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For Peace With Putin, End America’s Pointless Wars

The upcoming summit between Donald Trump and Vladimir Putin is an overdue opportunity for the American president’s next bold peace initiative. It is time for the U.S. to stop its wasteful wars, and Russia can be a constructive partner to this end.

The mainstream press on both sides of the Atlantic will howl against any agreement between Trump and Putin—no matter what’s in it. So why not take steps that the American public will instinctively understand and that will provide the support for Trump to end America’s failed interventions? Besides what are his opponents going to do? Vilify him for seeking peace and starting the process of healing the many wounds of the wars? The American people are not fooled by false claims that Trump is soft on terrorism; they are aware that U.S. military interventions oftentimes can—and do—fuel terrorism.

President Trump should propose a drawdown of American troops in Afghanistan in exchange for a drawdown of Russian troops in Syria (along with a pledge that America has no interest in reengaging in the Syrian Civil War). This would be consistent with Trump’s oft-stated observation that America’s wars (declared and undeclared) in the Middle East have been a waste.

Trump need not “recognize” the Russian annexation of Crimea but he should assert that a resolution to the situation on the ground in Ukraine is a European matter—to be settled by bilateral negotiations between Russia and Europe.

Understanding of this magnitude would obviate the main pretext for the senseless escalation of pecuniary diplomatic sanctions—the defenestration of embassy and consulate staff—on the parts of both Russia and the United States. The return of the possibility of civilian travel between the two nations would do wonders to lower tensions. (Remember, even at the height of the Cold War, President Eisenhower argued that populations denied contact with each other would tend to be suspicious of each other—and prone to minor conflicts that could escalate into larger wars.)

The American public is not interested in diplomatic and media theater. They know two things to be true: the failing “Trump-Russia collusion” hysteria is proving baseless (and distracting from concerns over economic growth and jobs); and whatever America’s international security interests are in the Middle East, we are all better protected with allies that face similar threats.

Russia has more reason to be concerned over Islamic terrorism than America. Their southern border touches on several Islamic countries: Turkey, Iran, Azerbaijan, Turkmenistan, Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan, Tajikistan, Kyrgyzstan, and Afghanistan. The instability created by America’s misguided military adventures has, for years, been unsettling to Russia. According to a friend who has long studied Russia, America’s post-Cold War military aggression, starting in the Balkans, began the ascension to power of Russian military hardliners who were skeptical of America’s intentions for peace.

Russia has a significantly better understanding of and influence over most of those countries, including Iran. America’s relationship with Iran has long been hostile due to years of interference and mistreatment. The relationship was seriously complicated in 1953 when our CIA and British intelligence overthrew their democratically elected prime minister, Mohammad Mosaddegh, and placed the brutal Shah in power. The Washington keyboard warriors never mention this sad chapter in our history. Imagine how we would feel towards a country that interfered with us to that extent.

change_me

How much smarter would it be for Russia to work with its neighbor Iran to limit the civil war in Yemen, than for America to continue to provide military support to Saudi Arabia to perpetuate a colossal human tragedy?

The naysayers ridiculed Trump’s peace initiative with North Korea, and yet his denuclearization and pacification of the Korean Peninsula advances (in contrast to the efforts of four previous American presidential administrations). Given that Trump and Kim could sit together, what stands in the way of progress with Putin?

The past year and a half of Russophobia have been driven by the “bitter clingers” of Hillary’s failed national political ambitions, the military-industrial complex, corporate interests, corporate media, the Washington/New York/Hollywood commentariat, and foreign lobbyists. Too many of them profit from an endless state of war—throughout the world and, in particular, with Russia.

Washington and its clients are terrified that the war gravy train will be slowed or stopped. Our NATO clients are afraid of carrying their own national defense burdens. Washington neocons are perfectly willing to continue to waste the lives of our devoted military to protect both their funding and a world order that the West’s victory in the Cold War has rendered moot.

Again, the American people share no such delusions and are overwhelmingly tired of the wars they cannot explain or even locate on a globe. These wars have damaged and destroyed American families. War proponents’ repeated incantations about “supporting the troops” instead of keeping them home to protect their families and our country has worn thin.

We hear stories about parents being separated from their children at our borders, but not a peep about the American children being separated from their soldier parents and parents being separated from their soldier sons and daughters abroad.

The July 16 Trump-Putin summit is an opportunity for the president to act boldly in the face of near-total establishment opposition and work to bring peace to a war-weary world. If he works to reduce America’s involvement in its wars, the Russo-American disagreements will fade.

