Home Contact Us  
   

US & South Asia - Articles

Print Bookmark Email Facebook Subscribe
#5283, 15 May 2017
 

Eagle Eye

100 Days in Office: The Trump Administration
Chintamani Mahapatra
Rector and Professor, JNU, & Columnist, IPCS
 

More than a hundred days have passed since Donald Trump entered the Oval Office as the forty-fifth president of the US. US domestic politics and Washington’s engagement with the rest of the world since then have entered an unprecedented period of uncertainty and there is no surety that  this era of uncertainty is going to end any time soon.

Donald Trump has done several things that none of his predecessors either attempted or succeeded in doing. He draws only a dollar a month as his presidential salary. At the same time, he doggedly refuses to reveal his income tax returns. He has stopped former senior US officials from serving as lobbyists on behalf of foreign governments, which was a big blow to several countries that periodically used US officials to promote their respective national interests in the corridors of power in Washington. President Trump also signed a few executive orders aimed at protecting the job market for US citizens and making it costlier for US companies to hire foreign workers. The unemployment rate in the US has witnessed a record reduction in the first few months of the Trump administration.

The other side of the domestic scenario is equally striking. Trump is yet to gain the confidence of a large number of Republican legislators, but has managed a legislative victory in the US House of Representatives in his attempt to repeal the Obamacare health insurance policy. While he did not have his way in getting the appropriate budget allocation for the proposed wall across the US-Mexico border, he managed a substantial allocation to enhance US' defence preparedness. He could not stop Congressional oversight over his campaign team members' alleged connection with Russian intelligence, but displayed his mettle in firing the director of the powerful Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI). He has waged a prolonged war with the US media by criticising and snubbing it, and has even prevented their entry into White House events. On social media, however, he continues to have a large fan following.

In the arena of world affairs, Trump, the presidential hopeful, unnerved several foreign leaders and alliance partners. He declared NATO obsolete, asked Japan and South Korea to have their own nuclear arsenals to defend themselves, declared China a currency manipulator, and Pakistan, an unreliable ally. He promised to build a wall to stop immigrants them from entering the US. He vowed to completely defeat the Islamic State (IS).

Many analysts argued that candidate Trump would be different from President Trump, and that he would behave like his predecessors by taking a 180 degree turn and abandoning his campaign rhetoric on US foreign policy. Many expected the Trump administration to build a cooperative relationship with Russia, US' erstwhile Cold War adversary, and seriously combat emerging challenges from China.

However, Trump, as president, appears to exhibit a smart foreign policy strategy mixed with ambiguity and surprise moves. He no longer considered NATO obsolete but insists that NATO partners must pay more towards defence burden-sharing. He has promised to continue to extend US' nuclear umbrella to Japan and South Korea, but has also demanded more money in exchange for the security guarantee. He has stopped calling China a currency manipulator, after having offended it through his telephonic conversation with the Taiwanese president. He continues to praise Russian President Vladimir Putin, but has also dealt him a political blow by raining down missiles on Syria on the basis of the alleged use of chemical weapons by the pro-Russia Syrian regime. He has sought to ban Muslim immigration from seven countries in an unintended projection of his image as anti-Muslim, but has also sent his vice-president to visit the largest mosque in Southeast Asia.

He has not walked away from the Iran nuclear deal, but is going to make Saudi Arabia his maiden foreign visit to balance Washington’s engagement in the Middle East. In other words, the Trump administration is going to be an administration with a difference. India will have to learn to deal with this administration with caution and innovative diplomacy because uncertainty will be the name of the game. Navigating this political environment will require deft diplomatic skill. The bipartisan consensus in the US for a stronger strategic partnership with India notwithstanding, playing ball with Trump is going to be hard.

