As he returns from his first trip to Europe as president, Donald Trump faces the consequences of his actions abroad. On May 28, German Chancellor Angela Merkel told a crowd in Germany that Europe cannot completely rely on outside allies. Could Trump’s visit have something to do with it?
It may very well be that because of Trump, Germany can no longer rely on the United States as an ally.
At a rally in Munich, Merkel said that “The times when we could completely rely on others, they are over to a certain extent. I have experienced this in the last few days.”
These comments could have a drastic impact on U.S.-German relations. The “last few days” clearly refer to the days in which she attended NATO and Group of 7 meetings, where Trump and other international leaders were present. Apparently, Trump’s actions at the meetings have made the U.S. look like an unreliable partner.
At the NATO summit, Trump failed to endorse Article 5, NATO’S guarantee of mutual defense. Although Trump recognized “the commitments that bind us together as one,” he did not verbally articulate a continued commitment to Article 5 specifically. To foreign allies, this may signal that the U.S. is not fully committed to the agreement that if there is an attack on any one NATO member, the allies will come to its defense.
When Trump attended the G7 meeting in Italy, he declined to recommit to the Paris Agreement on climate change. The Paris accord establishes a global action plan to deal with climate change.
All of this indicates that the under Trump’s presidency, the U.S. is not wholly trustworthy. Perhaps it is because as the leader of the country, Trump is unstable and at times erratic. Merkel, in contrast, carefully chooses what to say. Her words are clearly intentional. Merkel looks forward to less European dependence on the United States. That may, in part, be attributed to the current U.S. administration.
The election of Donald Trump is increasingly demonstrating its consequences on worldwide politics. Other countries may need to reconsider the stability of the United States and if it is worth the risk to rely on it. Less international cooperation is regressive.
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