Why Donald Trump’s boycott of the G7 can bring the world back to the 19th century

Why Donald Trump’s boycott of the G7 can bring the world back to the 19th century

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Trump got angry after some statements by the Prime Minister of Canada, Justin Trudeau.

A tweet launched by Donald Trump from Air Force One, the airplane of the presidents of the United States, shook the foundations of world diplomacy.

After the summit of the G7, the forum that brings together the leaders of the seven most industrialized countries on the planet, the US president was angered by the comments made by the Prime Minister of Canada, Justin Trudeau, at a press conference after his departure .

And for that, Trump decided to withdraw his support for the communique that had been arduously negotiated among the delegations participating in the meeting.

It is an exceptional behavior in international relations and there are experts in this field who believe that it shows a trend that could lead the world to relive much darker times.

Christopher Meyer, a veteran diplomat who was the United Kingdom’s ambassador to the United States between 1997 and 2003, told the BBC Newshour that he had not seen anything like it in his career years.

“I had experienced someone making different interpretations of an ambiguous text, but this has been unprecedented since 1945,” he said, referring to Trump’s unforeseen announcement.

Although the US president justified his last-minute rectification with the differences due to the imposition of tariffs that his government maintains with the Canadian, Ambassador Meyer believes that there are other reasons behind the Trump boycott.

“The explosion of Trump in Air Force One is not totally unexpected,” Meyer said.

Donald Trump.
Copyright of the REUTERS image
Image caption There are experts who believe that Trump can lead the world to relive much darker times.

Already at the beginning of the summit, Trump provoked tensions with the other attendees by demanding the reinstatement of Russia in a club from which he was expelled in 2014 for the annexation of the Ukrainian Crimean peninsula.

“We know that he hates multilateral meetings and prefers bilateral negotiations,” said the former British Ambassador.

Meyer recalls that, although the current world order was established at the end of World War II, especially thanks to the American initiative, the current tenant of the White House shows no attachment for him.

That is why, he believes, he rejects multilateral forums such as the G7, in which, in addition to the US. Canada, Germany, France, the United Kingdom, Italy and Japan participate.

“The great world disturber”

“What we see in Trump is the great world disturber,” Meyer said.

It is “someone who is bringing to pieces the architecture of the international order” based on organizations such as the UN or NATO.

First UN meeting in San Francisco in 1945.
Copyright of the GETTY IMAGES image
Image caption The former US Ambassador He maintains that Trump prefers bilateral meetings to forums with many countries such as the UN.

Meyer believes that if Washington persists in its current policy “it could be that all that structure ends up demolished to be replaced by God knows what.”

Meyer says that it is still far from happening, but suspects that Trump would like “something different to replace the G7.”

But with what order does the president dream if he does not like the current one?

To answer the question, the British diplomat noticed the National Security Strategy published by the Trump government at the end of last year.

“There, Russia and China are identified as the great adversaries.”

Putin and Trump.
Copyright of the GETTY IMAGES image
Image caption Trump called for Russia to be readmitted into the G7, from which it was excluded by the annexation of Crimea.

For Meyer, the idea of the world of Trump and his team is based on the old vision of “great powers that rival one another, that negotiate with each other and, sometimes, fight in wars with each other”.

“It seems to me that this is the kind of thinking with which Trump and his new National Security Advisor, John Bolton, would sympathize,” he said.

Meyer believes that organizing the world concert under these premises is the same thing that Beijing and Moscow have been pursuing.

“Nothing would like the Russians and the Chinese more than a great concert between the great powers, China, Russia and the United States in a new G3.”

A milk delivery boy on a street in London bombed in World War II.
Copyright of the GETTY IMAGES image
Image caption Diplomat Meyer believes that the ideas that inspire Trump can lead the world to relive the horrors of the past.

Since coming to power, Trump has been moving away from the traditional partners of the United States, with decisions such as the withdrawal of the Paris Climate Agreement or the imposition of tariffs on imported goods in the US market.

Meyer sees in steps like these the desire to achieve “a return to the order of the policy of powers that occurred in the nineteenth century.”

It also detects in Trump’s policy the recovery of “concepts such as the balance of power or spheres of influence, which fell into disuse after the Second World War,” when the multilateral cooperation mechanisms were established and were typical of the international system nineteenth century.

“We already saw the misery they brought to the human race,” Meyer concludes.

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