Print Bookmark Email Facebook Subscribe
IPCS Columnists
Af-Pak Diary
D Suba Chandran
Resetting Kabul-Islamabad Relations: Three Key Issues
Can Pakistan Reset its Relations with Afghanistan?
The New Afghanistan: Four Major Challenges for President Ghani
Big Picture
Prof Varun Sahni
Understanding Democracy and Diversity in J&K
When Xi Met Modi: Juxtaposing China and India
Pakistan?s Tactical Nuclear Weapons: The Inevitability of Instability

Dateline Colombo

Asanga Abeyagoonasekera.
Sri Lanka: Moving Towards a Higher Collective Outcome
The Importance of Electing the Best to our Nation's Parliament
Sri Lanka: Toward a Diaspora Re-Engagement Plan
Dateline Islamabad
Salma Malik
Pakistan's Hurt Locker: What Next?
IPCS Forecast: Pakistan in 2015
India-Pakistan Relations in 2015: Through a Looking Glass
 
Dhaka Discourse
Prof Delwar Hossain
IPCS Forecast: Bangladesh in 2015
18th SAARC Summit: A Perspective from Bangladesh
Bangladesh in Global Forums: Diplomacy vs. Domestic Politics
Eagle Eye
Prof Chintamani Mahapatra
India-US: Significance of the Second Modi-Obama Meet
Has President Obama Turned Lame Duck?
Modi-Obama Summit: Criticism for Criticism?s Sake?

East Asia Compass
Dr Sandip Mishra
India-Japan-US Trilateral: India?s Policy for the Indo-Pacific
China-South Korea Ties: Implications for the US Pivot to Asia
Many ?Pivots to Asia?: What Does It Mean For Regional Stability?
Himalayan Frontier
Pramod Jaiswal
Nepal?s New Constitution: Instrument towards Peace or Catalyst to Conflict?
IPCS Forecast: Nepal in 2015
Constitution-making: Will Nepal Miss its Second Deadline?

Indo-Pacific
Prof Shankari Sundararaman
IPCS Forecast: Southeast Asia in 2015
Indonesia's Pacific Identity: What Jakarta Must Do in West Papua
Modi in Myanmar: From ?Look East? to ?Act East?
Indus-tan
Sushant Sareen
IPCS Forecast: Pakistan in 2015
Islamic State: Prospects in Pakistan
Pakistan: The Futility of Internationalising Kashmir

Looking East
Wasbir Hussain
Myanmar in New Delhi's Naga Riddle
China: ?Peaceful? Display of Military Might
Naga Peace Accord: Need to Reserve Euphoria
Maritime Matters
Vijay Sakhuja
Indian Ocean: Modi on a Maritime Pilgrimage
Indian Ocean: Exploring Maritime Domain Awareness
IPCS Forecast: The Indian Ocean in 2015

Nuke Street
Amb Sheelkant Sharma
US-Russia and Global Nuclear Security: Under a Frosty Spell?
India's Nuclear Capable Cruise Missile: The Nirbhay Test
India-Australia Nuclear Agreement: Bespeaking of a New Age
Red Affairs
Bibhu Prasad
Countering Left Wing Extremism: Failures within Successes
Return of the Native: CPI-Maoist in Kerala
The Rising Civilian Costs of the State-Vs-Extremists Conflict

Regional Economy
Amita Batra
India and the APEC
IPCS Forecast: South Asian Regional Integration
South Asia: Rupee Regionalisation and Intra-regional Trade Enhancement
South Asian Dialectic
PR Chari
Resuming the Indo-Pak Dialogue: Evolving a New Focus
Defence Management in India: An Agenda for Parrikar
Pakistani Taliban and Al Qaeda in Afghanistan: Implications for Asian Security

Spotlight West Asia
Amb Ranjit Gupta
Prime Minister Modi Finally Begins His Interaction with West Asia*
A Potential Indian Role in West Asia?
US-GCC Summit: More Hype than Substance
Strategic Space
Manpreet Sethi
India-Russia Nuclear Vision Statement: See that it Delivers
Global Nuclear Disarmament: The Humanitarian Consequences Route
Nasr: Dangers of Pakistan's Short Range Ballistic Missile

