Chaos Looms?

In the US, the prospect of chaos looms as a result of three foreign policy decisions.  First Pres. Trump quite rightly challenged China over its unfair economic practices, using tariffs to protect its industries while expecting the US and other countries to drop all tariffs under international agreements.  At first China seemed amenable, but now as it becomes more specific and US tariffs on many goods have shot up from 10% to 25% and Trump has targeted Huawei, the Chinese computer/telecommunications giant, over its sharing information with the Chinese Government, things have hotted up.  No one wants an economic war between the two largest economic powers in the world, but that is the way things are sliding.  This could mean ruin for many American and Chinese companies.  The Chinese are retaliating, but in this tariff war they are likely to lose.

In Venezuela, the US has put its support behind pseudo-President Guaido and has challenged the socialist Pres. Maduro, who has essentially ruined the whole country.  Venezuela went from being a prosperous country to being a desperately poor one, lacking food, water, medicines, electricity and all normal supplies.  Perhaps 8 million people have left the country, leaving neighboring Colombia with a serious refugee problem. But, with the support of most of the Army, Maduro was able to put down what he called “an attempted coup” and currently is in the process of arresting all opponents he can get his hands on.  The US has threatened to do something (even militarily), but what?

At the same time, the situation with Iran is hotting up, given that on the one year anniversary of the US leaving the Iran deal (JCPOA) Ayatollah Khamenei announced that unless the EU countries did something within 30 days, Iran will restart its nuclear weapons program, enriching uranium. Pres. Trump sent a large strike force to the Persian Gulf region.  As the sanctions bite on Iran it faces a hard choice, strike back or bite the bullet and retreat.   Neither seems likely.

Meanwhile in Britain, May’s time is over.  It was announced that after the next vote in the Commons on her proposal (that has essentially been defeated twice), she will resign.  She wanted to take Britain thru Brexit, but that now seems unlikely. She will stand down to allow another Conservative Party leader to emerge.  But, the Conservative Party is still as split over Brexit and it seems no one could lead it.  Further, Labor, which is just as split, will unfortunately reap the benefit of this Conservative mess.  The prospect of a hard-left Corbyn-led Labour Govt, in Britain hardly bears thinking about.  Chaos indeed!



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