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The clock is ticking. We'll see... Pakistan, Taiwan and Trump nominees

Reader comment on item: A Conservative in the Age of Trump

Submitted by Michael S, Jan 20, 2017 at 04:21

I have no qualms whatever about any of Trump's intended appointees. Concerning Steve Bannon, he has been very successful as the Presiden-elect's campaign strategist; and he will probably continue to be successful as his chief strategist in the future. As for Rex Tillerson, he has been nominated to a position chiefly concerned with foreign relations. His statements and positions are at:

http://thefederalist.com/2017/01/19/rex-tillerson-words-americas-biggest-foreign-policy-challenges/

In just eight hours from my typing this, we should begin to see the chips begin fly. Next Monday, Jan. 22, 2017, should be even more eventful -- it will be Trump's first full "working day".

Daniel, I'm surprised to see you applauding the President-elect's phone conversation with the President of Taiwan. That was a truly gutsy move, on Trump's part. I think that the Taiwanese themselves are nervous about that move. Depending on (China's President) Xi's response, it has the potential of moving China from the category of competitor to adversary. Between that move, and the Trump team's stated intention of opposing Red China in the South China Sea, this could bring the situation in that part of the world to a head -- for good or for bad. At best, Xi will humble himself in the face of overwhelming American military superiority. At worst, he will let his pride lead him into disastrous adventures that could lead to war.

Concerning Pakistan, it was Time Magazine (a not very credible news source) that described Trump's conversation as "bizarre". Looking more objectively at US-Pakistan relations, these can not be disentangled from many issues:

1. Pakistan's government continues to shelter enemies of America, including the Taliban.
2. Pakistan continues to serve as a base for terrorist attacks against India
3. Pakistan is closely allied to Red China, which is shaping up as an adversary of the US
4. Pakistan has a rapidly-growing nuclear arsenal; and it is a Pakistani who helped the Iranians and North Koreans develop their nuclear programs.
5. Pakistan's main foreign policy concern is its enmity with India. The latter has a close relationship with Israel and the US, as well as Russia and Japan.

For Donald Trump to open his comments to his Pakistani counterpart with the words, "You're doing a great job!", is putting the best possible face on what could (and possibly should) be a very very strained relationship.

Seven hours and forty minutes left... We'll soon begin to see how it all turns out.

Submitting....

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Note: Opinions expressed in comments are those of the authors alone and not necessarily those of Daniel Pipes. Original writing only, please. Comments are screened and in some cases edited before posting. Reasoned disagreement is welcome but not comments that are scurrilous, off-topic, commercial, disparaging religions, or otherwise inappropriate. For complete regulations, see the "Guidelines for Reader Comments".

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