America's status as global pariah under the Trump regime worsens as the United States continues to bail on UN agreements.
The United States has walked away from a United Nations effort to ease the global migration and refugee crisis, with the Trump administration saying it was no longer compatible with U.S. principles or priorities.
In a statement, the U.S. Mission said the U.N.'s New York Declaration for Refugees and Migrants — recognized by the United States last year under the Obama administration — "contains numerous provisions that are inconsistent with U.S. immigration and refugee policies."
Nikki Haley, the U.S. ambassador to the U.N., said President Donald Trump made the decision after noting that "America is proud of our immigrant heritage and our long-standing moral leadership in providing support to migrant and refugee populations across the globe."
"But," Haley continued, "our decisions on immigration policies must always be made by Americans and Americans alone. We will decide how best to control our borders and who will be allowed to enter the country."
The rest of the world, including China and Russia, will go on without us as Trump continues to abdicate from any sort of global leadership.
World leaders and dignitaries from 193 U.N. member states adopted the New York Declaration for Refugees and Migrants in September 2016, paving the way for the global compact for migration.
The compact, expected to be adopted in 2018, is aimed at facilitating safe and orderly migration around the world. It will present a framework for comprehensive international cooperation on migrants, set out a range of actionable commitments and tackle issues such as protecting the safety, dignity, human rights and fundamental freedoms of migrants.
Secretary of State Rex Tillerson applauded Trump's decision to exit the agreement and said "strengthening global governance" would run afoul of U.S. laws and policies.
"While we will continue to engage on a number of fronts at the United Nations, in this case, we simply cannot in good faith support a process that could undermine the sovereign right of the United States to enforce our immigration laws and secure our borders," Tillerson said in a statement.
No longer. A nation of immigrants has turned its back on the people of the rest of the planet. Only about 4% of the world's population is American. The other 96% of the globe is realizing that they can get along without us for the time being, and will gladly do so.
And speaking of refugees, we seem to be headed for creating a few million more on the Korean Peninsula as Trump national security adviser is openly warning of war with Pyongyang and GOP Sen. Lindsey Graham is calling for the US to begin removing the families of American soldiers stationed in South Korea.
Let’s be clear about what McMaster and Graham are saying. The US and North Korea appear to be on the path to war, and there’s no solution for peace in sight. Therefore, Graham argues, the US should stop sending family members of American military personnel to South Korea — and start taking those already there out of the country.
Graham’s commentary doesn’t come out of nowhere, however. There are serious reasons to worry about the damage North Korea could do to South Korea, where 28,500 US troops and their dependents reside.
If the US attacks North Korea, experts believe Pyongyang will retaliate not just against America but also against Seoul and Tokyo. Simulations of that possibility produce pretty bleak results. One war game convened by the Atlantic back in 2005 predicted that a North Korean attack would kill 100,000 people in Seoul — a city of around 25.6 million people — in the first few days alone. Others put the estimate even higher. A war game mentioned by the National Interest predicted Seoul could “be hit by over half-a-million shells in under an hour.”
It’s worth noting that McMaster has long talked about the growing prospect of war with North Korea, and Graham nonchalantly discusses “thousands” dying on the Korean Peninsula during a conflict. And of course Trump himself once said he would unleash “fire and fury” on North Korea if it continued to develop its nuclear program.
This rhetoric is supposed to remind North Korea that the US is serious when it says it needs to stop building a missile that can hit America. But now that North has one, it seems like the US is threatening war with no real chance of getting North Korea to do what America wants, experts tell me.
“If McMaster, Graham, and Trump are serious, God help us,” Kingston Reif, the director for disarmament and threat reduction policy at the Arms Control Association, told me in an interview today. “If they're bluffing, it's not working to bring North Korea to the table, and threatening preventive war just further solidifies North Korea's determination to continue advancing its arsenal and increases unintended war risks.”
Either way, we're getting closer to becoming a dangerous rogue state, one the rest of the world will have to deal with.