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Thursday
Aug042016

It Is Time for Trump to Name His Foreign Policy Team

Real Clear Politics

By: Robert C. O'Brien

On May 18, Donald Trump made one of the best moves of his campaign. Responding to conservative concerns about who he would nominate to replace recently-deceased Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia, Trump published the names of eleven eminently qualified conservative judges who he would consider for the vacancy. The move reassured conservatives and completely removed the issue from the table.

With Bernie Sanders in her rearview mirror, Hillary Clinton is now busily reinventing herself as a national security expert in an effort to lure GOP hawks into her tent. The Secretary of State responsible for the failed Russian "reset," who joined with President Obama in 2012 in criticizing Mitt Romney for calling out the Russian threat, now talks like a Cold Warrior and rolls out GOP endorsements such as General John Allen.

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Wednesday
Jun012016

Taiwan Enters the Cross-Strait Relations Danger Zone

The National Interest

By: Robert C. O'Brien

Taipei, Republic of China - The Republic of China (ROC), better known as Taiwan to most Americans, has been in the headlines since Tsai Ing-wen of the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) was sworn in as the nation's first female president on May 20. The DPP derives most of its support from ethnic Taiwanese and is generally considered to be pro-independence. The opposition, Kuomintang Party, or KMT, which traces its roots to General Chiang Kai-shek's supporters, who fled the mainland ahead of the Communists in 1949, believes Taiwan to be fundamentally Chinese. Although it differs starkly in ideology with that of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) on the mainland, the KMT is generally in accord with the CCP that Taiwan is part of "one China." Accordingly, the PRC is not amused by Ms. Tsai's and the DPP's landslide win and the general excitement her inauguration has generated in Taiwan.

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Tuesday
Mar012016

Ted Cruz’s Case for a Reagan-Style Military Buildup

The National Interest

By: Robert C. O'Brien

The next commander in chief will face a stark reality: for eight years, President Obama systematically drained resources from our armed services. It will no longer matter why or how he did it. All that will matter is what happens next.

While President Obama may have been hoping that unilateral disarmament on the part of the United States would result in similar behavior from other major powers, the opposite has happened. Both China and Russia are engaged in significant military buildups and aggressive behavior from Ukraine to Syria to the South China Sea. Iran, which had been restrained by one of the most punishing economic sanctions regimes in history, is now on a $100 billion military shopping spree primarily at the Russian arms industry checkout counter courtesy of the American president. North Korea is accelerating its progress towards its declared intention of developing an ICBM capable of delivering nuclear warheads to the United States. ISIS and Al Qaeda, along with all the other terrorist networks festering in the Middle East, North Africa and beyond are constantly on the lookout for any new capability to do harm to America.

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Saturday
Dec262015

A New Year’s Resolution for Obama: Learn From Carter

The National Interest

By: Robert C. O'Brien and Michael Gallager

On Christmas Eve thirty-six years ago, the Soviet Union invaded Afghanistan. This was the first direct use of Soviet troops outside the Eastern Bloc since World War II, "a watershed event of the Cold War."

The Carter administration was already reeling from a series of foreign policy failures. As historian John Lewis Gaddis wrote, the invasion was “only the most dramatic of a series of humiliations for the United States.” The Soviets had deployed nuclear missiles to Europe in 1977 and Soviet-backed Cuban troops had intervened in Angola in 1975 and Ethiopia and Zaire in 1977. The Iranian revolution and subsequent hostage crisis, the rise of the Soviet-backed Sandinistas in Nicaragua and the Vietnamese invasion of Cambodia added to the general sense of crisis.

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Wednesday
Oct282015

Can Rubio and Cruz Capture the GOP Establishment?

Politico.com

By: Robert C. O'Brien