The Strategist
Vice Admiral Vijay Shankar
Jihadi Aggression and Nuclear Deterrence
The Blight of Ambiguity
Falun Gong: The Fear Within


OTHER REGULAR contributors
Gurmeet Kanwal
Harun ur Rashid
N Manoharan
Wasbir Hussain
Rana Banerji
N Manoharan

Ruhee Neog
Teshu Singh
Aparupa Bhattacherjee
Roomana Hukil
Aparupa Bhattacherjee


 

Browse by Publications

Commentaries 
Issue Briefs 
Special Reports 
Research Papers 
Seminar Reports 
Conference Reports 

Browse by Region/Countries

East Asia 
South Asia 
Southeast Asia 
US & South Asia 
China 
Myanmar 
Afghanistan 
Iran 
Pakistan 
India 
J&K  

Browse by Issues

India & the world  
Indo-Pak 
Military 
Terrorism 
Naxalite Violence 
Nuclear 
Suicide Terrorism 
Peace & Conflict Database 
Article by same Author
Testing the Trump-Modi Partnership

India-US: Convergences and Divergences

Forecast 2017: India-US Strategic Partnership

Paradigm Shift or Business As Usual: Trump’s China Policy

American Turbulence: Global Ramifications

Trump's Nuclear Policy: Global Implications

Critical Challenges to the Indo-US Strategic Partnership

India and the US: Inching Towards an Informal Alliance

Need the World Worry over Trump's Foreign Policy?

US: “Losing Respect” Abroad

Implications of Modi’s US Visit

Forecast 2016: Difficult Days Ahead for Washington

India-US: Significance of the Second Modi-Obama Meet

Has President Obama Turned Lame Duck?

Modi-Obama Summit: Criticism for Criticism’s Sake?

Changing Global Balance of Power: Obama’s Response

Obama Administration: Re-engaging India

US in South Asia: Declining Influence

US Foreign Policy: Rehashing Old Stances

US’ Frantic Effort to Make the Rebalancing Strategy Work

US, Ukraine and the End of Unipolarity

US-China Cold Confrontation: New Paradigm of Asian Security

US in Asia: A 'Non-Alignment' Strategy?

Indo-US Strategic Partnership Post Khobragade: The Long Shadow

Pakistan’s Role in War against Terrorism: Costs and Benefits

ADD TO:
Blink
Del.icio.us
Digg
Furl
Google
Simpy
Spurl
Y! MyWeb
Facebook
 
Print Bookmark Email Facebook Subscribe
Year 2017
 January  February  March  April  May  June  July  August  September
 2016  2015  2014  2013  2012  2011  2010  2009
 2008  2007  2006  2005  2004  2003  2002  2001
 2000  1999  1998  1997
 
 

The Institute of Peace and Conflict Studies (IPCS) is the premier South Asian think tank which conducts independent research on and provides an in depth analysis of conventional and non-conventional issues related to national and South Asian security including nuclear issues, disarmament, non-proliferation, weapons of mass destruction, the war on terrorism, counter terrorism , strategies security sector reforms, and armed conflict and peace processes in the region.

For those in South Asia and elsewhere, the IPCS website provides a comprehensive analysis of the happenings within India with a special focus on Jammu and Kashmir and Naxalite Violence. Our research promotes greater understanding of India's foreign policy especially India-China relations, India's relations with SAARC countries and South East Asia.

Through close interaction with leading strategic thinkers, former members of the Indian Administrative Service, the Foreign Service and the three wings of the Armed Forces - the Indian Army, Indian Navy, and Indian Air Force, - the academic community as well as the media, the IPCS has contributed considerably to the strategic discourse in India.

 
Subscribe to Newswire | Site Map
18, Link Road, Jungpura Extension, New Delhi 110014, INDIA.

Tel: 91-11-4100-1902    Email: officemail@ipcs.org

© Copyright 2017, Institute of Peace and Conflict Studies.