Links – January 13, 2017

As I’ve noted before, Donald Trump’s strategy seems to be to keep enough balls in the air that we can’t keep track of any of them. And other sources are now lobbing some balls into the mix. These links don’t include much about the Trump – intelligence community – Russia dustup now occurring. I’ll try to address that separately (or at least present what I consider the better links). Here’s an FAQ for now.

Steve Bannon’s political thought. Bannon is a close advisor to Donald Trump, but we haven’t heard much about him. Along with Kellyanne Conway, he is also said to belong to the Council on National Policy, a secretive conservative group that may have connection to hate groups.

The Department of Energy is setting some markers.

Nuclear weapons numbers went down under President Barack Obama.

Trump doesn’t know what he doesn’t know about foreign policy. Excellent, from Stephen Walt.

Trump the tweeter. Takes his tweeting habit seriously and what it means, along with his appointments, for foreign policy. I’ll add that when I listened to Trump’s press conference this week, what I heard was mostly reiterated tweets. Micah Zenko and Rebekah Friedman Lissner parse the tweets and other fragmentary utterances to analyze Trump’s foreign policy thinking. An important article.

Open-source intelligence briefing on North Korea for Donald Trump. Or you! With neat pictures.

The US must talk to North Korea, by Siegfried Hecker. In a talk I attended this week, Hecker made the analogy with Iran and the JCPOA. The Bushies came into office determined to wreck the nuclear agreement with North Korea. They did, and North Korea got nukes. The Trumpies are determined to wreck the JCPOA with Iran. You can fill in the rest. Photo from here.

Why it’s a bad idea to move Israel’s capital to Jerusalem.

Sword-wielding Queen Elizabeth to the rescue!

A primer on Russia’s practice of kompromat. When I traveled to the former Soviet Union for scientific exchanges in the 1990s, we were always warned about this.

How we fool ourselves on Russia. This is simply the best article I have read on Russia, by William Burns, who has been a US diplomat in Russia.

Putin’s answer to the European Union isn’t doing so well.

The death of Akbar Hashemi-Rafsanjani in Iran.

Long read: Good analysis of the situation in Syria by Joshua Landis.



One comment

  1. The Blog Fodder · January 13, 2017

    Trying again. I hate my wifi. Have you read this article? Scary stuff.
    Good article on Rafsanjani; I worried about the impact of his death on reform there.


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