Ivo Daalder, senior fellow at the Brookings Institution, David Keene, chairman of the American Conservative Union, and Dana Milbank, White House reporter for the Washington Post, discuss what to expect in domestic and foreign policy under President Bush’s next four years.
In President Bush’s acceptance speech, he spoke of reaching out to Democrats, however, Bush has come out of the election feeling vindicated in his strategy over the past four years, and he will only reach out on his own terms. Bush believes in having political capital in order to spend it and he plans to be bold in early and bold on domestic reforms. The Bush Administration will almost certainly follow a similar course in Afghanistan, providing just enough support to keep an even keel but not enough to really move the country into a different phase. In Iraq, Bush will most likely attempt to go after insurgent strongholds, particularly in Falluja, in hopes that a decisive win there will disperse insurgents enough to allow for elections in January.
[U.S.] is not [sending] a unified message [on North Korea]: It is the leaders of two different departments pursuing two distinctive approaches, which contradict each other. Treasury believes that squeezing China [and penalizing Chinese banks and firms] will compel China to turn up the heat on North Korea. I am not at all convinced that this will generate the responses from China that the U.S. wishes to see. Contrarily, State [Department] sees heightened cooperation with China as essential to curbing North Korea's nuclear and missile activities. The U.S. should not be imparting mixed messages to Pyongyang, and the Trump administration has exhibited very little message discipline in its North Korea policy.