Updated the response and expanded on the possible theory behind the Oz phone call. I will put that spoiler here for you:
- [+] Click to see more
- Now, let's see this through the lenses of the diplomatic world:
1. You have the Australian PM calling a local, station saying everything was smooth. Reporter could understandably feel perplexed due to anonymous stories reporting the opposite. But here was the primary source, so who would you believe?
2. You have reports from the Senators' office going of Ben Cardin said he would go to Mexico soon to "repair" damages, of John McCain issuing public statement expressing affirmation on the US-Oz relationship, and of Cardin and Bob Corker going to Germany and Jordan officials. These are 3 official, primary sources too. And of 2 them sit on the Sen. Com. of Foreign Affairs. --- same group doing State Dept. oversight. McCain is Armed Service, which is DoD oversight. So it would be amazing to see 3 different offices declaring clean up work for the White House. (source)
3. So this is my theory and I have nothing as proof right now. I will return to this if I read/hear anything more: Oz Turnbull did Trump a favor by going on the record and smooth things out. How the call ended is a small footnote. Trump could be slamming down the phone, or he did not. But the NYT got a different angle than the Post and teased out some details as about the call:
The Trump administration official said the call was shorter than planned
, and ended abruptly
after Mr. Turnbull told the president it was necessary for the refugees to be accepted. The details of the call were confirmed by a senior administration official with direct knowledge of the exchange
who spoke on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to publicly discuss the diplomatic talks. (Emphasis mine; source
I still stand by the idiotic misstep characterization of Trump's action. Phone calls are supposed to be the easiest rapport building mechanic a leader can have with other, outside of playing golf. You have State Dept. people prepping all of the right material for you. All you have to do is pick up the phone and be cordial. If anything is disagreeable, you said, I'll have my people look into this, or that, Mr. _______, and I will get back to you at another time. There's a play book for this. Why he couldn't follow the dance steps is my amazement.
In other news: DoD chief now affirms US-Japan relation
. This is common, don't misunderstand me. But given the news that the 3 offices above had to do clean up work, it is easy to believe Mattis is here to clean up as well. You might remember Trump saying during the campaign that the US spent a lot of money for Okinawa command and got nothing in return.
Side note on Japan's Military Defense vs GDP if you care to read:
- [+] Click to see more
- In the linked source, I want you to know one thing that tend to show up in JP's defense conversation and it goes something like this, "Japan now spends less than 1 percent of its gross domestic product on defense, and some U.S. hawks have argued Tokyo should pay more for its own protection."
I don't know how many times I've seen this but it's almost like saying, I am an American and my primary language is American English. That 1-percent spending is tied deeply to the core identity of the Japanese government and people. it goes to the pacifist manifesto post-WWII. And for a long time now, South Korea has been reminding Japan of this no matter how many times China tried to trip Tokyo.
There are psychological reasons to fear the 1-percent becoming 2 or 3. The Japanese hawks delight at the notion of going 2 or 3, and crafted plans for such miracle. But I stopped reading about those annually updated plans because I thought it sounded so far fetch...until now.
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Btw: Here's the full text
from a lawsuit vs Virginia on the EO, taking on the Fifth and Equal Protection Clause angle. Can't wait to hear from you on the specific language. One wrinkle here is the conclusion portion included Justice Harlan, who had a special spot in Romer vs Evans
written by Justice Kennedy. (This also affirms that arguing from the First point of view might be harder than expected).
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I just saw a link to Reuters: EO is completely blocked
. States of Washington and Minnesota filed the motion
. States argued that they have Standing due to the ban affecting their economies. The judge didn't rule on its constitutionality. Government will appeal, ofc.