George D. O’Neill, Jr., an artist, is the founder of The Committee for Responsible Foreign Policy and a board member of The American Ideas Institute, the parent of The American Conservative. He and his wife reside in Florida.

44 Comments (Open | Close)

44 Comments To "For Peace With Putin, End America’s Pointless Wars"

#1 Comment By blimbax On July 8, 2018 @ 10:41 pm

“The return of the possibility of civilian travel between the two nations would do wonders to lower tensions.”

Since when has such travel not been possible?

#2 Comment By Fayez Abedaziz On July 9, 2018 @ 12:48 am

This is a pert good article.
When I’m in a public place, as in some fast food/casual restaurants and other places, they have a TV on the wall with CNN on.
CNN is a bad joke. For months and hour after hour they sit there, 4 or 5 historically ignorant people yakking about…something to do with Russia this, Russia on America’s loser of a system of elections, and, they never ask a specialist on Russia or the Middle East anything unless that person/s is a neo-con blabber mouth supporter.
Let’s face facts: The media, all so called news stations, are politically neo-con supporters or are neo-cons individually.
The real reason they have been after Pres Trump is-They are afraid that Russia and the U.S. will agree on something,such as Putin showing how wrong the U.S. policy on Syria, for example, has been wrong. Which it has indeed been.
Look at Trump’s advisers,his son in law for crying out loud, who has been a lobbyist/peddler/supporter of the extreme positions of the Israeli government as has hate-man Bolton, and yet these guys are advising and then meeting leaders in other nations? Do the American people know this?
One more thing. The media is not ‘liberal’ or ‘left.’ Because, they are liberal on social issues, but fascist/war mongers on politics and foreign policy. The media doesn’t care about people dying in America’s war crimes and crimes against humanity. In fact, they don’t even show what Europe/Asian/Middle East stations show on their media:the 1,000’s of children and others maimed or lying there from American supplied bombs and guns and even Americans thug military actions and assets being illegally somewhere like in Syria…
What the hell..!
This is my opinion in this ‘land o’ the free so kindly let my post…post…
Have a nice day

#3 Comment By Lenny On July 9, 2018 @ 1:20 am

“Surrender to Putin”

That seems to better describe this article.

The Pravda never died. it found reincarnation in the AC it seems

#4 Comment By DR On July 9, 2018 @ 2:53 am

Are there still US troops in Syria? Fighting what war, exactly? Assad’s victory is a fait accompli.

#5 Comment By Argon On July 9, 2018 @ 9:42 am

How is it that TAC has so many writers that project their beliefs on the current administration as if it is some sort of a Rorschach test? There is the administration as it is in *reality* and then there is the imaginary version. Let’s not confuse the two.

#6 Comment By Stephen J. On July 9, 2018 @ 9:59 am

We cannot “End America’s Pointless Wars.” Who would feed the corporate cannibals that feed off death and destruction? And there would be no “work” for the maniacs of militarism. Therefore the “madness” must continue.
——————————————
April 26, 2017
“The Maniacs of Militarism”

“War is madness” – Pope Francis

The maniacs of militarism are creating wars
Countries are bombed by warmongering whores
Iraq, Libya, Syria, Yemen and other countries too
Are hell holes of the earth, “The work,” of this insane crew

Enabled by politicians in positions of power
These well dressed war criminals hide and cower
The generals salute their political masters
Then the brainwashed obey these bemedaled disasters

Cities are destroyed and reduced to rubble
Where are the perpetrators that created all this trouble?
They are residing in luxury and given fancy titles
War crimes trials are needed, and are so vital

But this is not happening: the system is corrupted
And these evil beings, by some are worshiped
Blood-soaked villains that never do the fighting
They are the “experts” that do the inciting

They are the producers of death and destruction
Others are profiteers of all the bloody actions
Missiles, bombs and horrendous weapons
There is no end to the endless aggression

Millions are dead, and millions are homeless
Millions are refugees, and all this is atrocious
Once they had jobs, families, and homes as well
Then their countries were bombed by the agents from hell

Setting the world on fire is what these war arsonists do
The money for their depredations comes from me and you
They have made us all accessories to their criminal acts
Our Taxes are the blood money and that is a fact

Will the people ever say: “We have had enough”?
And put all these villains in secure handcuffs
Then lock them up in maximum security prisons
Then, we can say “goodbye” to the maniacs of militarism…
[more info at link below]
[1]

#7 Comment By Jon On July 9, 2018 @ 10:30 am

In summary, this remains to be seen especially when there is a steady push for more Defense spending and a proposal is out there for establishing a fifth branch of the armed forces — space cadets. An oversized military and the stockpiling of weapons and the ever bloated and expanding budget for R&D for new weaponry does not make a safer and less cantankerous world.

