On the campaign trail, President Donald Trump proposed policies to re-work American foreign policies to put America’s interest first beginning with walling our southern border at Mexico’s expense. The Mexican president had a belly laugh and declared zero financial responsibility for the project. Trump promptly reversed the $25 billion cost to the American government; i.e. American taxpayers and in upside down talk declared Mexico will pay up in the future.
Trump promised to re-negotiate NAFTA, our trade agreement with Mexico and Canada, but reversed course when he learned of the damage to American interests associated with un-doing NAFTA. He subsequently learned that the Mexican government partners with U.S. border patrols in trying to prevent unsanctioned border crossings and also cooperates with U.S. counter-terrorism agencies. He now understands that the Mexican government has been our good friend and trading partner. So, the NAFTA project was sent to the back burner and there it remains indefinitely.
In the name of America first, Trump told South Korea to pay the $1 billion cost for our installment of the THAAD missile defense system aimed to deter military action from North Korea. The South Koreans hit the streets en masse to demand of American to stick to its contracted agreement to pay for the system. So, Trump reversed positions and accepted the $1 billion cost for the THAAD missile installation on South Korean soil.
Next move for Trump was to invite North Korean President Kim Jong-un to a tete à tete to discuss America’s disapproval of North Korean militarism. Trump announced his belief that he would be “honored” to meet Mr. Kim in person. Kim declined to reply to Trump’s warm invitation to a pow-wow.
Trump promised to undo the Iran deal of lifting sanctions in return for Iran halting nuclear weapons development under strict international inspections. In office, Trump discovered that Iran is at war with ISIS as is the United States, so the Iran deal stays in force in order not to antagonize an ally in fighting ISIS.
Trump denounced China as a currency manipulator and of harming the U.S. economy. He also promised to use his powerful negotiating prowess to strong-arm China into pressuring North Korea to cease and desist nuclear testing and to mitigate its hostility to South Korea. In this negative mind-set on China, Trump acknowledged the President of Taiwan in a direct telephone call, apparently un-doing America’s 70 year one-China policy.
We all know of Trump’s effusive praise of Russian President Putin that has soured after Trump discovered Russia’s adversarial behavior in East Ukraine, Crimea, Syria. He just didn’t know about Russian geopolitics until recent days.
We also remember how Trump declared NATO obsolete pre-election and how he reversed course and announced our strong involvement in the NATO alliance including the continuation of financial participation at current levels despite his earlier complaint that NATO countries were bilking us and making us pay for their share in the organization.
What about the federal court’s reversal of Trump’s executive order to ban travelers from seven Muslim majority nations on suspicion of hostile intentions towards the United States. Not one of the citizens from the banned countries has committed an act of terror on U.S. soil; in contrast, the Muslim countries whose citizens have committed atrocities such as 9/11 and the 1993 attack on the World Trade Tower were not banned. Saudi Arabian, Kuwaiti, Egyptian citizens were responsible for terror in the U.S., but Trump apparently was not aware of their national origins, so their home countries were not included in the ban. In any case, a federal judge ruled the ban unconstitutional, so the ban went away.
Other issues of concern: the promise to improve American health care system when the American Medical Association denounced his replacement plan as disastrous for at least 30 percent of the country; Trump’s reputed indebtedness to Russian oligarchs as financial partners has yet to be clarified to American citizens.
Just now, we hear that FBI Director James Comey got fired as he was in the process of unlayering Trump’s highly questionable connection to Russian money.
What grade will we give him after 200 days in office?