Yesterday we pointed out the reasons why the New York Times was making up ridiculous claims about President Trump replacing Secretary of State Rex Tillerson – SEE HERE –
Additionally, if you expand the Trump/Tillerson geopolitical strategy circle of administration officials to include: U.N. Ambassador Nikki Haley, Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, Defense Secretary James Mattis and Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross, you really begin to see the most effective foreign policy team we have ever seen.
The Trump Doctrine is a brilliant geopolitical strategy of using economics to create national security outcomes favorable to the U.S., without having to use blood to achieve results. The effectiveness of the approach embarrasses decades of professional diplomats who have been incapable of achieving results as purposeful as President Trump.
It’s both the pride and jealousy of lesser effective people that forms the basis of their antagonism toward President Trump and Secretary Tillerson.
To fully conceptualize the strategic policies of the Trump Doctrine in action it’s useful to see the fuller scope of everything. Action does not happen in a vacuum. In the multidimensional economic-security approach, all of the economic cabinet officials play a critical role especially Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin.
As an example, the sanctions against Venezuela, while targeted, are only one small outcropping of a much larger geopolitical strategy that U.S. President Trump initiated for the past ten months with jaw-dropping success:
From OPEC (Saudi Summit) to the EU and Baltic States (Poland Pre-G20); to North African energy development via President Macron (Libya and Mali); to walking away from the Paris Climate agreement; to discussions with Theresa May on a bilateral trade deal; to massive shipments of coal to U.K. and France; to closing a deal to deliver Ireland massive amounts of Texas LNG; to our own internal U.S. energy production policy with pipelines, Oil, Coal and Liquified Natural Gas (LNG) etc.
President Trump has used all of those “allied” relationships to lower global energy prices.
The bigger part of the ‘big-missed-picture‘ was how that energy strategy impacted adversaries like Russia, Iran, China and more recently Venezuela; while simultaneously supporting the larger America-First economic and geopolitical goals.
President Trump thinks seriously long-term, and really BIG picture.
Global energy, mostly oil, fuels the expansionist and interventionist structure that builds the very foundation of our geopolitical adversaries’ ability to continue their global influence. Diminish the value of oil and Donald Trump puts the squeeze on the financial resources of those nations dependent on energy as income.
Most of our current geopolitical adversaries Russia, Iran and Venezuela are dependent on high energy prices. Secondly, the downstream economic adversaries are dependent on high energy prices to maintain their economic position and alliances. As examples: China (as a geopolitical influence agent), and Mexico (as a NAFTA trade parasite), hold adverse interests to the U.S. on trade.
President Trump, by pressuring global energy prices downward, has fractured the ability of energy producing nations to influence their own geopolitical strategy. Trump has diminished their most powerful tool.
As a consequence, economic adversaries like China are put into a position of having to spend more money, directly, to aid their allies and to maintain their influence.
Think about how much financial strain is on China currently. North Korea is entirely financially dependent on China; Pakistan is financially dependent on China’s continued investment; Mexico is financially dependent on Chinese investment; Venezuela is dependent on Chinese loans and oil purchases; etc., etc. the list goes on. The Trump Doctrine is confronting these relationships through economics. Each of these relationships is bleeding out money from China.
Conversely, on the income side of China’s ledgers, they are dependent on manufacturing and trade to keep their revenue stream viable. The Trump Doctrine of renegotiated trade relationships is also confronting China on the revenue side. China needs our market to sell their goods; China is dependent on access to the U.S. $20 trillion trade market.
See the squeeze?
The Trump Doctrine of using economic strategy is forcing China to spend more and yet simultaneously they are facing less income. And remember, as a combined result of their dependency on international trade and a trade surplus with the U.S., China’s central bank vault holds “dollars”.
China’s #1 threat, if you want to call it that, would be to dump dollars to retaliate against what President Trump is doing. However, if the value of the dollar drops, China has less value in their vault, and a lower dollar actually helps our exports.
It’s a three way geopolitical and financial squeeze.
Now, back to Venezuela – The United States was the only remaining cash purchaser of Venezuela oil. Both China and Russia purchase Maduro’s oil, however their current purchases are/were all made as offsets, repayments, for prior loans. It doesn’t generate additional revenue for Maduro if China and Russia do purchase more oil, it only pays down the Venezuelan debt.
♦When the threat is Sunni Extremism, the problem was/is the Muslim Brotherhood and the enabling of Qatar. Trump assigned responsibility for solving that issue to Saudi Arabia and the Gulf Cooperation Council. It is the GCC who are confronting Qatar, not the United States.
♦When the threat is Syria’s chemical weapon, the problem was/is the Assad regime and ISIS. Trump assigned responsibility for solving that issue to Russia; Russia initially refused to solve it, so Trump bombed the shit out of Assad – Russia/Assad took ownership, the chemical weapon use stopped; further action was not needed by the United States.
♦When the threat is DPRK’s nuclear weapons, the problem was/is Kim Jong-un and the enabling China. Trump assigned responsibility for solving that immediate threat to China. It was Beijing who is working to get Kim Jong-un to stand down. Not just the United States.