President Trump vetoed a bipartisan resolution on Tuesday that would have forced an end to American military involvement in Saudi Arabia’s civil war in Yemen, rejecting an appeal by lawmakers to his own deeply rooted instincts to withdraw the United States from bloody foreign conflicts.
President Trump on Tuesday condemned Saudi Arabia’s account of the killing of the journalist Jamal Khashoggi as “the worst cover-up ever,” and his administration warned for the first time that it would impose human rights sanctions on those who took part in the plot.
Just a few hours after President Trump doused expectations of extracting any confession from President Vladimir V. Putin on Russia’s election meddling when they meet on Monday, his own Justice Department issued a sweeping indictment of 12 Russian intelligence agents for hacking the Democratic National Committee and the Clinton presidential campaign. The bold move, precisely the kind that Mr. Trump has long resisted, demonstrated how he is almost wholly untethered from his administration when it comes to dealing with Moscow.
Lt. Gen. H. R. McMaster, the battle-tested Army officer tapped as President Trump’s national security adviser last year to stabilize a turbulent foreign policy operation, will resign and be replaced by John R. Bolton, a hard-line former United States ambassador to the United Nations, White House officials said Thursday.
President Trump said he would impose tariffs on about $60 billion worth of Chinese imports on Thursday as the White House moved to punish China for what it says is a pattern of co-opting American technology and trade secrets and robbing companies of jobs and billions of dollars in revenue.
President Trump on Tuesday congratulated President Vladimir V. Putin of Russia on his recent re-election victory, but failed to ask him about either the fairness of the Russian vote, which Mr. Putin won with a lopsided margin, or about allegations of Russian meddling in the 2016 presidential election.
Even before Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s legal setback this week, a rare fissure had opened up between him and President Trump. The White House rebutted reports that he and the Americans had discussed annexing parts of the West Bank, and Mr. Trump voiced fresh concerns about Israel’s openness to a peace accord.
President Trump issued a threat on Wednesday to cut off American aid to any country that votes for a resolution at the United Nations condemning his recent decision to recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel.
President Trump plans to recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel and move the American Embassy there, upending nearly seven decades of American foreign policy and potentially destroying his efforts to broker peace between Israel and the Palestinians.
President Trump, frustrated by China’s unwillingness to lean on North Korea, has told the Chinese leader that the United States is prepared to act on its own in pressuring the nuclear-armed government in Pyongyang, according to senior administration officials. Mr. Trump’s warning, delivered in a cordial but blunt phone call on Sunday night to President Xi Jinping, came after a flurry of actions by the United States — selling weapons to Taiwan, threatening trade sanctions and branding China for human trafficking — that rankled the Chinese and left little doubt that the honeymoon between the two leaders was over.
President Trump scrambled American diplomacy on two fronts on Friday, delivering a stinging rebuke of Qatar at the very moment his secretary of state was trying to mend fences in the Persian Gulf, while at the same time reaffirming support for NATO two weeks after he had declined to do so.
President Trump thrust himself into a bitter Persian Gulf dispute on Tuesday, claiming credit for Saudi Arabia’s move to isolate its smaller neighbor, Qatar, which is a major American military partner. “During my recent trip to the Middle East I stated that there can no longer be funding of Radical Ideology,” Mr. Trump said in a morning tweet. “Leaders pointed to Qatar — look!”
During their “very friendly conversation,” the administration said in a late-night statement, Mr. Trump invited Mr. Duterte, an authoritarian leader accused of ordering extrajudicial killings of drug suspects in the Philippines, to visit him at the White House. Now, administration officials are bracing for an avalanche of criticism from human rights groups. Two officials said they expected the State Department and the National Security Council, both of which were caught off guard by the invitation, to raise objections internally.
President Trump vowed Thursday to overturn a law restricting political speech by tax-exempt churches, a potentially huge victory for the religious right and a gesture to his political base. In addressing the issue of churches and political speech, Mr. Trump said, “I will get rid of and totally destroy the Johnson Amendment and allow our representatives of faith to speak freely and without fear of retribution.”
President Trump fired his acting attorney general on Monday after she defiantly refused to defend his immigration executive order, accusing the Democratic holdover of trying to obstruct his agenda for political reasons. The acting attorney general, Sally Q. Yates, on Monday ordered government lawyers not to defend President Trump’s executive order on immigration in court. The president appointed Dana J. Boente, United States attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia, to serve as acting attorney general until Senator Jeff Sessions of Alabama is confirmed.
The Obama administration has written 275 briefing papers for the incoming Trump administration: nearly 1,000 pages of classified material on North Korea’s nuclear program, the military campaign against the Islamic State, tensions in the South China Sea, and every other kind of threat the new team could face in its first weeks in office.