Trump has succeeded like no other western President by making enemies of all of his real friends and of all of his country’s long-term competitors that he actually thought could be his friends! What a schoolboy…
The US has always had close and deep friendships since the Second World War with Europe and Japan. Canada and Mexico have been important neighbours and trading partners. He has treated them all badly and insulted many of their leaders. He appears to have misunderstood the importance of trust, and that it takes years of constant cultivation. He may receive a royal welcome but people talk under their breath and make fun of his dullness.
His expressions friendship and admiration for Mr. Putin and Mr. Xi were well received by these gentlemen. They expect to be treated with respect, which is their natural expectation. They treat their own domestic opponents with harsh measures… In the West, Trumps praise for these men was met with some incredulity then. But now this has all turned sour and Xi and Putin are venting their fury against Trump together this week in Moscow now that Trump has ordered punitive trade tariffs on them.
Naturally, the world cannot be managed in this way… Trade and diplomacy need to be based on trust and that demands that countries and companies can plan for the future. Behaving like a spoilt child is not acceptable.
The President of Finland is one of the few people Trump has not yet ridiculed. That is probably because we are a small country that does not threaten him. On the other hand, Mr. Niinistö is a serious person who seldom smiles and who is modest in his bearing. As an experienced politician with excellent international networks in both the West and East there is a good chance that he can keep some order in trade and diplomacy.
Macron and Merkel are on their way out and the EU is facing a leadership crisis. It is now up to the small Nordic countries in that must jump in and help rebalance the world order.
Photo: Wikipedia Commons