Despite his best efforts, the world is not getting in line behind Donald Trump and his raving nationalism. He brought that nationalism to the United Nations General Assembly on Tuesday, addressing those gathered with an eye towards his “America First” agenda the whole time. The very same day, though, French President Emmanuel Macron stood before the same body and delivered a tongue-in-cheek but stinging rebuke.
He explained that going forward, his country will not be forming trade alliances with nations that aren’t part of the Paris climate accord. That’s the agreement signed by hundreds and hundreds of countries, which committed to working to curtail their impact on climate change in coming years — and which Trump has moved to withdraw the United States from.
Macron’s remark could prove increasingly relevant as time goes on. At present, the United States remains engaged in lengthy trade negotiations with Canada, after already having reached a tentative agreement on future trade with Mexico. North American trade hangs in the balance — but so does U.S. trade with the European Union, of which France is a part. The Trump administration included the bloc in the countries covered by his broad, harsh tariffs, which he has refused to back down from as time goes on.
That’s not where the tumult ends, either. The Trump administration is also carrying on against China, with rounds of tariffs on tens of billions of dollars worth of goods flying back and forth.
Trump’s promise to protect American industry is falling flat over and over again as he dangles it over the cliff of losing global cooperation.
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