U.S. conflicts regarding topics such as Turkey, Russia, China, Iran, Iraq, Syria, Afghanistan, North Korea, NATO, NAFTA, international trade and Climate Change, are largely related to the differences of ideological opinion within the Donald Trump administration. Meanwhile, the conflicts under these topics also open to debate the “Republican Party’s” mainstream traditional line. This is what the Neo-Nationalists-Globalists clash within the Trump administration is about.
According to Trumpists, who classify themselves as “Neo-Nationalists,” Trump was going to take the party and the U.S. from the “globalist” line and make America great again. After Trump was elected president, the important positions in Cabinet and the White House were distributed between the “Neo-Nationalists” and “Globalists.” It was obvious that this distribution was going to lead to an internal conflict.
Trump appointed Gary Cohn, former CEO of “Goldman Sachs,” whose area of operation is investment banking, to the head of the “National Economic Council.” “Globalist Cohn” is, at the same time, Trump’s chief economic adviser. Protectionist economist Professor Peter Navarro, known for his strong anti-China view, was appointed as director to the “National Trade Council (NTC).” Likewise, Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross has similar approaches. Currently, there is a fight between these factions about whether high tariffs should be applied on steel and aluminum products imported from other countries, primarily China.
According to Neo-Nationalists, the “steel issue” is a “National Security” issue that undermines the U.S.’s domestic production and concerns the sensitive sectors of the military industry. Yet, according to Globalists, the restrictions on imported steel will both harm the U.S.’s relations with its allies and deviate the Republican Party from its free trader position. The U.S., by backing “Communist China’s” “World Trade Organization” (WTO) membership, had planned to transform the country within the global economic system. Neo-Nationalists advocate that China grew unlawfully by abusing the rules of the WTO, that it harms U.S. economy, as well as its global leadership. According to Neo-Nationalists, China’s rise means the fall of the U.S. China being seen as the primary threat in the “National Security Strategy Document” is a reflection of the U.S.’s fear of losing global leadership.
Trump wants to apply high customs duty on Chinese products as soon as possible. The conflict between factions is delaying such a decision from being taken. The high tariffs are going to start “trade wars” between China and the U.S.
Secretary of Defense James Mattis, “National Economic Council” Director Gary Cohn, Secretary of Department Rex Tillerson, “Council of Economic Advisers” Chair Kevin Hasset and Trump’s International Economic Affairs Adviser Everett Eissenstat are on one side, while Ross and Navarro are on the other. Gen. Mattis and “Pentagon” argue that the high tariffs will harm U.S. allies. Upon the conflict echoing in the media the White House released a statement saying, “The president’s team at the White House is directing a process that will provide all the information necessary for the president to make the best decision in accordance with the interests of the American nation.”
We had drawn attention on numerous accounts to the ideological war between the “free traders” and “protectionists” ever since Donald Trump came to office as president. In recent weeks, Washington’s agenda is occupied by topics such as “personal armament,” “the Robert Mueller investigation” and the move of the U.S. Embassy to Jerusalem being pulled to an earlier date, as well as U.S. troops fighting in Syria without a congressional resolution. Now, the customs tariffs debate that will start trade wars with China must also be added to this agenda.