By Justin Raimondo | 17 September 2018
ANTIWAR — The Woodward book is supposed to be a blow against the Trump administration for supposedly depicting an administration in “chaos,” but it actually manages to show the foreign policy aspect of Trump’s White House in its best light, albeit unintentionally. Woodward, being the swamp-creature that he is, uncritically cites administration officials who denounce Trump’s Singapore peace initiative with North Korea as prima facie evidence that the man is unhinged. This is the conventional wisdom inside the Washington Beltway: out in the real world, however, Trump’s view is evidence of his sanity. While the political class is worried that declaring the Korean war over and done with will pull the plug on the US military occupation of South Korea – a possibility Woodward conjures as a kind of Armageddon — normal Americans are hoping to see the troops come home after nearly 70 years!
Despite dire predictions by hysterics on both sides of the political spectrum, Trump hasn’t started any new wars and seems determined to dial down those already in progress. The most visible conflict now seems to be the war for the President’s mind, which pits the most consistent advocate of promiscuous intervention, Sen. Lindsey Graham, against Trump’s most recent (and surprising) ally, Sen. Rand Paul. These two are competing for the President’s ear, and the winner looks to be:
“[I]f Graham has tried to wield his influence with Trump to pull the trigger on more foreign interventions, Paul has wished to influence Trump in the polar-opposite direction. Unfortunately for the hawkish Graham, it appears at least some of Paul’s ideas have rubbed off on the president.”
It’s a tug of war, and Lindsey is losing:
“In defending his approach to Russian President Vladimir Putin and other repressive leaders, Trump has in recent months expressed to those close to him a sympathy for Paul’s non-intervention streak, stressing how American politicians of both parties want to recklessly start ‘World War III,’ if only to stick it to Putin or Assad.
“Trump has then, in the same breath, praised more dovish Republicans such as ‘Rand, [who] won’t let that happen,’ and will help keep America from slipping into another quagmire or major war, according to a source familiar with Trump’s private comments.”
As I’ve said in this space before, Rand Paul has really grown into his role as the antiwar conscience of the Senate. Yesterday he was an over-ambitious (and overly cautious) rookie: today he’s a statesman and a real factor in determining the course of US foreign policy. This sea change shows not only high intelligence, but also displays real courage – because the libertarian base, insofar as the organized libertarian movement in concerned, is largely clueless when it comes to what attitude to take toward Trump. […]