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Merkel wrong about Trump, Brexit

10 1 0

LONDON – The chancellor of Germany no longer trusts the United States or the United Kingdom. In a May 28 campaign speech in Bavaria, Angela Merkel signaled distance from the two “Anglo Saxon” states, telling her audience “we Europeans must really take our destiny into our own hands.”

German commentators were quick to point out that the radicalism of the address has been over-emphasized: “Europe has a vital interest in keeping the U.S. engaged,” wrote Europe expert Ulrich Speck in the Financial Times. “(Merkel) has no ambition to replace the current trans-Atlantic arrangement with something else.”

Merkel did in fact qualify her remarks, saying she couldn’t “fully” rely on the U.S. and the U.K., and the times in which she could were “somewhat” over. The chancellor faces a general election in September, and though her conservative Christian Democrats not only won an upset victory in a significant May state election but is also several points ahead of the center-left Social Democrats in the national polls, she cannot take victory for granted.

She won’t ditch NATO, nor is she about to, but she can’t look as if she likes U.S. President Donald Trump, a man who has tweeted out his criticism of Germany for paying “FAR LESS than they should on NATO & military.”

Merkel, if........

© The Japan Times