Germany’s foreign minister, Heiko Maas, recently stated that his country can no longer rely on the U.S. after President Trump called the European Union a “foe” of his administration.
Heiko Maas told the German newspaper Funke:
“We can no longer completely rely on the White House. To maintain our partnership with the USA we must readjust it. The first clear consequence can only be that we need to align ourselves even more closely in Europe. Europe must not let itself be divided however sharp the verbal attacks and absurd the tweets may be.”
Maas’ statement came soon after President Trump called the European Union a “foe” of the U.S. based on “what they do to us [the U.S.] on trade,” during an interview with Fox News on Sunday. Trump called Russia and China “foes” as well. During a summit with NATO members in Brussels, Trump also mentioned that Germany was being “controlled by Russia,” a statement which became somewhat ironic after Trump’s visit to Russia.
Maas’ comments echoed German Chancellor Angela Merkel’s recent statements. Following the disastrous G7 roll-out a couple of months ago, Merkel stated that Europe must become more independent and can no longer rely on the U.S. if it is no longer willing to cooperate. Merkel mentioned that she was disappointed with the way that Trump treated Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau. While Merkel did remark that this was not the end of transatlantic relations, she stated that the EU is considering moving forward with projects which will not include the U.S.
Following these statements, Merkel quickly made trade deals with China and France, attempting to improve both the German market and the markets of countries which have been affected by Trump’s abusive tariffs.
It is still unclear how Merkel and German ministries will proceed after Trump’s summit with Russia, which only served to further complicate international relations.
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