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The leading bullyboy in this part of the world is North Korean Leader Kim Jong Un. His regime is a calculated act of defiance.Historians will have to decide whether Barack Obama's presidency encouraged this fraying of limits. For all his decency, Obama conveyed a sense that you could defy America and its cherished "rules-based order" and get away with it. Even if Obama had been as implacable as President Andrew "Old Hickory" Jackson, the probing and testing of America that always accompanies our transitions of power would already have begun. How does the United States credibly reinforce the rules of behavior among nations when a leading U.S. presidential candidate proclaims his support for torture, religious discrimination, tax dodging and abusive sexual behavior? Comparing Trump to Vladimir Putin may be flattering Trump.Having named and shamed Russia, what's the U.S. going to do about it? The Obama administration wisely answered that some of America's response will be visible, and some of it won't. The U.S. has vastly more power than we normally employ.
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