Sunday, April 9, 2017

Revolution in the White House?

Nikki Haley spits it out

If she didn't do this on Trump's personal say-so she is not long for this job.

And if she did this is a huge repudiation of Trump's Buchananite position regarding Syria, a position he has espoused throughout his time in the White House and throughout the campaign, a position of support for the Assad regime based on the view that there is no one in the region to replace Assad but Jihaders.

On Sunday's "Meet The Press," Haley told host Chuck Todd, 

"In no way do we look at peace happening in that area with Iranian influence. 

"In no way do we see peace in that area with Russia covering up for Assad. 

"In no way do we see peace in that area with Assad as the head of the Syrian government."


As tensions rise, USS Carl Vinson heads to Korean peninsula

Amid rising tensions with North Korea, an aircraft carrier strike group led by the USS Carl Vinson were heading toward the Korean peninsula.

The aircraft carrier and its accompanying ships had been scheduled to leave from Singapore for port visits to Australia on Saturday, but Adm. Harry Harris, head of U.S. Pacific Command, ordered the strike group to head north toward Korean waters instead.

. . . .

The China-U.S. presidential summit, held at Mar-a-Lago in Florida on Thursday and Friday, failed to deliver any concrete agreement on how to rein in North Korea's nuclear and ballistic missile programs between the two nations. 

. . . .

“President Trump indicated to President Xi ... that we would be happy to work with them, but we understand it creates unique problems for them and challenges and that we would, and are, prepared to chart our own course if this is something China is just unable to coordinate with us," he said.

And that's not Buchananism, either.

During the campaign, Trump shrugged off nuclear proliferation in general as inevitable and suggested Japan and South Korea get their own nukes so they could defend themselves from the likes of China and North Korea.

But instead of executing a planned withdrawal of US forces from the peninsula, from Japan, and from the region, generally, Trump is sending more forces to the area.

Javanka rising?

Meanwhile, North Korea recites the line validated in advance for some years by Pat Buchanan, himself.

The Guardian throws added and slightly different light on the attitude of China.

Tillerson: China agrees on 'action' on North Korea as navy strike group sails

As the US navy deployed a strike group towards the western Pacific Ocean, to provide a presence near the Korean peninsula, the secretary of state, Rex Tillerson, said China agreed with the Trump administration that “action has to be taken” regarding North Korea.

Tillerson told CBS’s Face the Nation, in an interview broadcast on Sunday, that when Donald Trump and Chinese president Xi Jinping met at the Mar-a-Lago resort this week, they “had extensive discussions around the dangerous situation in North Korea”.

“President Xi clearly understands, and I think agrees, that the situation has intensified and has reached a certain level of threat that action has to be taken,” Tillerson said.

Tillerson described a “shared view and no disagreement as to how dangerous the situation has become”.

And Trump himself?

Trump tells Japan 'all options on the table' in face of North Korea provocation

Donald Trump has vowed to boost the US’s military capabilities to counter the threat from North Korean missiles, hours before he is due to meet the Chinese leader, Xi Jinping, for talks that are expected to be dominated by Pyongyang’s nuclear and ballistic missile programmes.

In a telephone call on Thursday morning, Trump told the Japanese prime minister, Shinzo Abe, that “all options are on the table” – including military action – to address provocations by North Korea.

Trump “made clear that the United States will continue to strengthen its ability to deter and defend itself and its allies with the full range of its military capabilities”, the White House said in a statement about the 35-minute call. 

“The president emphasised that the United States stands with its allies Japan and South Korea in the face of the serious threat that North Korea continues to pose.”

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