Analysis & Opinions - Foreign Policy

No, @realDonaldTrump Is Not a Realist

| April 1, 2016

When it comes to geopolitics, the Donald's worldview is fantasy and folly — not realism.

The Trump for President campaign may have begun as a self-promoting, ego-gratifying lark, but his success on the campaign trail seems to have convinced him he really is the best person for the job. It hasn't hurt that his Republican rivals have been a decidedly unimpressive lot or that he has profited from the same disenchantment with an entrenched political class that has helped Bernie Sanders beat expectations among Democrats. It's going to be an interesting summer.

To reach the White House, however, Donald Trump has to demonstrate to the voters that he can do more than plaster his name on buildings, insult women and minorities, make fun of Jeb Bush, and waste a lot of the money he inherited from his more accomplished father. If Trump is going to win the nomination and then the general election, he needs to convince a lot of Americans that he won't pilot the ship of state onto a reef. Which is no doubt why he agreed to a lengthy interview on foreign policy with New York Times reporters Maggie Haberman and David Sanger last week....

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For more information on this publication: Belfer Communications Office
For Academic Citation: Walt, Stephen M.“No, @realDonaldTrump Is Not a Realist.” Foreign Policy, April 1, 2016.

The Author

Stephen Walt