Perhaps if bills passed by Congress for expanding military spending were no longer so readily signed into law by the office where the buck supposedly stops, these so-called overtures for peace would have credibility.

As it is, it is too early to tell with respect to North Korea. And as to the Crimea and the fighting in the Don region, it is my understanding that NATO is committed to supporting the Ukraine in winning back lost territory. Are we then by tacitly approving the loss of the Crimea turning our backs on NATO? What then is the implication of potentially abandoning NATO?

Also, the blog ignores the potential impact that resumption and the raising of tariffs will have on international relations particularly with our allies. Can trade be decoupled from diplomacy? And does this goal of all against all through the erection of tariff walls make for a safer and more secure world? And are we then ignoring the potential blow back this inchoate form of mercantilism will have on our national security?

In short, not all indicators are pointing in the same direction of lessening tensions with our rivals. There remains, as the article above aptly mentioned, a reluctance to leave hot spots of perpetual warfare. After all, the cash cow that is the DoD budget remains ever sacred. Sooner or later weapons will be tested and used in conflict and soldiers will be given their marching papers for conflagrations somewhere and at sometime in the future as the fires presently burning might continue to smolder indefinitely.

#8 Comment By TheSnark On July 9, 2018 @ 11:16 am

Where did you dig up this Putin apologist? I thought that type retreated into the woodwork when the radical-left books stores went out of business after the Cold War (There was a “John Reed Bookstore” in my neighborhood that closed in 1991. It was replaced by a wine shop). The writer is using exactly same verbiage that these folks used to excuse everything the Soviets did, and blame it on the US.

Now these formerly left-wing apologists seem to have wondered over to the far-right side of the political spectrum and are also apologizing for Trump.

At least in Britain, where Jeremy Corbin is the head of that movement, it remains on the left.

#9 Comment By Michael Kenny On July 9, 2018 @ 11:55 am

The standard “let Putin win in Ukraine” argument. The author clearly believes that Putin cannot win unless the US capitulates to him (I’m sure that’s right!), so he is seeking to persuade his fellow Americans to submit voluntarily to a humiliating defeat, probably the most humiliating defeat the US has ever suffered in its history. And this is being presented as “conservativism”! Of course, whether Trump’s ultra-patriotic core supporters will accept such a humiliation remains to be seen. You can’t be great if you capitulate!
The author asserts that “the situation on the ground in Ukraine is a European matter—to be settled by bilateral negotiations between Russia and Europe”. There is no such political entity as “Europe”, so I don’t see with whom the Russian Federation could enter into negotiations, be they “bilateral” or otherwise. In addition, I don’t see how an entity called “Europe”, even if it existed, could give away the sovereignty of Ukraine or of any other European country or in any way “approve” the annexation of any part of any country’s territory.
The author’s entire argument seems to be based on the classic American master race ideology in which we in the rest of the world (we are, after all, 95% of humanity!) have no human rights and have to simply kowtow to the American master race. If nothing else, that flies in the face of the morality I was taught in Catholic school.

#10 Comment By b. On July 9, 2018 @ 12:41 pm

“President Trump should propose a drawdown of American troops in Afghanistan in exchange for a drawdown of Russian troops in Syria [..] How much smarter would it be for Russia to work with its neighbor Iran to limit the civil war in Yemen, than for America to continue to provide military support to Saudi Arabia to perpetuate a colossal human tragedy?”

Trump, assuming he can contain the GOP wing of the war profiteering biparty in Congress, is indeed in a unique position to disrupt the domestic political circus that we call the US foreign policy elites aka “the blob”. Nothing but biparty disapproval in published opinion can stop him from turning the entire “Russia!” hysteria upside-down and put the Obama-Clinton-Biden Democratic Party leaderships in direct opposition to at least half of their own membership and voters.

Except Israel and Saudi Arabia.

The author is beyond naive – he does not understand the motivations and incentive structures of the factions of US government and Congress and the sovereign nation states he lists any better than the domestic actors he rightly criticizes.

