The Soufan Group Morning Brief


In a stunning repudiation of the Washington establishment, Donald Trump was elected the 45th president of the United States on Tuesday, defying polls that showed his Democratic challenger Hillary Clinton with a small but persistent edge right up until voting ended. “The forgotten men and women of our country will be forgotten no longer,” Trump told supporters around 3 a.m. on Wednesday at a rally in New York City, just after Clinton called to concede. Transcript of Trumps’ Victory Speech
Trump’s win was powered by an outpouring of voters, overwhelmingly white and many without college degrees, who felt left behind by the economic recovery, ignored by Washington, and disdained by the country’s political, cultural, and economic elites. His supporters said again and again that Clinton was too polarizing to capture a divided nation, and that the media had become too disconnected to detect the signals. In the end, Trump’s campaign claimed a number of battleground states that had been expected to fall into Clinton’s column, with come-from-behind victories in Pennsylvania, North Carolina, Florida, and Wisconsin. New York Times, Washington Post, Wall Street Journal, Los Angeles Times
Trump’s victory immediately set off financial jitters around the world and unease among international allies. Political analysts and pundits say it is nearly impossible to know what Trump might do in the early days of his administration, in part because many of his proposals on the campaign trail lacked real specificity. His core issues of immigration, trade, and law and order offer some clues to his priorities, but there has been no real road map as to what he will try to accomplish once in the Oval Office. Washington Post, Politico  
Republicans maintained control of the Senate with a number of upset victories, as well as control of the House of Representatives. New York Times, Washington Post
Meet Trump’s Cabinet in waiting. Newt Gingrich is widely expected to be tapped as Secretary of State, though Sen. Bob Corker and former U.N. Ambassador John Bolton are also said to be in the running. Sen. Jeff Sessions has been discussed as a possible Defense Secretary, and people close to Trump say former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani is the leading candidate for attorney general.  
Around the world:
Bloomberg: Trump Victory Threatens a New World Disorder as Putin Looks On
Accepting his remarkable upset over Hillary Clinton on Wednesday morning, Trump reached out to world leaders, many of whom have been worried by his campaign. “We will be willing to get along with all other nations willing to get along with us,” Trump said early Wednesday. “I want to tell the world community that while we will always put American interests first, we will deal fairly with everyone.”
Russian President Vladimir Putin sent a telegram that, the Kremlin said, “expressed hope for joint work to steer Russia-U.S. relations out of crisis.” News of the Republican’s victory was greeted with broad smiles and a round of applause in the lower house of the Russian parliament.
New York Times: Trump’s Victory Promises to Upend the Global Order
“For the first time since before World War II, Americans chose a president who promised to reverse the internationalism practiced by predecessors of both parties and to build walls both physical and metaphorical….Many around the world scrambled to figure out what [Trump’s shocking victory] might mean in parochial terms. For Mexico, it seemed to presage a new era of confrontation with its northern neighbor. For Europe and Asia, it could rewrite the rules of modern alliances, trade deals, and foreign aid. For the Middle East, it foreshadowed a possible alignment with Russia and fresh conflict with Iran.”
Politico: Allies Scramble After ‘Huge Shock’ of Trump Victory
Washington Post: World Gasps in Collective Disbelief
New York Times: World Awakes to Shock and Uncertainty
The Markets:
Global markets plunged on Tuesday and Wednesday, with futures for the Dow Jones industrial average sliding more than 700 points at one point. Futures trading was temporarily halted for the S&P 500-stock index amid a 5 percent loss. The Nikkei fell more than 5 percent in early Wednesday trading. The Mexican peso nosedived to an 8-year low, and U.S. Treasuries surged.
Washington Post: Markets Plunge Worldwide
Wall Street Journal: Stock Futures Plunge as Trump Posts Surprising Win
The Media:
Washington Post: The Media Didn’t Want to Believe Trump Could Win. So They Looked the Other Way.
“To put it bluntly, the media missed the story,” writes Margaret Sullivan in the Washington Post. “In the end, a huge number of American voters wanted something different. And although these voters shouted and screamed it, most journalists just weren’t listening. They didn’t get it.”
Vox: Media Obsession with Email Scandal Helped Trump to the White House
Ohio man arrested for alleged support of ISIS: Aaron Travis Daniels, 20, of Columbus, Ohio, was arrested Monday on charges he attempted to provide material support to ISIS. A federal complaint against him alleges that he sent $250 in January to an ISIS operative and had communicated his commitment to join ISIS to an undercover FBI agent. Reuters
Muslims questioned in Election Day terrorism investigation: The FBI questioned Muslims in at least eight states over the weekend seeking information about a possible threat from al Qaeda to carry out pre-election terrorist attacks. Washington Post

