Jeffrey notably signed the 2016 “Never Trump” letter created by Republican national security officials that believed the then-presidential candidate was a danger to the United States. Although the former U.S. ambassador to Iraq stands by his decision to sign the document, he has had a change of heart over the years regarding Trump’s foreign policy.
“I know what I did in 2016, I do not disagree with that. I was following closely the situation with Iran, Iraq and Syria, and I was appalled that we didn’t have a more coherent policy. This wasn’t a political decision.”
According to Jeffrey, George W. Bush and Barack Obama’s approaches to the Middle East “weakened” America and “made things worse.”
“Jeffrey now says that Trump’s ‘modest’ and transactional approach to the Middle East has yielded a more stable region than either of his predecessors’ more transformational policies,” Defense One reported.
The retiring diplomat claimed that Trump’s administration has effectively focused on Russia, Iran, and China, while at the same time retaining control of Islamic terrorism. This approach, he said, has achieved a military and political “stalemate” in various conflicts in the Middle East.
“[Stalemate] and blocking advances and containing is not a bad thing,” Jeffrey said.
He noted that powers like the U.S., France, and Britain failed to employ the strategy in the 1930s, which pushed them into dangerous conflicts in North Africa, Paris, and the South China Sea.
Jeffrey also stressed that Biden’s team should resist the desire to engage in “transformation” and instead focus on maintaining the stability brought through the purported stalemate in the region.
“I think the stalemate we’ve put together is a step forward and I would advocate it.”
He also warned that the Biden administration might not be able to achieve some of the things it has its sights set on, like re-entering the Iran nuclear deal.
Trump has faced criticism for some of his foreign strategies, including his decision to withdraw troops from Syria. In particular, some believe that America effectively abandoned its Kurdish allies in the region and left them open to slaughter at the hands of the Turkish.
Others have noted the differences between Trump’s approach and those of his predecessors. As The Inquisitr reported, Chicago Tribune columnist Clarence Page claimed that — despite his close relationship with Russian President Vladimir Putin — Trump has been tougher on Russia than the Obama administration.