‘I don’t want to be in the room with the guy’: European allies 'turning their backs' on Trump

‘I don’t want to be in the room with the guy’: European allies 'turning their backs' on Trump
President Donald J. Trump stands with French President Emmanuel Macron and Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau as they arrived for a G7 Working Dinner in La Malbaie, Quebec. Official White House photo via Shealah Craighead / Wikimedia Commons.

President Donald Trump has offended America’s long-time European allies to such a great degree they avoid looking to him for leadership or partnership, and “are turning their backs on him,” The New York Times reports.


German Chancellor Angela Merkel “was so uncomfortable” with the thought of being with President Trump at the G-7 this summer, she told French President Emmanuel Macron, “I don’t want to be in the room with the guy,” according to William Drozdiak, a Brookings Institution senior fellow. Drozdiak has just published a book based on a series of interviews with the French President.

Merkel “knows that any event, Trump will spin as if the others are implicitly endorsing him, and that’s the last thing she wants to do,” Drozdiak told The Times.

German analyst Ulrich Speck says Chancellor Merkel has “been hurt by” Trump “often,” and “they don’t get along and they disagree on many policies.”

France’s attitude “toward Trump is a mix of sadness and anger,” said Thomas Gomart, director of the French Institute of International Relations.

“Our main ally refused to exercise leadership during the corona crisis,” he said of the American President, “and is every day more provocative toward its allies and is creating divisions that are very actively exploited by China.”

After nearly four years, Mr. Trump has no diplomatic accomplishments, Mr. Gomart said, listing failures on North Korea, the Middle East, a deterioration of relations with China and no improvement of relations with Russia. Instead, Mr. Macron believes that Mr. Trump has damaged European security through his unilateral abandonment of the Iran nuclear deal as well as nearly every arms control agreement with Russia.

Trump is “out of touch” with European allies, said Julianne Smith, a former Obama official now with the German Marshall Fund in Washington.

He “continues to believe allies can be abused and mistreated and that he can order them around and at the same time count on them.”

Ms. Merkel’s refusal to come to Washington “says a lot about how fed up multiple leaders are around the world, who have seen how little return they’ve gotten on the investments they made into a relationship with Trump,” she said.

With the virus and the riots, she added, “now there is a sense of America’s weaknesses being exposed, and a feeling that the emperor has no clothes.”

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