Did We Need 500 Days to Understand Trump’s Foreign Policy?
Dr. de Hoop Scheffer appeared on the French radio program Du Grain à moudre, a 40-minute current affairs show broadcast by radio station France Culture. The program centered on President Donald Trump’s foreign policy priorities and strategies, and hosted Le Monde’s former correspondent in New York, Sylvain Cypel and Laurence Nardon, who heads the U.S. research program at Paris’s IFRI (The French Institute for International Relations).
The discussion touched on the recent string of dramatic dismissals from the White House and Foggy Bottom and what it meant in terms of U.S. foreign policy adjustments and transatlantic relations. Dr. de Hoop Scheffer emphasized that the recent nominations of Pompeo and Bolton indicate an acceleration of the “America First” agenda, on trade, migration issues but also foreign policy matters, with a radical approach to burden-sharing with European and Gulf allies and a reluctance to intervene militarily. As the U.S. mid-term elections are fast-approaching, she said that France and European allies need to accept that their strategic and economic interests will be a collateral damage of Trump’s obsession to satisfy his electoral base, and that they needed to define firm responses and policies to pursue multilateral cooperation on key issues (climate, trade, Iran) and strengthen their own defense capabilities.