US-Soldaten in Afghanistan

2.2. USA

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The American Conservative vom 24.09.2018

"The 'Isolationist' Slur and 'International Order'"

Daniel Larison reagiert auf den Beitrag von Robert Kagan in der New York Times, in dem der Vordenker der Neokonservativen US-Präsident Trump u.a. internationalen "Isolationismus" vorgeworfen hat. Larison meint, dass Kagan diesen Begriff undifferenziert verwendet, um jede Abweichung von seinen eigenen Vorstellungen zu diskreditieren. "Kagan is not interested in accurately describing the views of the people that he is attacking, and so he calls every foreign policy view he doesn’t like 'isolationist' without ever defining what it is supposed to mean. 'Supporting fewer wars than Bob Kagan' does not make someone an 'isolationist,' but that is what he wants us to think, and he wants us to feel very bad about it. We are supposed to come away from the piece feeling very worried that we are repeating grievous mistakes of the past, but the attempt at guilting us into supporting more unnecessary wars doesn’t work. (...) He opens the op-ed with a quote that says Trump 'doesn’t value the rules-based international order,' but this accusation is particularly rich coming from a leading proponent of preventive war and 'benevolent hegemony.' Kagan is a huge fan of U.S. primacy and frequent American interference in other countries’ affairs, but it is hard to take seriously that he values a 'rules-based international order.'"

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New York Times vom 23.09.2018

"'America First' Has Won"

Der als neokonservativer Vordenker geltende Robert Kagan stellt fest, dass die drei Säulen der Ideologie des US-Präsidenten bereits vor dem politischen Aufstieg Donald Trumps in der US-Bevölkerung immer größere Zustimmung erlangt hätten. "America First" werde die US-Außenpolitik deshalb wohl auch nach dem Abtritt Trumps prägen, so seine Prognose. "President Trump may not enjoy majority support these days, but there’s good reason to believe that his 'America First' approach to the world does. (...) The old consensus about America’s role as upholder of global security has collapsed in both parties. Russia may have committed territorial aggression against Ukraine. But Republican voters follow Mr. Trump in seeking better ties, accepting Moscow’s forcible annexation of Crimea and expanding influence in the Middle East (even if some of the president’s subordinates do not). They applaud Mr. Trump for seeking a dubious deal with North Korea just as they once condemned Democratic presidents for doing the same thing. They favor a trade war with China but have not consistently favored military spending increases to deter a real war. Democrats might seem to be rallying behind the liberal order, but much of this is just opposition to Mr. Trump’s denigration of it. Are today’s rank-and-file Democrats really more committed to defending allies and deterring challengers to the liberal world order? (...) what we’re seeing today is not a spasm but a new direction in American foreign policy, or rather a return to older traditions — the kind that kept us on the sidelines while fascism and militarism almost conquered the world."

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Politico vom 23.09.2018

"Foreign policy bigwigs: Trump risking war with Iran"

Mehr als 50 frühere Mitarbeiter der US-Regierung haben Präsident Trump in einem öffentlichen Brief aufgefordert, seinen Iran-Kurs zu korrigieren. "The statement, shared first with POLITICO, is unusual in that it acknowledges the legitimacy of Trump’s criticisms of Iran’s overall behavior, even as it pushes the president to rethink his strategy. 'Applying pressure and unilateral sanctions without viable diplomatic options ... could lead to a more dangerous, destructive and enduring regional conflict with Iran,' argue the more than 50 people who signed the statement. Among the signatories: former Director of National Intelligence James Clapper, who served Republican and Democratic presidents; former Secretary of State Madeleine Albright, who served in the Democratic administration of Bill Clinton; and former Treasury Secretary Paul O’Neill, who served the GOP White House of George W. Bush."