Trump, on Inauguration Day, had every opening to do to today’s establishment what Reagan almost did to the war profiteering classes of 1986. His own choices, uninspired, uninformed, and inconsistent to the point of premeditated dishonesty, have since deprived him of this opportunity.

It is a canard frequently repeated on these pages that Trump is striving to “undo” Obama’s “legacy” (a transient patchwork of a few pieces of compromised legislature, some executive orders and a lot of day-to-day improv statesmanship that was destined to be its own undoing). This is obviously not the case in Syria, in Yemen, or even more consequentially, on nuclear weapons. If Trump had any political imagination, or at least a modicum of cunning, pushing for a reduction of nuclear arsenals with Russia would have been a truly daring move that, in 2017, would have produced all the mouth-breathing Democratic Party hysteria that a 2020 campaigner could wish for.

Trump has no moves left. On Iran and North Korea, he has done a splendid job of boxing himself in. On Russia, he has let the Clintons box him in. His (and Kushner’s) own corruption made him vulnerable to a Clinton campaign gambit of Rovian “inoculation” against corruption claims of her (and her husband’s) own, his (and Kushner’s) dealings with Saudi Arabia, the UAE, and Qatar have since solidified that vulnerability, and the warmongering biparty has managed to tie Trump’s own – second tier – membership in the transnational oligarchy of elite corruption into a feint against an and all attempts to negotiate any kind of accommodation with Russia. On nuclear weapons, he has committed himself to “Obama plus” trillion dollar programs to make nuclear war “winnable” again.

If we embark on more decades of renewed nuclear arms races and “deterrence” based on failure-prone brinkmanship (such as Launch-On-Warning), the butcher’s bill for this successful political move will be staggering, and without precedent in human history. Trump has a unique opportunity to wrest from this historic neolibcon miscalculation, but the man we have witnessed over the past two years would never be able to see it, let alone act on it. In this, past performance does predict future results.

#11 Comment By Kurt Gayle On July 9, 2018 @ 1:17 pm

Lenny says: “’Surrender to Putin’. That seems to better describe this article. The Pravda never died. It found reincarnation in the AC it seems.”

“Lenny”? Lenny Bruce?

#12 Comment By S On July 9, 2018 @ 1:32 pm

Nice article. I am not sure though why the Russians would be interested in US troop reduction in Afghanistan. The Soviet Union was allied with Najibullah’s government but both those governments are long gone.

#13 Comment By John S On July 9, 2018 @ 1:56 pm

I prefer to read foreign policy analysis from foreign policy experts rather than from artists. Artists should make art.

#14 Comment By Kurt Gayle On July 9, 2018 @ 1:57 pm

A great essay, Mr. O’Neill. Five stars! You deserve a lot of credit. And you correctly anticipated the sorry, sad, sick suggestions of some commentors: That you’re naive, you’re a Kremlin apologist, blah, blah, blah. Sometimes this left-right-left-right “New Cold War” beat makes me feel like I’m still back in the ’50s and ’60s. (The New Cold War! God, I thought we were done with all that!)

#15 Comment By Stephen J. On July 9, 2018 @ 2:12 pm

The writer states: “Our NATO clients are afraid of carrying their own national defense burdens.” The price is 2% to join the “NATO” war club.
——-

July 9, 2018
“2% Is The Price”

2% of GDP is the price for bombing, destroying, and killing
That gets you membership in the “coalition of the willing”
Blood money that pays for death and destruction
2% gets member countries a piece of the bloody war action

2% is the price that leaves men, women, and children dead
2% can also create millions of refugees, who have fled
Trying to escape the hell, 2% GDP paid for, and created
Having to escape their countries; destroyed and desecrated

2% gets membership privileges in the billion dollar war palace
A place that plots and plans for invasions, with eager malice
Wreckers and destroyers of countries: This is their Headquarters
Are killing, bombing and destroying, dangerous mental disorders?

