President Trump and Secretary Tillerson are at odds on diplomacy between the U.S. and North Korea (Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, or DPRK). Secretary Tillerson emphasized that the US has “three channels open to Pyongyang,” and that the two sides are talking. President Trump says the secretary is “wasting his time,” causing other officials to reconcile the comments by stating that the US was getting impatient as lines of communication had been open for months. Regardless of the inconsistent messaging, these comments from Secretary Tillerson are a significant signal that reveals overlooked opportunities for a “humanitarian channel” of engagement between the two countries.
Earlier this summer, the administration also acknowledged that the direct line of communication, which facilitated the release of imprisoned UVA student Otto Warmbier, remained open after his return. The direct line between the DPRK ambassador to the UN Pak Song II and the US Special Representative for North Korea Policy Joseph Yun is the only confirmed direct channel of communication between the two countries. However, the implication of Tillerson’s comments is that he may be counting indirect or unofficial lines of communication as “channels.” These indirect lines likely include communication between former US officials or veterans of the US foreign policy corps and their North Korean contacts.
Now that ISIS is all but defeated in Syria, with ISIS control of Raqqa having been ended just last week, why is the US military not going home? After all, that is the mission that was given the military by President Obama in 2014: defeat ISIS. But the US is not going home. In fact it is expanding its presence in Syria and is not about to leave Iraq. Rules of engagement have been loosened, airstrikes have increased. Are the neocons going to “remake the Middle East” yet again? This and more in today’s Ron Paul Liberty Report:
The horrific truck bomb in Mogadishu last weekend was apparently a retaliation over a US special forces-led attack on a Somali village where at least ten civilians were killed. The truck bomber was a native of the village. Why is the US fighting in Somalia? To keep an Islamist movement with no international reach or ambition (thus far) from seizing power. What does continued US military action in Somalia produce? An enraged population ever more determined to seek revenge against the US. Does anyone think this is making us safer? The full story in today’s Ron Paul Liberty Report:
The United States has spent tens of billions of dollars training the Iraqi army over the past 14 years. It’s also spent close to a billion dollars training the Kurdish Peshmerga fighters in northern Iraq. Now, with the independence referendum passing in Iraqi Kurdistan and the resulting crackdown by Baghdad, we have the US-backed Iraqi army confronting the US-backed Kurdish Peshmerga fighters. Who’s happy? The weapons dealers! This is the folly of an interventionist foreign policy laid bare. What’s next? Tune in to today’s Ron Paul Liberty Report:
President Trump’s Iran policy speech on Friday was riddled with errors – the kinds of errors the neocons have been peddling for more than a decade. He did not out and out cancel the US participation in the Iran nuclear deal with claims that Iran has violated the agreement. Everyone knows – and it has been repeatedly certified – that Iran has not violated the terms of the 2015 agreement. Instead he claimed that Iran is not living up to the spirit of the agreement and punted the issue down to Congress – against the advice of most of his senior staff. Will Washington’s allies follow suit? Will the deal fall apart? What will Iran do if it is no longer bound by the nuclear-limiting treaty? Will President Trump follow his neocon whisperers down the path that George W. Bush followed in 2003 – to war? Tune in to today’s Ron Paul Liberty Report: