the links in the article phx8? There are direct quotes from Clapper and others. Read a little before rushing to uninformed judgement.

Apparently Royal Flush cannot because his real source is not Fox News, but rather The Washington Post. Inside, we discover:

North Korea has successfully produced a miniaturized nuclear warhead that can fit inside its missiles, crossing a key threshold on the path to becoming a full-fledged nuclear power, U.S. intelligence officials have concluded in a confidential assessment.

Look at that. An anonymously sourced news article. According to Royal Flush, this is “fake news” and must be false.

Under Obama, we prevented nothing that NK wished to do.

How many ICBMs did North Korea test when Obama was President? Zero. Kim sensed weakness in our new President and Donald Trump delivered. I am quite confident that Kim would not get away with his current mischief if Obama was still around. Unlike Trump, Obama carried the respect of other Asia-Pacific leaders and could convincingly isolate North Korea even further if needed. Instead, we have a situation whereby Chinese trade across the Yalu river has increased by over 30% in the first half of 2017.

KAP,

Obama’s dramatic “red line” speech was probably the worst foreign policy blunder of his Presidency. Unfortunately, Donald Trump seems to be emulating Obama a bit too well. It is clear to all that Trump’s rhetoric is just bluster and bluff. There will be no concrete military action taken to engage with North Korea. Our President will continue Obama’s policy of strategic patience and we will continue to “wait it out” in the hope that the Kim regime crumbles before those nuclear weapons harm anyone. Obviously, it isn’t pleasant to imagine a nuclear-armed state crumbling, but of all our options, it is the least bad one.

Posted by: Warren Porter at August 10, 2017 9:49 AM
Comment #419236

“How many ICBMs did North Korea test when Obama was President? Zero. Kim sensed weakness in our new President and Donald Trump delivered. I am quite confident that Kim would not get away with his current mischief if Obama was still around.”

That’s just silly, Warren.
North Korea tested nukes and missiles through out Obama’s administration and just last year they boasted that placing a hydrogen bomb atop long-range missiles may soon be reality.
Hillary even spoke out against Obama over this and distanced herself from his position by calling for a “”rethinking” of America’s strategy toward North Korea.”
Kim threatened the US and belittled and laughed at Obama, whenever he could. Trump makes the guy nervous, which is why he is being more bombastic.
Kim DID get away with the same ‘mischief’ under Obama. Not because he thought Obama was weak, or because he thinks Trump is weak, but because he knows how to play the game.

Fact is, all the North Korean dictators have ever needed is for their people to fear the US and to be seen as the savior. They have no need to respect or fear the US. They know we have tied our own hands with the UN and with trying to be the ‘better man’ by not ‘stooping to their level’ BS.

Posted by: kctim at August 10, 2017 10:57 AM
Comment #419237

Warped, All Kim has to do is point a missile in the direction of Guam and the fireworks will start, but I doubt it will be with Nucs. IMO it will be a Syria style hit but many times over. I doubt Trump is like Obama, he will do what he says, unlike Obama and his idle threats.

Posted by: Rich KAPitan at August 10, 2017 11:49 AM
Comment #419238

It’s interesting that the leftist media has temporarily moved from the Russian collusion to the Trump threat of NK. And we all know that when the media, Pelosi, Schumer talking points move to a different subject, the talking liberal talking heads on WB also move. Even Warren Porter has moved to (the sky is falling) shrill propaganda of Trump threatening all of the world by his comments to the little fat dictator in NK.

Posted by: Blaine at August 10, 2017 12:18 PM
Comment #419240
Kim DID get away with the same ‘mischief’ under Obama. Not because he thought Obama was weak, or because he thinks Trump is weak, but because he knows how to play the game.

Oh no! kctim has left the reservation. You are supposed to echo Royal Flush’s words and decry Obama’s “weakness” and praise Trump’s “strength”, but it seems you are interested in rational discussion instead. As you have noted, that formulation is total BS. North Korea does what it does irrespective to the “strength” or “weakness” of the President (at least insofar how the right likes to define those terms), but I’ve enjoyed parroting the mirror image of those talking points to the endless frustration of Royal Flush and Blaine.