Still, nice uniforms and plenty of missiles and weapons
2% GDP pays for all their much needed outfits and aggression
The result of all this 2% GDP for wars and savagery
Causes millions of deaths, and for the living victims, misery

Will the people whose taxes pay for warring and killing
And training and supporting terrorists, for whom they get the billing
Will they ever wake up, and start to think, and maybe realize
That they could be paying for treason, and treachery in disguise

2% of their tax monies can be financing terrorists and both sides in wars
They, the taxpayers, are the paymasters for all the blood and gore
Treachery and treason is camouflaged by those in the halls of power
And 2% of the peoples’ taxes pay for this Nato-rious warmongering shower

If only this 2% of GDP was used for peaceful aims
Millions would still be alive, not victims of the insane
Some countries would still be whole, that surely would be nice
Unfortunately, 2% of GDP for war and violence, is an abominable price

[Much more info on this at link below]
[2]

#16 Comment By Minnesota Mary On July 9, 2018 @ 2:20 pm

The Neocons on the right and the left, along with their fellow travelers in the news media, are worried that Putin will give Trump a little history lesson with facts that Trump’s advisors have never told him. Best thing Trump can do is meet privately with Putin and not let his handlers in the room. If Trump is smart he will realize that Putin is more truthful than Trump’s Neocon advisors.

#17 Comment By One Guy On July 9, 2018 @ 2:25 pm

“The American people are not fooled by false claims…”

That’s beyond funny. Enough American people were fooled by Trump’s false claims that they elected him president. Many are still fooled by his false claims.

The author uses a technique popular with politicians: He claims that “the American people” want thus and so, when in fact, the American people either don’t care or want the opposite. We, as a group, don’t care about the wars in Afghanistan, Iraq or Syria. If we did, we’d have made a big deal about them by now. What we do care about are the civilian jobs in defense plants.

#18 Comment By Will Harrington On July 9, 2018 @ 2:26 pm

Lenny

Funny you should post that, when the major US media are owned by what? Six, or is it five now, corporations, who also are major donors to campaigns, I think you have misidentified where the current Pravda is located.

#19 Comment By Donald On July 9, 2018 @ 10:46 pm

Your ideas are fine, but I doubt they have much relationship with what Trump will actually do.

#20 Comment By Greg On July 10, 2018 @ 12:19 am

“The writer is using exactly same verbiage that these folks used to excuse everything the Soviets did, and blame it on the US.”

Retrospectively they likely were more often right than wrong.

#21 Comment By Clay Williams On July 10, 2018 @ 5:04 am

My god.The author of this delusional reverie actually says Trump has brought “denuclearization and pacification” to the Korean peninsula so why not trust him to do the same with Putin.

Then he says taking children away from immigrant mothers and sending them to internment camps is, you know, kinda’ like parents of American soldiers being “separated” from their soldier sons and daughters be sent abroad.

That’s so flat-out stupid I had to read it twice to be sure any adult humanoid not named “Hannity” could really be so flat-out stupid – check!

Who is this clown? Some 14-yr old Trump nephew? Sara Huckabee’s manicurist? Where does The American Conservative find contributors this silly?

#22 Comment By didi On July 10, 2018 @ 8:43 am

Of course if you do not consider the dicking with Iran and Venezuela, or the incessant bombing in Syria and Afghanistan to be war then we are on the road to peace.

#23 Comment By Making Waves On July 10, 2018 @ 9:34 am

Ending the pointless bleeding of Americans in Afghanistan wouldn’t be doing Russia any favors. Ending the illegal, unauthorized US military presence in Syria would make Russians happier, but means little if the allies we arm continue destabilizing Syria covertly (Saudi Arabia and Israel). And respecting the choice of the voters in Crimea isn’t a capitulation to Russia, it would be honoring Democracy. In theory that’s something America would be eager to do. Not in practice it seems.

#24 Comment By rta On July 10, 2018 @ 10:18 am

Trump’s next “bold peace initiative” should be to get the US back to recognizing the JCPOA and stop being the lapdog of Israel.

#25 Comment By eric On July 10, 2018 @ 11:02 am

Trump is a loose canon I don’t believe he is even a very well read man . He operates on instincts But his instincts are fairly good . So he calls a lot of shots right on target . That is something are last few presidents did not do They would rather be politically correct than correct .Maybe Trump will be able to do what Russia’s president Gorbachef was hoping to accomplish with president Reagan . Gorbachoff was hoping Russia and the United could work together and accomplish a lot of Christian things in the world such as ending starvation and hunger while promoting peace and brotherhood .After all Russia and the USA are the to most Christian countries in the world We rejected Gorbachoff dream and instead tried to do what Hitler tried to Russia ..

