The liberal commentary site, Think Progress, has jumped off the deep end with a new piece on President Trump's criticism of foreign nations.
Posted on Wednesday, the article by E.A. Crunden argues that "Trump's Twitter tirades aren't boding well for 2018."
Yet even for Think Progress, which doesn't exactly have a great record of hot takes on foreign policy, this piece is particularly weird.
Crunden begins by lamenting Trump's criticism of Iranian thuggery. You know, that thuggery which is currently playing out in the slaughter of young Iranians who are protesting for basic rights and progress. You might think that a liberal "progressive" institution with the name Think Progress might not be terribly favorable towards authoritarian theologians with a penchant for deep social conservatism and restricting female rights.
But oh no, instead, the thinkers of progress are upset that "Trump has repeatedly criticized the Iranian government ... U.S.-Iran relations are typically tense, something Trump’s presidency has only exacerbated...." Later, Crunden complains that "the president’s saber-rattling" is ongoing, Wednesday, in that he "again addressed demonstrations in Iran."
This is quite astonishing stuff. Regardless of the merits, or otherwise, of Trump associating the U.S. with the protesters (I think he's right to do so), Think Progress seriously seems to believe that we should all shut up and watch as this enemy crushes its people. It's both the height of appeasement and absolute moral cowardice. Franklin Delano Roosevelt and Harry Truman are turning over in their graves.
Continuing on, Crunden complains that Trump's counter-threats to North Korea "have gone over poorly," making Kim Jong Un more likely to attack the U.S. homeland. The dearth of broader strategic considerations here is quite remarkable. In this worldview, we should just sit back and allow the North Koreans to get nuclear warhead and ballistic missile capabilities.
Again, however, Think Progress has another gripe.
Trump is also wrong, says Crunden, for "provoking Pakistan" with his condemnation of that government's double-dealing with terrorists. This is ludicrous stuff: The Pakistani government continues to harbor, support, and direct terrorists in campaigns of violence against the U.S. and our allies. While Think Progress talks a lot about the Constitution (at least, the bits it likes), it seems to have forgotten that Trump has sworn a constitutional oath to protect the people. He deserves credit for finally call out Islamabad's malfeasance.
If this is progressive thinking on foreign policy, I'm firmly in favor of a retrograde approach.