Summary of Report About Military Issues 2017 - Paper Example

Published: 2021-08-10
1266 words
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Middlebury College
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Research paper
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From a military perspective, the United States has several problems: Syrian way, Russian expansionism, and North Koreas nuclear weapons program. However, Trump administration has few plans to address these issues. In his presidential campaign, Trump did not offer specific solutions that could be leveraged to tackle the military issues facing the country. Instead, the Republican Government has focused on enacting massive tax cuts, increasing the military budget, limiting American support for NATO, and reducing American involvement in the Middle East. These strategies are counterintuitive to resolving the military-related problems facing the country. Most of these policies lack specific plans and are considered unfeasible by experts.

Description of events

Since taking up the presidency, Trump has made several changes which have exacerbated some of the military issues identified. Despite Defense Secretary, Jim Mattis, asking Trump to hold up the Iran nuclear agreement, the president disavowed it (Thomas Giboons-Neff, 2017). Instead of considering the stakes involved in this decision, Trump dismissed the agreement and considered it to be defective. This rolled back the progress that had been made by previous governments to tackle the growing Iran nuclear problem. Trumps response to the growing threat of North Koreas nuclear program has been problematic. The president opposed Tillersons plan to use three channels open to North Korea to defuse the situation (Rubin, 2017). This was considered to be the best plan for preventing flare-up between North Korea and the U.S. The president opposed the plan terming them as being useless. He considered a preemptive military solution to the best strategy for eliminating the nuclear threat. However, this could have severe ramifications for South East Asian countries that support the U.S.

President Trump reversed the previous governments decision to reduce the number of troops in the Middle East. His decision to send more troop contingents to Afghanistan added war costs incurred by the country in the fight against Islamists (Mufson, 2017). This decision is a reversal of the policy implemented by Obama aimed at making Afghanistan armed forces less reliant on foreign military support. President Trump has also failed at curtailing Russian expansionism. Given Russias role in Ukraine and the Middle East, many leaders in the West have raised security concerns. Several sanctions had been imposed on Russia, and the Congress wanted to increase more sanctions to pressure it to stop interfering with other countries. This created a conflict between the congress and President Trump with the former seeking to increase sanctions while the latter wanted to reduce the sanctions (Matt Zapotosky, 2017). Lack of resolution between both parties resulted in a stalemate which severed efforts to pressure Russia to stop its illegal activities.


Some of the new military-related events described should be considered in revising the report commentary. The commentary missed to include some of the events which occurred in the last quarter of 2017. Thus, the report lacks good insight into the military issues that the U.S has to handle and their implications for the country and other stakeholders. To resolve this, several statements on the events should be included in the report.

First, the statement focusing on North Koreas nuclear threat should be expanded to include Trumps decision to disavow Iran nuclear deal. It is important to note that before the deal was implemented, the U.S. considered the Iran nuclear program to be a threat to its national security. This case applies to North Koreas nuclear program. Given that the presidents decision to reject the deal could elevate this threat, a statement on this decision should be included to highlight the extent of the threat that the country has to grapple with.

While the commentary mentions North Koreas nuclear program as one main issue undermining the U.S. foreign policy, it does not consider how Trumps recent decisions have changed the situation. In reaction to Trumps outbursts, North Korea has accelerated its nuclear weapons program and has developed several medium-range missiles that can deliver nuclear warheads. Despite the sanctions implemented, North Korea weapons program remains strong, and the country is poised to pose a greater threat to the U.S as it expands its nuclear capabilities. Trumps decisions on this program confirm the commentarys position about his erratic and uninformed decisions which expose the U.S. to more threats. However, it would be imperative to include a statement describing implications of his decision on the country as it would enhance the accuracy of the commentary.

Trumps decisions to increase military troop is a significant event that should be included in the commentary. The commentary reports highlight the governments decisions to scale back military operations in the Middle East. However, recent development indicates a reversal of this strategy as the president has deployed about an additional 3000 troops in Afghanistan. This is a critical decision that affects the military budget. Additional troops in the Middle East lead to an increase of war costs which would, in turn, result in the expansion of the military budget. Notably, Trump has promised to maintain the troops in Afghanistan for an unspecified time which implies that the costs may increase over time. Including this statement in the commentary could be imperative in enhancing the accuracy of the report and providing more information to the U.S. readers about the extent of their countrys military involvement in foreign countries.

The conflict involving Trump and the Congress over implementations of new sanctions against Russia confirms the statements made in the commentary, particularly in Safe Living section. With regards to this, the United States has invested numerous resources in safeguarding its citizens from a variety of security risks. The commentary mentions examples of Russias interference with the countrys elections which put the citizens at grace risks. However, it does not focus on the conflict between the two primary stakeholders which has prevented implementation of new sanctions aimed at curtailing Russias activities. It is essential for the report to include the statement on this conflict including the attitudes of both the Congress and president Trump on the sanctions which can be vital in giving readers a clear overview of the challenges faced by the government.


Given the new developments that undermine national security, the score on safe living should be reviewed. Nuclear threats and stalemate over Russia sanctions have elevated security risks. In the past few months, North Korea has deployed missiles which could hit US military bases in foreign countries as well as countries allied with the U.S. As such, the U.S is at a higher risk of being hit by nuclear missiles today than it was in the previous year. Also, the conflict between President Trump and the congress reflects Russias deep involvement within the country poses elevated security risks. Therefore, the score on safe living should be reduced to indicate the high-security risks faced by the country.


Matt Zapotosky, K. D. (2017, October 27). Trump administration reveals new list of potential Russia sanctions. Retrieved from Washington Post:

Mufson, S. (2017, August 24). Trump Afghanistan troop increase adds to $1 trillion in war costs; the government will be paying for war veterans healthy care for another 50 years. Retrieved from Washingotn Post:

Rubin, J. (2017, August 30). The administrations incoherence on North Korea intensifies. Retrieved from The Washington Post:

Thomas Giboons-Neff, D. E. (2017, October 3). Mattis Contradicts Trump on Iran Deal Ahead of Crucial Deadline. Retrieved from The New York Times:

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