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Trump's White House Promises Muscular National Security Strategy47:19
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President Trump announces that the U.S. government will formally recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel in the Diplomatic Reception Room at the White House Dec. 6, 2017 in Washington, D.C. (Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)
President Trump announces that the U.S. government will formally recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel in the Diplomatic Reception Room at the White House Dec. 6, 2017 in Washington, D.C. (Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)
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With guest host Tom Gjelten.

The White House unveils its new national security policy. Citing "America First" and "peace through strength," the Trump administration promises a more muscular American posture on the global stage.

By law the Trump administration has to lay out its priorities in a national security strategy, but the Trump administration took a different tack from other presidents, our experts tell us: less focus on human rights, aggressively taking on China, and more.

"It’s an attempt to essentially take what’s a standard national security document, required by law, and fuse it with some of the America First ideas," Demetri Sevastopulo of the Financial Times says in this episode.

Ilan Berman of the American Foreign Policy Council tells us in this episode: "The strategy is about America First but it's not about America alone. It’s not an isolationist strategy."

But Richard Haass, president of the Council on Foreign Relations, takes a more critical tack, saying there's a wide gap between this strategy and President Trump's typical rhetoric and policies.

"I think we’ve come a long way from a shining city on a hill, where our example was a powerful source of American influence," Haass says. "Increasingly the example we’re setting is alienating rather than inspiring."

Guests:

Demetri Sevastopulo, Washington bureau chief for the Financial Times. (@Dimi)

Richard Haass, president of the Council on Foreign Relations, author of "A World in Disarray."(@RichardHaass)

Ilan Berman, senior vice president of the American Foreign Policy Council. (@ilanberman)

From The Reading List:

CNN: 5 Things To Know About Trump's National Security Strategy — "President Donald Trump unveiled his administration's national security strategy on Monday, outlining the foundation and priorities that will drive US foreign policy during his time in office.

He touted the plan in a campaign-style speech that spared no words in criticizing the policies of his predecessors, even if it didn't get into detail about some of his administration's concerns about Russia."

Financial Times: Trump To Label China As A Strategic 'Competitor' — "President Donald Trump will describe China as a strategic “competitor” on Monday when he releases a national security strategy that accuses Beijing of maintaining a “repressive vision” and pursuing economic aggression aimed at weakening the US. "

President Trump campaigned on a promise to Make America Great Again by putting America First. Yesterday he unveiled a national security strategy he says will do just that. He wants to tear up trade agreements, challenge rivals and adversaries, “massively” expand the military, and do away with what he calls “horrible” immigration policies. This hour, On Point: President Trump’s National Security Strategy: What it really means. --Tom Gjelten

This program aired on December 19, 2017.

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