#26 Comment By Lenny (not Lenny Bruce) On July 10, 2018 @ 12:47 pm

I bet many posters here had a very good 4th of July, waved few flags before spreading their pro Putin propaganda and delusional wishful thinking on these pages

Putin hates America and you are his useful …well you know

#27 Comment By Dan Good On July 10, 2018 @ 12:59 pm

“President Trump should propose a drawdown of American troops in Afghanistan in exchange for a drawdown of Russian troops in Syria” Why would Putin care about American troops in Afghanistan which are making the US look like idiots with every passing year? There really are no “concessions” for Putin to make and it is strange that he even agreed to see Trump. Maybe he is just being polite and will take the opportunity to once again air the numerous Russian grievances, starting with the preposterous election meddling. The idea that Putin can “bargain” with Trump or vice versa is ludicrous.

#28 Comment By AriusArmenian On July 10, 2018 @ 2:54 pm

A good article that must get really under the skin of the CIA, neocons, neolibs, and Ukrainian and other East European fascists.

Let’s throw out of the US the dual passport holders and others with undue influence over US foreign policy from the UK, Israel, and Saudi Arabia.

Let’s cut military spending by 50% (why not 75%? – who can invade the US?) and close US foreign military bases.

Perish the thought the US would have to share the world with the EU, Russia, China, and Iran. Even North Korea. We can’t have the US cooperating peacefully with the rest of the world according to the supremacist warmongers.

#29 Comment By rta On July 10, 2018 @ 4:11 pm

@ eric, We Atheists aren’t crazy about starvation or war either. Just thought I’d let you know.

#30 Comment By cka2nd On July 10, 2018 @ 5:09 pm

DR says: “Are there still US troops in Syria?”

Approximately 2,000, as of April, per USA Today. For an interesting photo essay from only last week, see [3].

DR says: “Fighting what war, exactly?”

Bombing both ISIS and the Syrian army, depending on what day you inquire, it seems to me.

#31 Comment By cka2nd On July 10, 2018 @ 5:25 pm

Michael Kenny says: “The standard ‘let Putin win in Ukraine’ argument. The author clearly believes that Putin cannot win unless the US capitulates to him (I’m sure that’s right!), so he is seeking to persuade his fellow Americans to submit voluntarily to a humiliating defeat, probably the most humiliating defeat the US has ever suffered in its history.”

Russia holding onto the Crimea would be “probably the most humiliating defeat the US has ever suffered in its history”?!? As opposed to the British burning down Washington, D.C. (actually, T.C., at the time)? The Japanese bombing Pearl Harbor? Iranians holding American embassy staff for 444 days? Any one of the many Union losses suffered at the hands of Robert E. Lee and his Army of Northern Virginia? You, sir, are either profoundly ignorant of American history or utterly delusional.

#32 Comment By Antiwar7 On July 10, 2018 @ 8:37 pm

Well-written. And the author is a Rockefeller! Can’t he get his way?

#33 Comment By Georgina Davenport On July 11, 2018 @ 8:42 am

I was reading until I came to a screeching halt at the part ” failing Trump-Russia hysteria”. By this, the author lost all credibility with me.

Also, I do not think the presence of Russian troops in Syria is the reason why the US troops are there, or that is tge problem in Syria.

The problem is that Russia is not using its influence on Syria the way the West would–to force Assas to not commit atrocity on its own people.

The Syrian people are not being jailed and killed by the Russians but their own government and own military.

#34 Comment By Georgina Davenport On July 11, 2018 @ 8:53 am

“”Obama plus” trillion dollar program”-where did this come from?

The current nuclear arm race that Trump started is entirely his, do not blame it on Obama. As one on the Left, I am always willing and wanting to hear perspectives from the Right or anywhere for my main concern is finding workable solutions for our problems. But please start with reality as it is and not a make up version of your own.

Given all the lies Trump and his administration have already told, why does the author choose to believe them, rather than our professional and experienced intelligence services, on the issue of Russian interferences on our election?

#35 Comment By Wizard On July 11, 2018 @ 10:30 am

Michael Kenny, your argument seems a bit contradictory. How, exactly, is NOT interfering in other countries’ affairs demanding that the world “kowtow to the US”?

As for Ukraine, the US is not really in any position to intervene, and I’ve seen no sign that the major European powers are either able or willing to do so. Short of going directly to war with Russia, how do you propose we “defeat” Putin? Dragging the US into another unnecessary and probably unwinnable war, now that would be truly humiliating.

#36 Comment By Wizard On July 11, 2018 @ 10:32 am

Embassy and consulate staff were defenestrated? Man, that seems a bit harsh.

