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Sat Aug 3, 2019, 12:08 PM

foreign policy; Trump's coalition of one--The image says it all............

President Donald Trump believes that other countries take advantage of U.S. resources and generosity. | Dan Kitwood/Getty Images

foreign policy
Trump’s coalition of one


The president has yet to get serious buy-in from other countries for an operation to protect oil tankers sailing past Iran.


08/02/2019 05:04 AM EDT

George H.W. Bush led a coalition of some three dozen countries that kicked Saddam Hussein’s Iraq out of Kuwait in 1991.

George W. Bush had his “coalition of the willing” behind the U.S. invasion of Iraq in 2003.

But so far, Donald Trump’s coalition to protect oil tankers from alleged Iranian aggression appears to have just one member — the United States.

The British have demurred, the French are noncommittal and the Germans on Wednesday flat out said no. They’re all still smarting from the president’s exit from the 2015 Iran nuclear deal, which they say is partly responsible for Tehran’s suspected bellicose behavior. They’re also worried that aligning with the U.S. on such an initiative could drag them into a war with Iran. Those concerns have only risen this week after Trump imposed sanctions on Iran’s foreign minister.

“Clearly, a military operation in the Gulf would increase exponentially the potential triggers for a confrontation with Iran,” Nathalie Tocci, special adviser to European Union foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini, said via email. “So long as [Europeans] see a chance of freedom of navigation being secured through dialogue and diplomacy with Iran, they will opt for this route.”

“Other governments aren’t sure where the U.S. is trying to take them,” added Jon Alterman, a Middle East analyst in Washington. “They think that aligning with the U.S. incurs risk without providing security.” ................................................

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