21 January 2017   Leave a comment

The New York Times ran a great article with reactions to President Trump’s inaugural address from leaders all over the world.  The reactions run the gamut from effusive support to dark predictions about the future.  It does seem to be the case, however, that the more authoritarian leaders, like President Duterte of the Philippines, show greater enthusiasm for President Trump. The reactions of European leaders express great concern for the future of US-European relations.

Handelsblatt is a German economic newspaper dedicated to European business.  Its editorial on President Trump’s inaugural speech is the harshest critique I have yet read.  It termed the address as “a veritable declaration of war”.  The editorial was written by the publisher of the newspaper and it ends with these words:

“America is now on the brink of a new period of polarization. The demons in this fraternal battle have been unchained. The greatness that Trump seeks will not be borne under these conditions. An icy wind is blowing across the land.”

President Trump should make the repair of US-European relations a top priority.  But Reuters also reports that the reaction in Asia was also quite negative.

Russia, Turkey, and Iran are convening a peace conference on Syria in Kazakhstan this week.  The US was invited to attend, but declined.  It may be the case that the Trump Administration will accept the invitation, but the presence of Iran makes that unlikely.  One should not expect much from the conference–it merely signals a belief on the part of the three conveners that Syrian President Assad is now firmly in power and a desire to begin reducing the costs of the conflict.  Whatever the discussions may entail, it is probably not the case that the suffering of the Syrian people–500,000 have died in the six year conflict–will be a top agenda item.

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Posted January 21, 2017 by vferraro1971 in World Politics

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