Before the start of business, Just Security provides a curated summary of up-to-the-minute developments at home and abroad. Here’s today’s news.
DONALD TRUMP’S FOREIGN POLICY
Trump will enter the White House tomorrow with most national security positions unfilled, threatening to cripple the incoming administration from the beginning and creating the risk that it will present confused or contradictory policies to the rest of the world, Dan De Luce and John Hudson observe at Foreign Policy.
The NATO mission will continue as the Trump administration takes office, Vice President-elect Mike Pence insisted following Trump’s comments that the transatlantic organization is “obsolete.” Mallory Shelbourne reports at the Hill.
Trump’s pick for UN ambassador departed from him on several foreign policy issues at her Senate confirmation hearing yesterday, voicing skepticism on Russia and optimism about NATO, Anne Gearan and Sean Sullivan report at the Washington Post.
NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg pushed back against Trump’s comments that the organization is “obsolete” yesterday, insisting that NATO is constantly evolving to meet security threats, Michael Birnbaum reports at the Washington Post.
The Iran nuclear deal is working and must be maintained. The UN, the EU and key players in the Iran nuclear deal delivered a united message to President-elect Donald Trump yesterday, Edith M. Lederer reports at the AP.
The US military is ready to present options to the new Trump administration to accelerate the fight against the Islamic State, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Marine Gen. Joseph Dunford told reporters including Julian E. Barnes at the Wall Street Journal.
The US can “be great again” if it shows leadership in a worldwide response to the cyber threat posed by Russia, Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko said yesterday, Stephen Adler and Sujata Rao reporting at Reuters.
The Senate Armed Services Committee overwhelmingly recommended that retired Gen. James Mattis be the next defense secretary yesterday, Jeremy Herb and Connor O’Brien report at POLITICO.
Sen. John McCain is still undecided whether he will support the nomination of Rex Tillerson as secretary of state, he said yesterday. POLITICO’s Burgess Everett reports.
Department of Energy head pick Rick Perry reportedly did not realize that the job involved maintaining the nation’s nuclear stockpile when he agreed to take it, Coral Davenport and David E. Sanger report at the New York Times.
Sanctions against Russia for its annexation of Crimea should remain tied to that issue and not be repealed in return for a reduction of nuclear arms as President-elect Trump suggested, President Obama said yesterday, Louis Nelson reporting at POLITICO.
Trump deserves the space to pursue his agenda, outgoing President Barack Obama said yesterday in his final scheduled news conference, while suggesting that he tread carefully on issues such as the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Carol E. Lee and Damian Paletta report at the Wall Street Journal.
An annotated version of Obama’s final press conference speech yesterday is provided at NPR.
The Obama administration has written 275 briefing papers for the incoming Trump administration including nearly 1,000 pages on North Korea, the military campaign against the Islamic State and tensions in the South China Sea, – and nobody knows whether anyone in Trump’s team has read them, Mark Landler writes at the New York Times.
Ten views from ten countries: CNN compiles the opinions on the incoming Trump administration from commentators from around the world.
European leaders’ insistence that the ties underpinning the world since World War II will endure in Trump’s new world order will be put to the test as “tweets and interviews turn into policy and action,” write Griff Witte, Michael Birnbaum and James McAuley at the Washington Post.
Trump will inherit a conflict in Afghanistan that is a “stalemate” after eight years of the Obama administration, write Greg Jaffe and Missy Ryan at the Washington Post, discussing how Trump might approach this particular foreign policy challenge.
Trump’s all-but-abandonment of human rights as a foreign policy principle has raised the prospect of once “unimaginable” alliances for some Middle Eastern countries, writes the AP. Continue Reading »