Donald Trump’s first overseas trip as president is officially in the books. The trip, which began with a supplicating visit to the Saudi royals, concluded over the weekend with Trump shaking the foundations of the heretofore ironclad relationship between the United States and its closest allies. He did so by refusing to affirm critical mutual defense provisions of NATO, and by declining to endorse the Paris climate accords that had been spearheaded by Barack Obama, and agreed to by all G7 members.
This refusal sent a clear message the leaders of the G7 nations, as evidenced by the remarks of German Chancellor Angela Merkel. As reported by Yahoo News, Merkel had this to say: “The times in which we could….depend on others are on the way out. I’ve experienced that in the last few days. We Europeans truly have to take our fate into our own hands.”
Merkel summarized the visit with Trump as a “six against one” discussion that was “very difficult, not to say very unsatisfactory”.
The G7 (Group of Seven) is a group of seven “advanced” countries, including the United States, Canada, Germany, France, Japan, Italy and the United Kingdom. Trump’s message of isolationism, and his refusal to reaffirm NATO bedrock principles, present a significant threat to American leadership in the world. Steve Bannon must be very pleased.