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Is Trump’s Axis of Adults Beating Down the Cabal of Crazies?

Author: Max Boot, Jeane J. Kirkpatrick Senior Fellow for National Security Studies
April 18, 2017


Approaching his 100-day mark with little to show for it but a new Supreme Court justice, Donald Trump is shedding his past positions faster than a stock trader getting rid of underperforming stocks.

Syria? “Do NOT attack Syria,fix U.S.A.,” he tweeted in 2013. On April 6, Trump, of course, attacked Syria while criticizing former President Barack Obama for not having done so in 2013 — i.e., for not having acted in contravention of Trump’s advice at the time.

NATO? As recently as March 22, he said it was “obsolete, because it doesn’t cover terrorism.” On April 12, he declared, “They made a change, and now they do fight terrorism. I said it was obsolete. It’s no longer obsolete.” So NATO suddenly embraced counterterrorism in those three weeks? Hardly. It has been doing so since at least 2001.

China? As recently as April 2, Trump said, “When you talk about currency manipulation, when you talk about devaluations, they are world champions.” On April 12, however, he told the Wall Street Journal, “They’re not currency manipulators.”

In that same interview, he delivered an endorsement of Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen after having said last year that he would “most likely” not appoint her to another term. And an endorsement of the Export-Import Bank after having said in 2015, “I don’t like it because I don’t think it’s necessary.”

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