u.s. foreign policy. u.s. grand strategy.

Donald Trump’s Shrinking Pool of Foreign Policy Advisors

The GOP establishment backlash against Donald Trump continues. Last night, Senator Susan Collins of Maine became arguably the highest ranking Republican officeholder to publicly proclaim that she would not support Trump. Over the weekend, outgoing GOP Congressman Scott Rigell (VA-2) declared for Gary Johnson and William Weld, former GOP governors now running on the Libertarian Party ticket. Another lame-duck Republican, Richard Hanna (NY-22) had previously affirmed his support for Hillary Clinton. Meanwhile, GOP Congressman Adam Kinzinger (IL-16) has also come out against Trump, although he hasn’t signaled who he will be supporting.

Yesterday, 50 former Republican national security officials piled on, trashing Trump’s views. In a scathing letter, the officials warned that Donald Trump “would be the most reckless president in American history” and collectively proclaimed that they would not be voting for him in November.

Trump wasted no time attacking the entire group. He said that the signatories should be blamed “for making the world such a dangerous place” and dismissed them as “nothing more than the failed Washington elite looking to hold onto their power.” Indeed, given that Trump has been running against Washington from the very first day of his campaign, he likely welcomes the scorn from these quarters.

This is hardly the first letter opposing Trump on account of his foreign policy views. Bryan McGrath assembled an early #NeverTrump letter here, and, more recently, Ali Wyne drafted a letter signed by mostly academics, 250 and counting, here. It appears that the vast majority of this country’s foreign policy experts want no part of the billionaire real estate developer/reality TV star.

Would Haass and Levi Accept Their Own Proposed Deal?

One of the more exasperating phenomena surrounding the question of “diplomacy” with Iran is that many of the people proposing diplomatic offers have outlandish suggestions for the contours of a negotiated settlement on the nuclear issue. The latest offering comes in today’s Wall Street Journal, courtesy of Richard Haass and Michael Levi of the Council on Foreign Relations.

Before the criticism, though, a bit of praise: Haass and Levi concede at the outset that

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