Posted: Fri Jun 16, 2017 9:44 pm
"Trump's one great advantage in all of this is that he has done nothing wrong. He did not obstruct justice because there is no crime."
working on it
https://pjmedia.com/richardfernandez/20 ... e-changer/At the heart of the vacuum is a growing political division in the West, the putative wrecker ball of the G's collapse. Evidence of the division abounds. "It feels like America is descending into chaos," writes John Podhoretz. "Wednesday’s ghastly shooting spree at the congressional Republican baseball practice" felt like the start of something. The assassin had a list of six other Republican congressman in his possession.
Not the supposed protectionist Donald Trump, but the “free trade” wing of the Republican Party has taken the United States into a trade war that it can only lose. New sanctions against Russia passed by the House and Senate last week force Europe into a de facto alliance with Russia against the United States, and by extension with China as well. It is the dumbest and most self-destructive act of economic self-harm since the United States de-linked the dollar from gold on August 15, 1971, and it will have devastating consequences. The charade in the House and Senate may embarrass Trump, but it also poses a threat to European energy supplies as well as an extraterritorial intrusion into European governance. Berlin, Paris and Rome will conspire with Moscow to circumvent the sanctions while attacking the United States at the World Trade Organization and other international fora. ...
Not Trump, but his domestic opponents have set in motion an unprecedented disturbance in Atlantic relations, and effectively put Berlin, Paris and Rome in the same camp with Moscow in opposing American policy. European governments are already consulting with Moscow about mechanisms to get around the sanctions. Russia has responded by expelling a large number of diplomats from the embassy in Moscow, but that is merely a symbolic gesture. There are more disagreeable measures that Moscow might take, such as providing advanced weapons to Iran, giving close air support to Iranian-controlled militias in Syria, and increasing military cooperation with China. Russia and China, as I have reported elsewhere, already back Iran’s international brigades of Shi’ites as a counter-toxin to Sunni jihadists shaken loose by America’s blunders in Iraq.
America won the Cold War by driving a wedge between Russia and China, and by persuading a frightened Western Europe to point medium-range missiles at the Russian heartland. Russia sought to compensate for its economic inefficiency by turning Europe into an economic colony, and the most dangerous operations of the Cold War were undertaken to prevent this. Now, for narrow political reasons, Trump’s enemies propose to undo the whole structure of relationships that won the Cold War and drive Europe into the arms of the Russians and Chinese. I do not believe for a moment that McCain and Schumer have a clue about this—they are like the “sleepwalkers” in Christopher Clark’s brilliant history of the outbreak of the First World War—but if I were a Russian operative, I would try to invent someone like John McCain, if McCain did not already exist.
As David Goldman noted this week at PJ Media, the sanctions could easily backfire, because they will force Europe to move closer to Russia to protect its economic interests. The sanctions also remove a bargaining chip the president had hoped to use to urge Russia to stop its aggression in Ukraine and to stop protecting the Iranian regime. “It is the dumbest and most self-destructive act of economic self-harm since the United States de-linked the dollar from gold on August 15, 1971,” Goldman argued, adding:
Not Trump, but his domestic opponents have set in motion an unprecedented disturbance in Atlantic relations, and effectively put Berlin, Paris and Rome in the same camp with Moscow in opposing American policy. … Now, for narrow political reasons, Trump’s enemies propose to undo the whole structure of relationships that won the Cold War and drive Europe into the arms of the Russians and Chinese.