Iraqi forensic experts are investigating a mass grave discovered this week by Iraqi troops advancing towards the ISIS-held city of Mosul. At least 100 corpses, many of them decapitated and others bearing signs of torture, were reportedly found on the grounds of an agricultural college in the town of Hammam al-Alil. BBC News, Washington Post
The fight against ISIS in Mosul has turned into close-quarters urban combat, as Iraqi security forces move street by street to gain and hold territory in the city. CBS News
The U.N. refugee agency said Tuesday that ISIS had abducted nearly 300 people from Tal Afar, a city west of Mosul. Officials said those kidnapped may have been targeted because many were former Iraqi security forces personnel. CNN
Los Angeles Times: As Circle Tightens on Mosul, a Big Question: Where Is Islamic State’s Leader?
Turkey said Tuesday that Kurdish-led forces leading an assault on the ISIS stronghold of Raqqa in Syria should not enter the city itself but merely help encircle it. That suggestion irked the U.S.-backed Kurds, and the dispute is threatening to complicate efforts to drive ISIS out of the Syrian city. New York Times
Washington Post: ISIS Sends Car Bombs Against U.S.-Backed Forces Advancing on Raqqa

German authorities said Tuesday that five alleged ISIS recruiters had been arrested, suspected of smuggling people out of Germany to join the terror group fighting in Syria. Ahmad Abdulaziz Abdullah, a 32-year-old Iraqi national, was named as the alleged ringleader of the multi-regional recruitment network. CNN

India: India has ended the use of Rs500 and Rs1,000 currency notes in a bid to curb counterfeiting and the flow of money on the black market. Officials said the change would strike a blow against terrorist financing. Quartz
Can Trump be a good national security president? “Donald Trump has shocked the pundit class, the media, Washington, D.C., the United States, and the world,” said Peter Feaver and Will Inboden in Foreign Policy. “We offer two thoughts on foreign policy and national security. First, President Trump must immediately start campaigning to win the trust and respect of a constituency he completely ignored until now: foreign leaders and foreign publics. They do not have a vote in our election, but our election results matter to their lives. Second, Trump must beef up his foreign policy and national security team.”
An American Tragedy: “The election of Donald Trump to the Presidency is nothing less than a tragedy for the American republic, a tragedy for the Constitution, and a triumph for the forces, at home and abroad, of nativism, authoritarianism, misogyny, and racism,” writes David Remnick in The New Yorker. “Trump’s shocking victory, his ascension to the Presidency, is a sickening event in the history of the United States and liberal democracy.”
Homeless in America: “With Donald Trump now elected president, I have more fear than I’ve ever had in my 63 years that we could do just that — break our country, that we could become so irreparably divided that our national government will not function,” writes Thomas Friedman in The New York Times. “I am in anguish, frightened for my country and for our unity. And for the first time, I feel homeless in America.”
Trump’s victory proves the U.S. is unexceptional: “No need for tears and hand-wringing, U.S. friends,” writes Leonid Bershidsky in “What happened on Tuesday was not a collapse of your democracy -- just a powerful blow to American exceptionalism and the misplaced arrogance of the U.S. elite.”
Americans are finding new ways to join the surveillance state: A new report “documents the growth of immense law-enforcement data banks—accumulated by the FBI and local, state, and federal police agencies—housing digital images of more than 117 million American citizens,” writes Patricia Williams in The Nation. “This lack of regulation—and public ignorance of such systems’ existence—means that police departments are able to use facial recognition to identify and track law-abiding citizens as well as criminal suspects.”

For cutting-edge analysis of the geopolitical events shaping global affairs, read today’s TSG IntelBrief.

Center on National Security
Fordham University School of Law
150 W. 62nd St. 7th Floor
New York, NY 10023 US
Copyright © 2016 Center on National Security, All rights reserved.