Friend or foe? America’s changed relationship with Europe

Last week, Europe was treated to a visit from Donald Trump. The visit yielded one clear conclusion: the United States government has no interest in maintaining its former self-appointed role as global policeman. Europe must now prepare itself for a new era of autonomy from the imperialist agenda of the United States — and assume new responsibilities in championing a better world order.
Several signs could be discerned from Mr Trump’s recent visit. In Helsinki, he demonstrated to the world just how close he stands to the Russian president. Before attending that embarrassing meeting, he referred to the European Union as a foe — in the same breath as China and, conversely, Russia. The week before prior to the NATO summit, he tried to justify for the Russian seizure of the Crimea. Most significant to my mind, however, is the arrest of alleged Russian agent Maria Butina, and the revelation that she appeared at the annual so-called ‘National Prayer Breakfast’ in Washington D.C.
TYT Investigates wrote an enlightening article on the connections between Ms Butina and the Fellowship Foundation — the fundamentalist Christian organisation that organises the breakfast — including a private meeting and the alleged promise of 10 seats at the 2017 breakfast for Russian envoys. The foundation’s activities are significant for Europe because of their sponsorship of “37 trips abroad by individual members of Congress in the last 18 years,” several of which were to Eastern Europe. Their purpose here? To foment opposition to the standards on gay-rights legislation required to be a member of the European Union.
Fostering anti-gay sentiment on Europe’s eastern frontier has been a tactic of the Russian government since before the Ukraine conflict began in 2014. Indeed, anti-gay propaganda is one of many tactics used by Russia in a broader discernible strategy of divide et impera in Eastern Europe to prevent the Union from cementing its presence in states along the Russian border. The Kremlin has also sponsored far-right parties in Italy, Austria and France, in an effort to undermine the integrity of the Union. United, Europe is a challenge to Putin’s Russia. Divided, Europe is its playground.
The recent Butina scandal reveals the presence of a similar agenda festering deep in American politics. The shift in US-Europe relations is not a sudden one. Trump’s America is a culmination of increasing division between Europe and the US: a difference in beliefs, values, social standards and international objectives. The Iraq war was just the beginning. Trump has simply drawn back the veil. Today, America’s Republicans stand behind Trump’s agenda towards the EU because they share his antipathy towards the Union.
This raises major questions about Europe’s role in the world. If Europe is built on the promise of peace, can Europe deliver on that promise beyond its borders? Must we be tied permanently to an imperialist project pursued vigorously by successive American governments over the past 20 years, rather than determining our own vision of defending the values of a free and just world?
Countries across the world are sliding into despotism, xenophobia, isolation and a general ugliness not seen in many decades. Some say Europe should simply watch this slide, abdicating the responsibility to advocate for peace, justice, and equality.
But we cannot afford this complacency. Europe must use its voice to protect human rights and stand against authoritarianism. Only a progressive international can fend off the new wave of nationalist movements and fight the failing establishment that gave life to them. Only a progressive international, bound closely together, can defend freedom and deliver on the promise of a better tomorrow.

Do you want to be informed of DiEM25's actions? Sign up here

Emotion is at the heart of politics — the Left must remember that

Emotion should not be deified, nor eluded as the quintessence of politics. It is a necessary condition, though not a sufficient one.

Read more

Star Trek versus Imperialist Doctrine – Project Syndicate

America has produced a liberal imperialist doctrine, but also a liberal anti-imperialist doctrine which remains ensconced in Star Trek.

Read more

Lessons from this summer’s calamitous Greek forests inferno – The Guardian

This summer’s firestorm was utterly foreseeable – as was the inability of our state to respond effectively.

Read more

The results are in: here’s who was elected to lead our movement

The results are in! DiEM25 members from across Europe and beyond have voted, and our renewed Coordinating Collective (CC) has emerged.

Read more