#37 Comment By Bill On July 11, 2018 @ 10:48 am

“The American people are not fooled by false claims that Trump is soft on terrorism; they are aware that U.S. military interventions oftentimes can—and do—fuel terrorism.”
This doesn’t take into consideration that U.S. military interventions are considered to be terrorism by the people who live in the countries invaded and occupied.

#38 Comment By sglover On July 11, 2018 @ 11:10 am

The return of the possibility of civilian travel between the two nations would do wonders to lower tensions.

Uhhh — what?!?! When has this not been possible? Hell, I visited Moscow & St. Petersburg last November without a problem, beyond the rather convoluted Russian visa process. Does TAC pay by the fabrication, now, instead of the word?

The naysayers ridiculed Trump’s peace initiative with North Korea, and yet his denuclearization and pacification of the Korean Peninsula advances (in contrast to the efforts of four previous American presidential administrations).

This is parallel universe reality. If the “initiative” goes anywhere at all — a huge “if” right there — it’s almost certain to converge on the same solution that Clinton negotiated about a quarter-century ago, now.

We hear stories about parents being separated from their children at our borders, but not a peep about the American children being separated from their soldier parents and parents being separated from their soldier sons and daughters abroad.

This might be the most lame, strained analogy I’ve seen this year. It adds absolutely nothing to whatever argument O’Neill thinks he’s constructing. It seems to be some kind of misfired attempt at distraction. Fundamentally dishonest, in any case.

Once again TAC’s editors embarrass themselves. Do they actually edit anything?!?!

#39 Comment By olde reb On July 11, 2018 @ 11:32 am

The writer wants to end all the US wars??? WHAT ??? And end the march to the NWO ??? Oh my ! !

#40 Comment By olde reb On July 11, 2018 @ 11:43 am

The soviets immobilized a US destroyer in the black sea. China surfaced a submarine from under a US super aircraft carrier. And we are considering going to war with them ??

#41 Comment By General Manager On July 11, 2018 @ 12:32 pm

Peace is better than war. A trade war is more preferable to a shooting war. If we can slow down China’s GDP growth we will put pressure on their defense budget. Fewer toys/gizmos for the U.S. and fewer rockets and planes for China. Keep the pressure on the U.S. manufacturers to stay at home and keep jobs here.

#42 Comment By Kurt Gayle On July 12, 2018 @ 11:29 am

Wow! Some pretty venomous attacks on Mr. O’Neill from commenters who appear to have either (1) badly misjudged where O’Neill is coming from or (2) are busily trying to resurrect the Cold War.

In fairness, please check out this George D. O’Neill Jr. web page. Mr. O’Neill seems pretty much in line with the foreign policy principles on which The American Conservative was founded.

Seriously, give this page a quick look/read:

[4]

#43 Comment By cka2nd On July 12, 2018 @ 2:36 pm

Georgina Davenport says: “The problem is that Russia is not using its influence on Syria the way the West would–to force Assas to not commit atrocity on its own people.”

As someone who claims to be “on the Left,” please let this Trotskyist of over 30 year’s standing give you a piece of advice. Before you say something like “the West would force X to not commit atrocities on his or her own people” again, read about human rights in Columbia, a close ally of the United States and now an official partner of NATO, in particular about the assassinations of union and peasant leaders. Read about the domestic human rights records of Rwanda and Egypt, Saudi Arabia, The UAE and Bahrain, not to mention the conduct of Rwanda in the Congo and the rest of them in Yemen. Read about Honduras and the 2009 coup supported by Hilary Clinton and the Obama Administration. Read about Israel and its conduct towards the Palestinians living under Israeli occupation or, in the case of Gaza, what I suppose can be best described as blockade and imprisonment.

Then, read about the justifications that the US and its Western allies used to invade Iraq and bomb Libya, and the impact of said interventions. I’d also recommend Diana Johnstone’s book on Yugoslavia; she’s been a superb international reporter for democratic socialist news outlets for 40 or more years.

You don’t need to become experts on these subjects, and left sources like CounterPunch and Jacobin will publish starkly different analyses of places like Venezuela and Nicaragua, but you need to open your eyes about the conduct of “the West” in foreign affairs.

#44 Comment By morganB On July 14, 2018 @ 1:20 pm

Combat strength with strength. Putin told the world that he has developed a missile that thwarts any attempt to bring it down. That could mean that Russia could bring us to our knees by destroying out electric grids. WOW!