Wednesday, July 11, 2018

Without allies

"Like today’s other populist leaders, Mr. Trump knows that his standing with voters hinges on making good on his most radical promises. For a populist leader to succeed, he or she doesn’t need to solve problems, nor outdo his or her predecessor. All the populist leader has to do is be different from the mainstream — to do what mainstream politicians would never do. For example, insult Germany....

Peering through Mr. Trump’s twisted prism, one finds not friends and enemies, but fans and enemies. Fans are those who are loyal to you no matter what; they never expect reciprocity. Enemies are also valuable because they help you solve problems; you can assert your power by breaking them or befriending them. The Trump administration’s approach to the North Korean enemy is a perfect example of this. Its relationship with Russia — Mr. Trump is meeting with Vladimir Putin next week — could be the next example."
-Ivan Krastev, "Sorry NATO, Trump doesn't believe in allies"

No comments: