Trump’s Chaos is Covering for Stealth Escalation Overseas | WHAT REALLY HAPPENED


Trump’s Chaos is Covering for Stealth Escalation Overseas

The escalation directly contradicts Trump’s stances during the election campaign. Back then, he indicated his skepticism of regime change, claiming — falsely — that he had opposed the Iraq invasion and denouncing the intervention in Libya. He indicated that he saw no reason to take sides in the Syrian civil war, suggesting that perhaps the United States could join with Syria and its ally Russia to take out the Islamic State. He promised he would “bomb the s--- out of ISIS” but would not get bogged down in the Middle East. This stance appealed strongly to voters weary of war and looking for a leader who would focus on our challenges here at home. That promise has now clearly been trashed.

The escalation is also striking for the absence of any discernible strategy. It suffers less from strategic incoherence than from strategic vacuum. We’ve been in Afghanistan for 16 years, expending thousands of lives and almost a trillion dollars without being able to create a government that would defend itself, yet the Taliban now controls more territory than it did before the last surge under President Barack Obama. In Syria, the United States appears to be gearing up to take on the brutal Assad regime but has neither the plan nor the will to displace him. Adding troops in either area only ensures that the conflicts will go on without end and without victory. As a candidate, Trump certainly would have mocked the gestures as part of a “dumb war.”

The escalation is also flagrant in its illegality — both under U.S. law and under international law.

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