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Is Trump Preparing for War With North Korea? -The Atlantic

Peter Beinart makes the case that, by no longer talking about diplomacy, sanctions, or China, Trump is signaling that he's ready to start some shit.

Particularly chilling is the reported reason that Victor Cha's nomination for ambassador to South Korea was withdrawn.

The more closely you read Donald Trump’s comments about North Korea in his State of the Union address, the more plausible it becomes that he is preparing for war.

First, there’s the sheer emphasis he placed on the subject. In his speech, Trump devoted a mere sentence to Russia and China. He devoted 23 words to Israel, 34 to Afghanistan, and 48 to Iran. Even the war against ISIS, which Trump cites as the main foreign-policy achievement of his first year in office, garnered only 302 words. North Korea received 475.


But if Trump’s real aim was to rally public support for a military strike, the (American formerly held by the DPRK, Otto) Warmbier and Ji (Seong Ho, defector) stories serve a purpose. They rouse moral indignation. The Warmbier case even makes American military action seem like an act of self-defense. Kim’s regime brutalized a U.S. citizen. Now, as Trump told Warmbier’s parents, “we pledge to honor Otto’s memory with American resolve.”

As Trump was preparing to deliver his address, news broke that the White House was withdrawing the nomination of former Bush National Security Council official Victor Cha to be ambassador to South Korea. The Financial Times reported that Cha had been “asked by [administration] officials whether he was prepared to help manage the evacuation of American citizens from South Korea —an operation known as non-combatant evacuation operations—that would almost certainly be implemented before any military strike.” Cha, the Financial Times reported, “had expressed his reservations about any kind of military strike.” These reservations apparently cost him his job.

Read more here: https://www.theatlantic.com/international/archive/2018/01/trump-north-korea-sotu-cha/551933/
Posted by LudwigPastorius | Wed Jan 31, 2018, 04:16 PM (1 replies)

Trump Considering Bringing Charges Against Robert Mueller -NBC News


But Trump — who trusts no one, or at least no one for long — has now decided that he must have an alternative strategy that does not involve having Justice Department officials fire Mueller.

"I think he's been convinced that firing Mueller would not only create a firestorm, it would play right into Mueller's hands," said another friend, "because it would give Mueller the moral high ground."

Instead, as is now becoming plain, the Trump strategy is to discredit the investigation and the FBI without officially removing the leadership. Trump is even talking to friends about the possibility of asking Attorney General Jeff Sessions to consider prosecuting Mueller and his team.

"Here's how it would work: 'We're sorry, Mr. Mueller, you won't be able to run the federal grand jury today because he has to go testify to another federal grand jury,'" said one Trump adviser.


This would truly be the tipping point into all-out autocracy. ...the end of our democratic system of checks and balances.
Posted by LudwigPastorius | Wed Jan 31, 2018, 11:54 AM (14 replies)
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