Trump Needs More Than 100 Days on Syria

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When Yitzhak Rabin met with President Gerald Ford on his first visit to Washington as Israel’s Prime Minister in 1974, he sought to cash in on Ford’s earlier promise to him that he would move the U.S. Embassy in Israel to Jerusalem if he ever became president. Ford remembered the vow he made as a member of Congress. Nevertheless, he said, “life looks different from the Oval Office.”

This is a lesson that President Donald Trump is slowly grasping. The businessman who campaigned as an isolationist “America First” candidate is inching toward a realist foreign policy on issues ranging from North Korean nukes to engaging China. Nowhere is this change more apparent than with his Administration’s Syria policy. Trump has grudgingly come around to the realization that vague campaign promises lacking serious deliberation are not enough to grapple with the Gordian knot the country represents.

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