mandag 6. februar 2017

US defence secretary tries to calm Asian jitters – but is undermined at every turn

The job of US defence secretary is a demanding one at the best of times. But for James Mattis, a former Marine Corps general, the problems are not confined to Iraq, Afghanistan and Isis. One of the biggest challenges facing the Pentagon’s new chief lurks in the White House, just across the Potomac river. His name is Donald Trump. 
Mattis made his first overseas trip as “defsec” last week, and his choice of destination was instructive. Rather than visiting the Middle East or Nato allies in Europe, he travelled to South Korea and Japan. During his presidential campaign, Trump alarmed both countries by demanding that they pay more for their own defence and even acquire nuclear weapons. Read more