The “erratic” behavior of Donald Trump worries Canberra
Since his election, the President of the United States has multiplied the contradictory, even disparaging, declarations to the Australian ally.
The arrival of the unpredictable Donald Trump at the White House has further complicated the difficult Canberra equation, torn between Beijing and Washington. “For the first time since the Second World War, the leader of the world order is not really interested in the world order, “ says Michael Fullilove, director of the Lowy Institute. While Trump America is inclined to protectionism and rejects multilateralism, some Australians fear to be abandoned by their historic ally. Others call for a more independent foreign policy from Washington. There are even voices in favor of a strategic rapprochement with China.
The Australians still have not digested the first official conversation of their prime minister with the new US president. In February, Donald Trump abruptly cut short a phone call from Malcolm Turnbull, according to US press. Furious, he would have said that it was the “far worse” conversation he had to date with a foreign leader.
At the center of this lively exchange, an agreement concluded by the Obama administration on the reception by Washington of a thousand refugees in Australia. Trump accused Canberra of wanting to export its terrorists and on Twitter called the deal “stupid. ” Then, in May, he apparently wanted to calm the relationship with the Australians, declaring that “the Americans have no better friends” than they.
Calls to distance themselves from Washington multiple
But the evil is done. “Americans I see in think tanks or in embassies are nervous. They’re worried about losing Australia, “ says Bob Carr. “Australians are more attracted to American values than Chinese, but with Trump, the Americans themselves have turned their backs on these values. “ The former head of Australian diplomacy quotes …