a Trump administration staffer who reviewed a draft of the document—and shared key excerpts with me—describes it as “divorced from the reality” of Trump’s presidency.
.. A few classically Trumpian themes are there—the wall, concern over trade imbalances—but much of the document reflects the values and priorities of the president’s predecessors.
.. These discrepancies render the document practically meaningless—enough so that it’s likely to be “widely ignored,”
.. In the end, Trump’s actions will matter far more than his words. And no matter how much fanfare this strategy document gets, foreign governments will likely continue to take their cues from the president himself... broken into four pillars:
- defending the homeland,
- American prosperity,
- advancing American influence, and
- peace through strength.
.. It was spearheaded by Nadia Schadlow, senior director for strategy on the National Security Council (NSC). Schadlow is regarded as a conservative foreign-policy expert based on her experience in the establishment think-tank world, including stints at the Council on Foreign Relations and the Smith Richardson Foundation. She joined the NSC at Lieutenant General H.R. McMaster’s request
.. a section on promoting the rule of law is undermined by Trump’s own persistent attacks on the U.S. judicial system.
.. Trump’s NSS, like Obama’s, identifies the security of the U.S. homeland, particularly against terrorist threats and weapons of mass destruction, as a priority;
- both recognize that promoting economic prosperity is core to sustained U.S. global leadership;
- both highlight the value of preserving an open and liberal international order that has often times benefited the United States; and
- both underscore the importance of preserving core American principles and values.
.. The draft NSS also highlights “enhanced intelligence sharing domestically and with foreign partners” as a priority for disrupting terror plots. But Trump, through his own words and actions, has done much to undermine these relationships.
.. once accused the British intelligence agency, GCHQ, of helping the Obama administration wiretap Trump when he was running for president
.. He has undermined the rule of law repeatedly, personally attacking specific judges, the federal judiciary more broadly, as well as the FBI, the Justice Department and their leaders, some of whom he picked.
.. there’s been too much in the past year designed to stoke fear and sow schisms to make credible language of unity, however much I do crave such unity.”
.. Another classically ‘Trumpian’ theme is the idea that, while the liberal international order has helped advance U.S. interests in some cases, it has also hurt the United States.