It’s interesting that the leftist media has temporarily moved from the Russian collusion to the Trump threat of NK. And we all know that when the media, Pelosi, Schumer talking points move to a different subject, the talking liberal talking heads on WB also move. Even Warren Porter has moved to (the sky is falling) shrill propaganda of Trump threatening all of the world by his comments to the little fat dictator in NK.

You obviously weren’t paying attention yesterday when the media would not shut up about the predawn FBI raid at Paul Manafort’s residence. I was doing you a favor by not bringing it up, but if you’d rather talk about that, I am happy to do so.

Posted by: Warren Porter at August 10, 2017 12:34 PM
Comment #419244

Why would the raid on Manafort’s house be shocking to our side? It means nothing and certainly doesn’t surprise me that Obama holdovers would attempt to make an incriminating statement about Manafort. And you will say the FBI is run by Trumps man…and I will say, so is the State Department, but just recently Judicial Watch had to have a federal judge force the State Department to turn over more emails regarding Benghazi. So just because Trumps people run the departments, it doesn’t mean the anti Trump deep state Obama plants aren’t continuing to block Trumps agenda.

Posted by: Blaine at August 10, 2017 1:51 PM
Comment #419250

I have posted a link outlining all the paper we have signed with North Korea that the President’s involved regaled as stopping their efforts to obtain nuclear weapons and the means to deliver them. All worthless pieces of paper.

The “peace in our time” mentality of those past presidents’ was a dereliction of duty.

Warren Potter likes being a contrarian. We wonder what our school boy really believes.

Posted by: Royal Flush at August 10, 2017 4:31 PM
Comment #419256

Trump issues a red line and North Korea immediately steps over it. Now what?

Posted by: Rich at August 10, 2017 6:40 PM
Comment #419257

Now what?
Posted by: Rich at August 10, 2017 6:40 PM

I’ll bite, what?

Posted by: Royal Flush at August 10, 2017 6:47 PM
Comment #419258

As far as I know Rich, North Korea has not launched missiles against Guam.

Posted by: Royal Flush at August 10, 2017 6:49 PM
Comment #419259

Is North Korea being led by a madman with support from other madmen in his inner circle? Or, is North Korea plying its historical role of “bluster” and “bag”?

For decades the family leading NK has managed to “bluster” enough to “bag” all the goodies it needed from American presidents and other countries near them.

Will the man, armed with a knife, attack the man armed with automatic weapons? The madman probably will. The “blusterer” probably will not.

Posted by: Royal Flush at August 10, 2017 7:17 PM
Comment #419262

“As far as I know Rich, North Korea has not launched missiles against Guam.”

Royal,

Trump said that if North Korea kept threatening the US, that it would be met with “Fire and Fury.” North Korea immediately responded that if the US kept threatening it, that it would send four missiles into the waters off the coast of Guam next week.

Its all very cartoonish. Two leaders blustering at each other. It might be funny if the consequences of a mistake were not so catastrophic.

Posted by: Rich at August 10, 2017 7:22 PM
Comment #419263

President Trump and our SEC/DEF, military leaders, and the leaders in Japan, South Korea, and Guam have a plan in place should those missiles be launched.

The world would consider such a launch an act of war. Guess what Rich…the problem is gone.

I do find Rich’s words interesting. “cartoonish” and “catastrophic” in the same sentence. Which is it Rich?

Posted by: Royal Flush at August 10, 2017 7:35 PM
Comment #419264

Rich, it’s not bluster in the fat dictator launches missiles at a US territory, it’s called an act of war.

The left doesn’t know how to handle this situation. We have a president whom the left is not able to control and who could care less what they report or what the polls say. The left just can’t quite wrap their heads around this one. Trump wants to accomplish something for the country, and I honestly don’t think he dwells on reelection. Clinton, Bush, and certainly Obama talked and tried to bribe the little fat dictator. But Trump will do what the the fat man least wants…to lose his dictatorship and end up dead. I don’t care how large his underfed army is, when we decide to move in the fat mans days are numbered. China certainly won’t like losing the NK buffer zone, but they’ve had their chance to stop him.

Is Trump blustery, yes he is, but he is talking to the little fat man in the only language the fat man understands. I trust Trumps ability to communicate with an Asian dictator a whole lot more than I do democrats or establishment republicans. The lefts hyperbole about Trumps comments shows their inability to understand what he is doing. But the left is just parroting what they hear from the media. And no one ever accused the liberal media of being intelligent.

Posted by: Blaine at August 10, 2017 7:51 PM
Comment #419267

Maybe this is the solution.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VzXMlsShYaM

Posted by: Rich at August 10, 2017 9:16 PM
Comment #419268

I think a lot of conservatives here are a bit confused. Donald Trump did not promise “fire and fury” in retaliation for a North Korean attack. Our President promised such destruction if North Korea made another threat. As Rich has noted, Trump drew a line in the sand and Kim promptly crossed it and made the US President a fool. Now, that fire and fury clearly are not in store for North Korea, future threats from Trump lose their punch and the credibility of US promises to defend South Korea and Japan against aggression diminishes further.

Posted by: Warren Porter at August 10, 2017 11:04 PM
Comment #419273

Warren Porter, did you believe Obama looked like a fool when he drew lines in the sand that were crossed; or is this only about Trump.

My guess is that what Trump does is the greatest fear in the life of the left. What will the left do if the little fat dictator backs down? What will you do if he gives up his ICBM ambitions without a shot fired? Trump has outsmarted the left at every turn, but you still hold out for his destruction.

You do realize that if Trump is successful in what the past 3 presidents have botched, his popularity will explode. I have complete trust in Trumps military leaders to get the job done.

Posted by: Blaine at August 11, 2017 8:03 AM
Comment #419277

WP, your point about Trumps retaliation comments based upon an actual attack or a threat, are moot. The Chinese have now said they would defend NK from an unprovoked attack from the US; but if the little fat dictator was stupid enough to launch missiles at US territory or allies, they would stand down.

Posted by: Blaine at August 11, 2017 11:05 AM
Comment #419279
Warren Porter, did you believe Obama looked like a fool when he drew lines in the sand that were crossed; or is this only about Trump.

If you had read my earlier comments on this thread you would know the answer to this question. I specifically said that the ‘red line’ statement was perhaps Obama’s greatest foreign policy blunder.

My guess is that what Trump does is the greatest fear in the life of the left. What will the left do if the little fat dictator backs down? What will you do if he gives up his ICBM ambitions without a shot fired? Trump has outsmarted the left at every turn, but you still hold out for his destruction.

IF Kim surrenders his ICBMs and his nuclear weapons, I would be thrilled and I would certainly laud President Trump for his cunning. But that is a big IF and I am quite confident that Trump’s strategy of bluff and bluster will not yield any concessions from North Korea.

I have complete trust in Trumps military leaders to get the job done.
Blaine, we are already aware of your sycophancy. Trump could vaporize 10 million people in Seoul in a nuclear holocaust and you’d still be kissing his ass.
your point about Trumps retaliation comments based upon an actual attack or a threat, are moot

How is it moot? Trump said the USA would retaliate militarily if Kim made another threat. Kim made another threat and Trump did nothing. Thus, Trump’s initial statement was a lie. He bluffed and had no intention of carrying out his threat if North Korea didn’t fall into line.

The Chinese have now said they would defend NK from an unprovoked attack from the US

This is not news. The Sino-North Korean Mutual Aid and Cooperation Friendship Treaty has been in force for 40 years. And China already intervened once to save North Korea from American occupation 65 years ago. There was never any ambiguity that they would defend their buffer state if it was subjected to a unprovoked strike.

but if the little fat dictator was stupid enough to launch missiles at US territory or allies, they would stand down.

