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“The rift between Europe and the Trump administration became open, angry and concrete”

"The rift between Europe and the Trump administration became open, angry and concrete"

by digby



Vox explains:
The New York Times reported that at the Munich conference, “the rift between Europe and the Trump administration became open, angry and concrete,” in part because of Trump’s “distaste for multilateralism and international cooperation.”

As was the case in Poland, Pence reportedly “met stony silence” during his speech in Munich when he called for US allies to follow Trump’s lead and withdraw from the Iran nuclear deal.

During her speech, Merkel criticized the Trump administration on a number of fronts, including the president’s recent decision to pull out of a treaty with Russia banning land-based intermediate-range missiles, and his announcement that American troops will be leaving Syria and Afghanistan.

“After the fall of the Berlin Wall, we certainly had the hope ... that we could come to a better cooperation,” Merkel said. “Today, in 2019, that seems like a long time ago ... [but] in a few years, it could look very different again.”

Different, for sure. Better? The jury will be out for some time on that.

The NY Times article explains that the allies are done licking Trump's boots in hopes of appeasing him because it hasn't worked. He only respects the leaders he perceives as strongmen --- like Putin, Xi and Kim Jong Un. So, if they flatter him, he's truly flattered and believes it's sincere. If democratic allies flatter him he sees it as a weakness and doubles down on his imbecilic browbeating over bullshit like tariffs and NATO.

Whether these longstanding alliances can be put back together is unknown. Maybe we'll all end up better off, who knows? But those who think the US doesn't need any allies and can just wall itself off from the world in 2019 are fooling themselves. We cannot. And confronting the biggest crisis of our time, climate change, is going to require more cooperation between countries than anything in human history. It's kind of a shame that the richest industrialized nations will have to start from scratch.

In fact, it's idiotic.