Donald Trump participated in the commemoration of the D-Day landing.
“Exceptional.” That’s the word Donald Trump used in Caen to describe his relationship with Emmanuel Macron, and the relationship between the U.S. and France. It was on Thursday, at the 75th anniversary of D-Day. The memory of this incredible military action and of the sacrifice of American soldiers to free Europe from the Nazis eases the tensions that today separate allies of yesterday. But the instability of this president forces us to judge his actions over his words.
The U.S. is obviously still an important ally of France. The economic exchanges between us, and close cooperation regarding safety and defense guarantee a strong relationship, inherited from the second half of the 20th century. But the world changes quickly, and so does America. With his inappropriate manners and his preference for bilateral power relations, Trump destabilizes two foundations of France in the world: Europe and multilateralism. Since he perceives the European Union as both an economic rival and a weird political concept, he threatens it with commercial war, tries to divide France and Germany, and supports the most aggressive Brexit figures in the U.K. Regarding diplomacy, he disavowed the Paris climate agreement and the Iran nuclear deal, and showed his lack of interest in the United Nations or the World Trade Organization.
Under his leadership, the U.S. does not want to play the part of world organizer anymore. It has renounced the idea of common utopia and focuses instead on its own short-term interests. With friends like that, who needs enemies.