China’s trade with North Korea in overhead photos. Photo from here: 30 days of activity as of April 26. Read More
It’s hard to know how to deal with every day’s tsunami of Trump news. On the one hand, much of it affects US foreign relations and some the nuclear part of that. On the other, the administration lies and backtracks so much that it’s tempting to blow off much of it. The sheer volume of leaks, much of it on gossipy trivia, is tempting as a focus. The leaks themselves, as well as much of their content, indicate that White House operations are chaotic, and the bureaucracy is mostly resisting the crazier demands. Steve Bannon is much too influential, and President Trump isn’t reading what he signs.
There are hundreds of articles that I might link by the standards I’ve used in the past. But I don’t have that kind of time, and neither do you. It’s not a bad idea to check the New York Times or the Washington Post daily; both are doing a good job of covering the chaos. (Yes, I would complain about their campaign coverage too, but there are too many other things to do now.) I’ll try to present articles that help with thinking out how to deal with a presidency gone wrong, and foreign policy news that may be getting lost in the furor. Maybe some fun, too. Read More
Donald Trump’s government is taking up all the oxygen in the news. In a way, rightly so. But we have to keep ourselves sane and focus on the issues we can do something about. So I am continuing to look at the Russian connections. I’ll post when I have something ready. In the meanwhile, with an apology for too much Trump, here are some links.
One more fact: My yarn store had some more-or-less pink yarn that will go into some people’s pussyhats. It was all they had, and they said that the distributor didn’t know when they’d have more pink. Good job, ladies! 👍 Read More
Donald Trump likes and dislikes nuclear weapons, according to what he has said, as slippery as anything else he says. Here are excerpts from testimony to Congress by his Secretaries of State and Defense on the subject. Their views are fairly conventional. We don’t know how much they will influence him.
Sorry to be depressing, but we need to be aware of how we can lose our democracy, given many of the things that Donald Trump and his administration-to-be have said and done. It’s not an overnight change, but one little thing after another. The best thing is to avoid getting into those little things. More from Masha Gessen, this time on similarities between how Trump is likely to govern and what we see in Vladimir Putin. Read More
Donald Trump has been taking (or making, hard to tell) phonecalls from foreign leaders congratulating him on his electoral victory. He has been doing this without the benefit of briefing by the State Department, official interpreters and note-takers, or anyone else who has the US’s interests at heart, possibly on unsecured phones. Pakistan released what appears to be a verbatim transcription of his part of the call, featuring the words “fantastic” and “amazing” rather too many times and promising to help Pakistan with whatever. India was not pleased. Read More
More links to what I consider good commentary on the election.
Mourning Trump and the America we could have been. I would say we still can be, but it will take a lot more work than I anticipated.
What now? What may happen and suggestions for our responses.
What Europe needs to hear from Trump. I have this schizophrenic feeling, between two worlds, when I read something like this that assumes (because it must in order to make its own kind of sense) that Trump is a normal candidate, will be a normal president. He has nothing prepared that can respond to these very reasonable and normal expectations.
What Vladimir Putin wants to hear from Trump. Charles Pierce says that we should be hearing about Trump’s Russian connections, but of course we know we won’t. Crazy idea: If something truly disqualifying about them were found before the Electoral College meets on December 19, they could vote Trump out. I tweeted links to what I collected on those connections this morning. Haven’t seen much new since I collected most of it in July.
A view from India: The end of America’s soft power?
An open letter to my former colleagues in the US government’s civil, foreign, intelligence, and military services. By Richard Nephew, one of the negotiators of the Iran nuclear deal.
A few election-related links first. After the election, we need to make some changes. One is that the Republican Party must rejoin the nation in looking for solutions and bettering citizens’ situations. These declarations may be to mobilize the hard core of nihilistic supporters, but carrying them out will be disastrous for the nation. Donald Trump is taking Karl Rove’s dictum about creating one’s own reality to the extreme. Another thing that Republicans must give up. And the feminist revolution must include men. Read More
Pakistan and India are glaring and occasionally shooting at each other again. Since both have nuclear weapons and no warning time at all to decide what it is the other has in that missile, this is a particularly dangerous situation. Here’s a good idea: Russia and China, which have good relations with the two, should press for a peaceful accommodation and better ways for India and Pakistan to relate to each other. Vladimir Putin seems to want to be seen as a peacemaker. He’s blown that in Syria. India and Pakistan present a real opportunity. Read More
There’s a lot going on in the world that isn’t Donald Trump. Unfortunately, we have to pay attention to a bullying ignoramus who might become President of the United States. Here are some of the other things, and a few background pieces on continuing issues. Read More