Trump rattles world leaders as Cabinet tries to soften tone – Chicago Tribune

Donald Trump‘s spats with U.S. allies as close as Mexico and as unlikely as Australia are leaving his new secretary of state and others in his Cabinet to clean up a lot of potential damage. It’s a good-cop, bad-cop dynamic that could define America’s foreign policy for the next four years.

President Trump’s first two weeks on the job have rattled foreign friends and foes alike — and even members of his own party — starting with his order to temporarily halt all refugee admissions as well as immigration from seven mainly-Muslim countries. Concern only escalated the past few days with his personal dust-ups with foreign leaders and declaration that Iran is now “on notice” for possible American action.

“It’s time we’re going to be a little tough, folks,” Trump said at a National Prayer Breakfast on Thursday, as unseemly details circulated about his private phone calls with the Mexican and Australian leaders. “We’re taken advantage of by every nation in the world virtually. It’s not going to happen anymore.”

Trump’s blunt comments came a day after word emerged of a tense discussion with Australian Prime Minister Malcom Turnbull, in which the new U.S. president lambasted an Obama-era deal to resettle some 1,600 asylum-seekers.

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