Donald Trump is Weakening the West, Says German Official

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German Minister of Foreign Affairs Sigmar Gabriel

The German Minister of Foreign Affairs, following the statements by Chancellor Angela Merkel, has launched a salvo against Donald Trump, accusing him of weakening the West, confirming the malaise between the first European power vis-à-vis the American president.

“Anyone who accelerates climate change by reducing environmental protection, who sells more weapons in a conflict zone and who does not want to politically solve religious conflicts, well this person endangers peace in Europe” said German Foreign Minister Sigmar Gabriel, according to a statement.

“The short-sighted policy of the US government is contrary to the interests of the European Union,” he added, a few days after the end of Mr. Trump’s first tour abroad, which led him to Saudi Arabia, Israel, Belgium, and in Italy for the G7 summit.

Speaking in front of the press, Gabriel also estimated that the new US climate policy under Trump and the $ 110 billion of arms contracts to Saudi Arabia, a country heavily criticized for its record in the field of human rights, have made “the West smaller, or at least weaker”.

The day before, it was Chancellor Angela Merkel, a convinced Atlanticist, who had made the first statements of discord by saying that Europe could no longer rely entirely on the United States of Donald Trump and the United Kingdom post-Brexit.

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“The days when we can count on each other is almost over, it is my experience of the past few days, we Europeans must take our destiny in hand,” she said.

“Our friendship with the United States, with the United Kingdom, with Russia, and with other countries, of course counts. But we must know, we must fight for our own future, for our Destiny, “insisted the most powerful leader in Europe who is also aiming for a fourth term.

So far neither the United States nor the other European capitals has reacted directly to the words of Mrs Merkel and her chief diplomat. European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker, “remains a proponent of building bridges,” said his spokesman Margaritis Schinas on Monday.

The EU envoy to the negotiations on Brexit, Michel Barnier, said on Twitter to be “in agreement with Ms Merkel” on the need for the Europeans to take control of their situation, without mentioning the Chancellor’s remarks on London and Washington.

This exceptional critical statements by the Chancellor followed the G7 summit, which notably resulted in an American commitment to respect the Paris agreement on climate. Angela Merkel had already denounced Saturday a situation “not at all satisfactory”.

The subject seems in any case to be unanimous in Germany between the conservatives of Mrs Merkel and the social democrats, political family of Mr Gabriel.

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The Chancellor’s competitor in the September elections, former President of the European Parliament Martin Schulz, defended her rival Monday and accused Mr Trump of claiming “isolationism and the right of the strongest” to impose his views.

From the day the businessman was elected, the Chancellor told Donald Trump that he had to adhere to the values ​​of the Western democracies after a campaign of slippage and controversy.

However, the US president, before and after his election, did not deprive himself of attacking Germany. Faithful to his anti-free-trade speech, he adopted a very tough tone with regard to German trade surpluses, threatening to impose customs duties in retaliation.

Last week in Brussels, at a meeting with the President of the European Commission, Jean-Claude Juncker, and that of the Council, Donald Tusk, the American president described the Germans as “very bad”, according to the newspaper Der Spiegel.

Shakes Gilles

Editor of The Talking Democrat. He enjoys bike riding, kayaking and playing soccer. On a slow weekend, you'll find him with a book by the lake.