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The Intercept vom 21.09.2018

"Michael Moore's 'Fahrenheit 11/9' Aims Not at Trump But at Those Who Created the Conditions That Led to His Rise"

Der Dokumentarfilmer Michael Moore hat sich in seinem neuen Film "Fahrenheit 11/9" mit dem Aufstieg Donald Trumps zum US-Präsidenten auseinandergesetzt. Glenn Greenwald lobt in seiner Besprechung, dass Moore sich in weiten Teilen des Films auf die strukturellen Ursachen des politischen Erfolgs Trumps konzentriert. "Moore dutifully devotes a few minutes at the start of his film to Trump’s rise, and then asks the question that dominates the rest of it, the one the political and media establishment has steadfastly avoided examining except in the most superficial and self-protective ways: 'how the fuck did this happen'? Knowing that no political work can be commercially successful on a large-scale without affirming Resistance clichés, Moore dutifully complies, but only with the most cursory and fleeting gestures: literally 5 seconds in the film are devoted to assigning blame for Hillary’s loss to Putin and Comey. With that duty discharged, he sets his sights on his real targets: the U.S. political establishment that is ensconced within both parties, along with the financial elites who own and control both of them for their own ends."

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Defense One vom 18.09.2018

"Cognitive Science Helps Explain How We Blunder Into War"

Brian VanDeMark von der U.S. Naval Academy hat in seinem neuen Buch "Road to Disaster" aus der Perspektive der Kognitionswissenschaft untersucht, wie die USA nach 1945 immer tiefer in die Krise des damaligen Indochinas hineingezogen wurden und schließlich den Krieg in Vietnam begannen. "In 1945, Vietnam’s Ho Chi Minh wrote to President Truman, thanking him for U.S. assistance in their mutual fight against the Japanese and asking for help against France’s effort to reassert colonial control in Indochina. Truman never got the letter — but there’s little reason to think it would have diverted America from its path to war in Southeast Asia. In his new book, Road to Disaster, U.S. Naval Academy professor Brian VanDeMark explores why. By using the insights of cognitive science to dissect the flawed perceptions and decisions of the Vietnam era, he teaches today’s leaders to spot their own."

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IntelNews vom 18.09.2018

"US intelligence reevaluates safety of Russian defectors in light of Skripal poisoning"

Die CIA sorgt sich im Licht der Skripal-Affäre um die Sicherheit der eigenen russischen Überläufer, berichtet Joseph Fitsanakis. "Like MI6, the US Central Intelligence Agency also has a protection program for foreign nationals whose life may be at risk because they spied for the US. The CIA’s protection division, called the National Resettlement Operations Center, helps resettle and sometimes hide and protect dozens of foreign agents, or assets, as they are known in CIA lingo. But following the Skripal case, some CIA resettlement officials have expressed concern that protection levels for some foreign assets may need to be significantly raised. The New York Times, which published the story last week, said that it spoke to 'current and former American intelligence officials', which it did not name. In light of those concerns, US counterintelligence officials have been carrying out what The Times described as 'a wide-reaching review' of every Russian asset who has been resettled in the US. The purpose of the review is to assess the ease with which these former assets can be traced through their digital footprint on social media and other publicly available information."

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The Intercept vom 17.09.2018

"Government Can Spy on Journalists in the US Using Invasive Foreign Intelligence Process"

Cora Currier berichtet, dass geltende Sicherheitsregelungen der US-Regierung neu veröffentlichten Dokumenten zufolge erlauben, Journalisten ohne gerichtliche Erlaubnis zu überwachen. "Targeting members of the press under the law, known as the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act, requires approval from the Justice Department’s highest-ranking officials, the documents show. (...) 'This is a huge surprise,' said Victoria Baranetsky, general counsel with the Center for Investigative Reporting, previously of Reporters Committee for the Freedom of the Press. 'It makes me wonder, what other rules are out there, and how have these rules been applied? The next step is figuring out how this has been used.' (...) Ramya Krishnan, a staff attorney with the Knight Institute, said that concerns remained. 'There’s a lack of clarity on the circumstances when the government might consider a journalist an agent of a foreign power,' said Krishnan. 'Think about WikiLeaks; the government has said they are an intelligence operation.' Hannah Bloch-Wehba, a professor at Drexel University, said that 'a probable example would be surveillance of reporters who are working for somewhere like RT' — the state-funded Russian television network — 'and as a consequence, anyone who is talking to reporters for RT. The reporters are probably conscious they are subject to surveillance, but their sources might not be.'"