So, what you are saying is that apart from the fiery rhetoric, Trump is adopting the same stance as Obama and his predecessors: Avoid attacking North Korea preemptively, but maintain assets in order to respond quickly and decisively with US or allied interests come under attack.

Posted by: Warren Porter at August 11, 2017 4:59 PM
Comment #419282

One of my favorite movie lines is from the movie “Silence of the Lambs” when Dr. Hannibal Lecter says; “I’m having an old friend for dinner”.

Perhaps the day will soon come when Kim is invited to China for dinner and he simply does not return.

China certainly does not need North Korea as a buffer any longer in today’s sophisticated military reality where armies do not march into hostile territory. North Korea has been a useful surrogate for pricking American pride and keeping South Korea and Japan from becoming too vocal in condemning certain Chinese practices.

China voting for the latest sanctions against North Korea indicates to me that they are finally fed up with a supposed ally acting irresponsibly and forcing President Trump’s hand. China has much more to lose economically if ties with the United States, South Korea and Japan were severed than gaining from continued support of the Kim dynasty.

Posted by: Royal Flush at August 11, 2017 5:22 PM
Comment #419283

Warren Porter, you called Trump a “fool”, and my question to you was, “did you also call Obama a fool”? I don’t care about “policy blunders”. Saying someone has made policy blunders is not the same as calling them a fool. For all your bluster about you would support Trump when he does good, you’re still a leftist who says whatever you can to degradate Trump. Right???

You can talk about mutual aid agreements all you want; but we have a different and new situation with China. If NK makes a military move first, China will stand down. We have never had China say that in the past.

And lastly, nothing Trump does can be compared to Obama. The core beliefs are completely different. Obama does not love this country; he despises America. Obama’s own wife said she was never proud of America until Obama was elected. Obama sat under a preacher who believed America was evil and the chickens were coming home to roost. In fact his words were not “God bless America ” but rather “God d*** America”. Ever heard the saying, “you are a product of your environment”. Obama was a product of the America hating environment of a communist community organizer. You can paint Obama to be some patriot, but he wasn’t. He believed that whatever he could do to hurt America was what we deserved.

Trump on the other hand loves this country. He certainly didn’t have to give up his successful private life for ingrates like you.

If supporting my president and depending upon the man I voted for is considered in your opinion to be kissing his a**; then tell me what your unfailing support of the traitorous Obama was for 8 years? You can crow all you want, but Obama was a useless piece of excrement and will go down in history as the worst president we ever had. We understand your hatred for Trump, and that the left just can’t comprehend why or how Trump beat Hillary; but I’ll tell you…the vote last November was against everything Obama stood for and did while in office. Tell me WP, how many theories do you have to come up with to understand why Hillary lost?

Posted by: Blaine at August 11, 2017 5:54 PM
Comment #419306
Thus, T#%&?’s initial statement was a lie. He bluffed and had no intention of carrying out his threat if North Korea didn’t fall into line. Posted by: Warren Porter at August 11, 2017 4:59 PM
He’s become so divorced from the truth that people have stopped trying to quantify his lies. I think he’s up to 9 out of ten statements are now lies. I think he still expects China to solve this, but they seem to be going in the other direction. The joint chiefs can’t be comfortable with providing him classified information that he could just tweet out overnight. He has made a complete fool of himself:


A prosperous fool is a grievous burden.
Aeschylus
Trouble comes looking for you if you’re a fool.
Gregory Benford
A fool always finds one still more foolish to admire him.
Nicolas Boileau-Despréaux.
No creature smarts so little as a fool.
Alexander Pope
A discerning man keeps wisdom in view, but a fool’s eyes wander to the ends of the earth.
Proverbs 17:24
Who’s the more foolish, the fool or the fool who follows him?
Obi-Wan Kenobi
Fools rush in where angels fear to tread, and the angels are all in heaven, but few of the fools are dead.
James Thurber
The trouble ain’t that there is too many fools, but that the lightning ain’t distributed right.
Mark Twain

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