Less than a year after he was elected, U.S. President Donald Trump has had to reverse many of his campaign promises, and he still lacks a solid team around him. On many occasions, his declarations have contradicted with those of his close collaborators. In fact, sometimes he contradicts himself, as he tweets exactly the opposite of what he said earlier. So it is not surprising that there is a huge sense of unpredictability, in the U.S. and abroad, about Trump's real intentions.
Let's take the Russia example. One would swear that Trump is eager to build closer ties with Kremlin, but he has probably noticed that the establishment in Washington will not allow that to happen because a Trump friendship with Russian President Vladimir Putin would open too much space to Russia around the globe. And because Trump is unable to adopt a clear-cut position on Russia, he is unable to develop a coherent relationship with the EU, China or the Middle East.
His relations with Turkey are another problem. On the one hand, he has strongly said that Ankara's concerns about PKK terrorism are justified and that the U.S. will support Turkey in its fight against terrorism. On the other, the U.S. is sending weapons to the Democratic Union Party's (PYD) People's Protection Units (YPG) militia, which is, as everybody already knows, a PKK affiliate.
So how can anyone trust what he says about, for example, North Korea? Today, he is threatening them, but maybe tomorrow he will decide to meet North Korean Supreme Leader Kim Jong Un in person. Who would be surprised?
As if his unpredictability was not enough, Trump is now developing a new habit of threatening everybody he does not like with the use of force. The U.S. Navy has fired warning shots at Iranians in the Gulf, he has mentioned a possible intervention in the Syrian city of Idlib, signed weapons sale agreements with both Saudi Arabia and Qatar. In a moment, these two countries were on the brink of war with one another, and he told the press that North Korea will soon be met with "fire and fury."
He has not stopped there, however. As you may know, Venezuela has been going through a very turbulent period for some time, and the tension keeps escalating. The Venezuelan government has even announced there is a risk of a military coup, one that is allegedly supported by anti-regime refugees in the United States, of course, with the active help of the U.S. government.
Venezuela has long adopted an anti-American policy, and as with Cuba, Trump has decided to take a harsh and punitive position about anti-American governments in Latin America. Therefore, it would not be surprising if the U.S. were actively working to get rid of Venezuela's current government. In this context, Trump has announced that all options are on the table, including military ones, to tackle the Venezuela crisis.
Will Trump threaten every country like this from now on? If that is the only solution he has, then the U.S. will have to beef up its military capacities, and increase the number of soldiers and foreign bases, because there is unrest in many countries around the world.
What about the unrest in the United States?
Last weekend's events in Charlottesville, Virginia, show that the risk of armed conflict between white supremacists and their opponents is not small. The governor of Virginia declared a state of emergency, but we do not know yet if this will be enough to calm people down. We do not know either if racists will continue their provocative rallies elsewhere in the U.S..
It is not like Trump would threaten every troubled state in the U.S. with military intervention. Or would he?
An unpredictable U.S. president is worrying for the entire planet, indeed.