The world is quaking with problems; America has a few of its own. Jay talks about some of them with Elliott Abrams, late of the Reagan State Department and the Bush (43) White House, now with the Council on Foreign Relations.

The Afghan War: Should we be continuing it? What does victory look like? North Korea: Is Steve Bannon right? Do they “got us”? Russia: Was Congress right to sanction them as they did? Is this a usurpation of executive authority? What about Ukraine: Arm them?

Venezuela: How could this end up? A bigwig in the regime has apparently ordered the assassination of Senator Marco Rubio. Are we doing anything about it? What SHOULD we do?

Someone has deafened our diplomats in Cuba. Who? The Castro regime? If so, is that an act of war?

The Egyptian government is a flat-out dictatorship. Civil society has been crushed. The U.S. has withheld some military aid from Cairo, and may well withhold more. What are the ins and outs of this? In Hong Kong, the government has imprisoned three students who led democracy protests. Hong Kong is ever more indistinguishable from the rest of the PRC, right?

In the Reagan administration, Abrams notes, U.S. officials took opportunities to talk about the persecution of individuals in countries such as China, the Soviet Union, and Iran. That doesn’t happen anymore – which is a shame.

Anyway, a tour with Elliott Abrams, enlightening.

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