FROM James Kraska
Drones, tweets, and the new US-China rivalry China has returned the US naval drone it seized five days earlier in the open waters of the South China Sea -- and got a lashing by President-elect Trump on Twitter. Trump has already irked America's rival superpower by breaking protocol and speaking with Taiwan's President, challenging the "One China" rule, and talking about trade tariffs. Is the drone incident a test of an incoming administration bent on challenging China on trade, or a troubling sign of Chinese aggression in the South China Sea? Even some foreign policy experts skeptical of President Trump say it's high time Washington took a tougher stance with Beijing. So what does the incident tell us about the future of the US-China relationship with a Russia-friendly, unpredictable and confrontation-prone leader in the White House.
The Trump agenda: where's the beef? President Trump says big things are happening. After celebrating a House bill on health care, he doesn’t yet have Senate agreement. With James Comey’s public testimony scheduled tomorrow, the President today tweeted his selection of a new FBI Director. Is the Chief Executive all style and no substance? Later, terror attacks in Iran and conflicting claims about who’s behind them.
Trump plays scolder-in-chief with NATO allies At the opening of NATO’s dramatic new headquarters in Brussels today, President Trump acknowledged that Article 5 — promising that “an attack on one nation is an attack on all” -- has only been invoked one time: in the aftermath of September 11. But the President failed to provide what 27 other Alliance members have been waiting for: a re-commitment by America’s new leader to Article 5. Instead, they got a scolding.
What happens when America retreats from the world? Is President Trump taking his "America First" agenda to extremes, withdrawing the country from the international stage on trade and climate change, distancing America from its traditional allies across the Atlantic and even threatening to physically isolate the country through the building of a wall along its southern border? León Krauze guest hosts.