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The Atlantic vom 16.09.2018

"America Needs an Entirely New Foreign Policy for the Trump Age"

Peter Beinart ist aufgefallen, dass die US-Demokraten Präsident Trump in der Außenpolitik regelmäßig von rechts attackieren. Dies sei problematisch, da sich die Parteispitze damit von ihrer Basis und deren berechtigten Zweifeln an der interventionistischen US-Politik abwende. "Trump’s election — which followed anti-interventionist rebellions by Ross Perot, Jerry Brown, Pat Buchanan, Ralph Nader, Ron Paul, and Bernie Sanders — was a disastrous response to a legitimate and enduring discontent. The choice facing Democrats in the Trump era is whether to join a hawkish alliance that aims to suppress that discontent or whether to channel it in a progressive direction. Hawks will denounce any foreign policy that abandons unipolarity as defeatist, a harbinger of national decline. But the progressive activists remaking the Democratic Party suspect, with good reason, that the pursuit of global dominance has been not an alternative to national decline but one of its causes. If in the coming years those activists articulate an agenda for shielding the republic — in which the U.S. protects the dignity and freedoms of its people, grants other powerful nations deference near their borders, and works with them to the solve the common problems that plague humanity — they will not be retreating from America’s best foreign policy traditions. They will be ushering in their long overdue return."

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The National Interest vom 16.09.2018

"Could Donald Trump Truly Assassinate Assad?"

Dem neuen Enthüllungsbuch von Bob Woodward zufolge soll US-Präsident Trump ein Attentat auf Syriens Präsident Assad erwogen haben. Daniel R. DePetris schreibt, dass die beschriebene Episode die Frage aufwerfe, wie leicht US-Präsidenten den Tod anderer Staatschefs anordnen können. "If President Trump was intent on killing Bashar al-Assad, Kim Jong-un, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, Nicolas Maduro, or any other foreign adversary of the United States, he could technically do so by simply rescinding the Reagan-era directive and replacing it with his own, less restrictive, directive. Unless the U.S. Congress responded by codifying the Reagan-era assassination ban into statute, there would be little in the way of resistance — outside of bureaucratic inertia or slow-rolling, which the Woodward book makes clear is a feature of this administration — to the president actually bringing the United States back into this murky and stomach-churning business. All that would be required from President Trump is a stroke of the pen. (...) Bob Woodward’s book exposes Trump as a man who doesn’t particularly care about norms, tradition, and conventionality. The American people may very well wake up one day and learn that the United States is dipping back into the old Cold War playbook."

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RealClearPolitics vom 14.09.2018

"Woodward: No Evidence Of Trump-Russia Collusion, I Searched For Two Years"

Bob Woodward, dessen Enthüllungsbuch über das vermeintliche Geschehen im Weißen Haus Aufsehen erregt hat, hat in einem Interview bestätigt, dass er während seiner zweijährigen Recherche keine Beweise für geheime Absprachen zwischen Donald Trump und Russland entdeckt habe. "'Did you, Bob Woodward, hear anything in your research in your interviews that sounded like espionage or collusion?' Hugh Hewitt asked Woodward. 'I did not, and of course, I looked for it, looked for it hard,' Woodward answered. 'And so you know, there we are. We’re going to see what Mueller has, and Dowd may be right. He has something that Dowd and the president don’t know about, a secret witness or somebody who has changed their testimony. As you know, that often happens, and that can break open or turn a case.' 'But you’ve seen no collusion?' Hewitt asked again to confirm. 'I have not,' Woodward affirmed."

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Guardian vom 13.09.2018

"A new authoritarian axis demands an international progressive front"

US-Senator Bernie Sanders fordert in diesem Beitrag für den Guardian, dass sich linke Kräfte der "neuen autoritären Achse" weltweit in einer gemeinsamen "progressiven Front" entgegenstellen müssen. Dabei werde es nicht ausreichen, die internationale Ordnung ungeachtet ihrer Mängel zu verteidigen: "In order to effectively combat the rise of the international authoritarian axis, we need an international progressive movement that mobilizes behind a vision of shared prosperity, security and dignity for all people, and that addresses the massive global inequality that exists, not only in wealth but in political power. Such a movement must be willing to think creatively and boldly about the world that we would like to see. While the authoritarian axis is committed to tearing down a post-second world war global order that they see as limiting their access to power and wealth, it is not enough for us to simply defend that order as it exists now. We must look honestly at how that order has failed to deliver on many of its promises, and how authoritarians have adeptly exploited those failures in order to build support for their agenda."

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The Hill vom 12.09.2018

"National identity crisis makes the US more like the Middle East"

Politikwissenschaftler Francis Fukuyama stellt fest, dass die politische Polarisierung in den USA die geteilte nationale Identität zu überschatten droht. "An Iraqi politician of long experience told me that, after the invasion in 2003, Americans were constantly advising Iraqis to put aside their sectarian and ethnic differences and to seek greater national unity. Today, he somewhat mischievously throws that advice back in the faces of the Americans he knows. Instead of 'Americanizing' the Middle East, he notes, the U.S. has become increasingly 'Middle Easternized.' The polarization of American society is so extreme that the Republican and Democratic parties resemble warring tribes that see each other as existential threats. (...) our politics become Middle Eastern-like the moment we begin thinking that the fixed characteristics with which we are born — race, ethnicity, gender, religion, etc. — ought to determine the way we think and act, not just about politics but across culture more generally."

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Politico vom 11.09.2018

"Is the Left Ready to Handle National Security?"

Van Jackson hält es für möglich, dass US-Präsident Trump bei den Wahlen 2020 von einem progressiven Herausforderer der US-Demokraten geschlagen werden könnte. Noch sei allerdings unklar, welche außen- und sicherheitspolitischen Folgen dies haben würde. Bisher deute einiges darauf hin, dass eine progressive Außenpolitik sich von einer neoliberalen kaum unterscheiden würde. "One of the problems with the left’s principled foreign policy positions is that they resemble something the left has spent a lifetime rallying against: neoliberalism. For the left, the term 'neoliberalism' has often had a pejorative association with capitalist empire; a ruling class controlling the global means of production while the rest of us take out loans for our avocado toast. Yet neoliberal foreign policy — especially as understood in the field of international relations — reflects a commitment to democracy promotion, human rights, economic interdependence, multilateralism over unilateralism, the primacy of upholding international commitments and the legitimacy of international institutions like the United Nations. In other words, a neoliberal foreign policy looks strikingly similar to what the left repeatedly advocates. It should thus be unsurprising that some neoliberals are of the political left."

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TomDispatch vom 11.09.2018

"After Trump"

Unabhängig von der Zukunft der Präsidentschaft Donald Trumps zieht Andrew J. Bacevich bereits jetzt das Fazit einer "bizarren Episode" der amerikanischen Geschichte und stellt nüchtern fest: "Let me state my own view bluntly: forget the atmospherics. Despite the lies, insults, name calling, and dog whistles, almost nothing of substance has changed. Nor will it. To a far greater extent than Trump’s perpetually hyperventilating critics are willing to acknowledge, the United States remains on a trajectory that does not differ appreciably from what it was prior to POTUS #45 taking office. Post-Trump America, just now beginning to come into view, is shaping up to look remarkably like pre-Trump America. (...) Trump is not the problem. Think of him instead as a summons to address the real problem, which in a nation ostensibly of, by, and for the people is the collective responsibility of the people themselves. For Americans to shirk that responsibility further will almost surely pave the way for more Trumps -- or someone worse -- to come."

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Politico vom 11.09.2018

"17 Years After 9/11, People Are Finally Forgetting About Terrorism"

Daniel Benjamin, der von 2009 bis 2012 als Terrorabwehrexperte in der Obama-Regierung tätig war, begrüßt, dass viele Amerikaner 17 Jahre nach den Anschlägen vom 11. September offenbar nicht länger auf die Bedrohung durch den Terrorismus fixiert seien. "U.S. public opinion had become a runaway train on issue of terrorism, to the detriment of our broader interests. That’s a natural consequence of a political debate on terrorism that had lost touch with reality — as when, in 2014, Senator Lindsey Graham declared on 'Fox News Sunday,' 'I think of an American city in flames because of the terrorists’ ability to operate in Syria and Iraq.' (...) One important benefit of the declining obsession with terrorism is that it has allowed the biggest agency in the government, the Defense Department — which appears to have recognized U.S. over-investment in one threat area — to begin reallocating resources. (...) In light of over-the-top polarization, there is no reason to believe that our politicians won’t revert to the kind of outbidding on terrorism that had prodded the expansion of the counterterrorism machinery at the expense of so much else. And the nature of the media hasn’t changed: If anything, social media seems to be increasing the reverberation of news opinion that feeds outsize anxieties. A lot may depend on how much time there is until the next substantial attack, and, of course, what that event looks like. It’s not a test I’m looking forward to."

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