The relations between France and the United States “has always been, is and will be conflict and beautiful,” said Jacques Chirac in 1995. The fact that two allies, historically the competition in terms of values promoted by them, but the divergence of views on some topic never interfered with France and the United States to cooperate. This celebration of July 14 in Paris are under the sign of the century the United States entered the First world war, which cemented the Alliance with France. All of this should demonstrate Paris’s readiness to continue cooperation with Washington, despite deep disagreement with the worldview of President Donald trump.
Today, the relationship France and the United States developed in the context of an internal split of the transatlantic link: Brakcet, trump, politics, Poland, Turkey and Hungary — all of this undermines the rhetoric of the defence of common democratic values (trump consciously abandoned it), but also nourishes the protectionist and nationalist reflexes. “Our world has never been so divided,” said the President of France held on 7 and 8 July in Hamburg the G20 summit. Trump also said on 6 July in Warsaw that “the fundamental question of our era in the West the desire to live.”
This question would lead one to think about the trump, since he now contributes to undermining international cooperation and new alliances without US participation. Withdraw from the agreement on the climate has strengthened the European-Chinese axis, and protectionism in trade policy encouraged the Europeans to negotiate on free trade and partnership with other countries, such as Japan.
Clarification of the differences
France need to continue to clarify their differences with Washington on matters of common interest issues (before you go further on other topics) and to put pressure on the American administration.
The French initiative to convene in December for the climate summit (two years after the Paris conference) also allows you to keep pressure. While that success was only partially achieved: tramp guardedly spoke about the possibility of us funding group G5 “Sahel” was talking about France. July 14, the French leader will also affect the situation in the Persian Gulf in an effort to reduce the tension that exacerbates the chaotic diplomacy trump. As for North Korea, the United States can count on France’s support for the draft UN resolution on new sanctions. Finally, the Emmanuel Macron will have to exert all the power that France was not out of the game on the Ukrainian and Syrian issues, right now, Washington is trying to forge bilateral cooperation with Moscow.
The effectiveness of Franco-American relations will also depend on inter-parliamentary dialogue despite the fact that the Senate push for new sanctions against Russia and Iran. Finally, Washington will start to listen more to the voice of France if she carried out economic reforms and will stand together with our European partners.
Syria — first test
Trump’s visit to Paris comes amid the rapprochement between the United States and France on strategic issues, including the fight against terrorism. Syria will be the first test of the “General approach”, which they say trump and macron.
Anyway, the fight against terrorism and bilateral cooperation is not enough to build strong and lasting relationships. Need to find new agreements to expand cooperation and avoid rupture of relations. On all issues, from terrorism to migration, climate and non-proliferation of nuclear weapons, the administration, trump will have to work with other countries if it wants to realize the goal. The French President is absolutely right that “we cannot speak about effectively combating terrorism without decisive action against climate warming”.
As a result of the interconnectedness of all these issues it turns out that the U.S. commitment to climate as an important indicator of American leadership, and all other international initiatives (defensive agreement, financing of international organizations, development aid, etc.). Thus, the output of the Paris agreement threatens the prospects of cooperation in all other areas.
Concessions at the G20 summit
The role of France is to defend multilateralism and to continue to cooperate for common interests without having to compromise on important themes and values.
The G20 leaders have already made concessions to Trump, despite the contradiction to some principles of the group and the prospect that they could become imitators. On climate change, the Paris agreement “irreversible”, but the US is allowed to sell shale gas around the world. In trade, the G20 is fighting protectionism, but recognizes the role of “legitimate trade defense instruments”. These concessions were designed to keep trump in the G20, just as his invitation to Paris on 14 July should “return the trump circle.”
Now the question is how France and its European partners are willing to sacrifice your values and principles of foreign policy to maintain communications with Washington. What aspects of the international order, we certainly want to keep and which ones we are willing to potentially irreversible concessions? This should reflect all partners of the US before you reach out to Trump.
Alexandra de Hoop Sheffer, a political scientist, Director of the Paris office of the Marshall Fund.