The Skeptics

America Has Too Many Military Bases

Members of Congress have a hard time agreeing on virtually anything, and they’re already butting heads with the new president. But one issue should unite them: a new initiative to shrink the Pentagon’s massive overhead.

President Trump and Secretary of Defense James Mattis have pledged to cut waste. And key leaders in Congress have renewed their calls for rationalizing the Pentagon’s base structure. Now is the time for Congress to come together, put the national interest over parochial interests and finally support a new round of base closings.

Secretary Mattis Should Stop Babying South Korea

Candidate Donald Trump caused tremors in South Korea when he criticized America’s security commitment. Although far wealthier and more populous than the North, Seoul has grown comfortable being protected by Washington. The possibility of having to do more in their own defense shocked South Koreans who preferred to invest their money elsewhere for fun and profit.

Is Stephen Miller Serving Trump Well?

Television host Joe Scarborough recently said that Stephen Miller, President Donald Trump’s thirty-one-year-old policy director, appears to be on a “power trip.” Washington insider Mike Allen reports that “White House and Hill GOP leaders are astonished by the unambiguous, far-reaching power of Steve Bannon and policy guru Stephen Miller over, well, just about everything.”

What Trump Has in Common with the Last German Emperor

President Donald Trump appears sui generis. Other troublesome populists, like Rodrigo Duterte of the Philippines, hold power. But no other nation of great influence is governed by someone so little rooted in reality and so much dominated by personality.

However, the president has a historical soul mate who ruled a century ago. The similarities are striking, though their lives obviously differed in important ways. One wonders: was the German Empire’s Kaiser Wilhelm II reincarnated as President Trump?

Is North Korea's Military the Ultimate Paper Tiger (That Could Still Kill Millions)?

Iran’s regional aggression. Budget turmoil at home. Domestic politics. An establishment in Washington resistant to reform. Ongoing wars in Iraq, Syria and Afghanistan. President-elect Donald Trump will have all of this to focus on and more, including the possibility of a Republican Party—a party that, let’s be honest, wasn’t especially happy that Trump won the GOP nomination—opposing a Trump White House on the construction of a border wall and on a trillion-dollar infrastructure plan.

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