U.S. President Donald Trump has a reputation for taking shots at the European Union. Since taking office, he’s regularly berated the EU for failing to pull its own weight in NATO and with regard to military defense. He also hasn’t been shy in expressing his desire to the United Kingdom break away from the supranational political and economic body.
Recently, the widely despised – by his own people, of course – French President Emmanuel Macron has called on Mr. Trump to “clarify his position” on the EU, which Trump certainly disparaged on more than one occasion.
In an interview in the latest edition of the left-leaning pseudointellectual New Yorker magazine that was published earlier in the week, Macron – in a veiled reference to Trump’s support for a hard Brexit – said, “What is certain is that we have some ambiguities, especially when you look at Trump’s position regarding Brexit.”
Macron’s interview comes a month after European his centrist-globalist La République En Marche (Republic on the Move) party were defeated by Marine Le Pen’s national populist National Rally party who topped the polls.
After the final EU election results were declared, Le Pen called on Macron to step down from his position after his party garnered a hair over 1/5 of the vote.
During in the interview with the New Yorker, when asked about last month’s EU election, Macron had this to say: “What is new on the European scale is that the rise of extremism, especially coming from the far right, is everywhere… A few months ago, a lot of people thought that this new coalition of the far right could have a majority or could block any majority within the European Parliament, which didn’t happen. Even if they were very much helped by foreign influences.”
After the interviewer asked Macron if he believed that Trump was one of those foreign influences, Macron refuted the claim while shaking his head and stressed that he himself does not “totally assimilate Trump to Steve Bannon”.
Mr. Bannon, the co-founder of Breitbart News and Trump’s former chief strategist, in the past year during the run-up to the European elections, had been living and traveling throughout Europe while he actively promoted the formation of a continental right-wing populist alliance. During the process, he lent his advisory support, time, and resources to a whole host of different national populist parties up until the night before May’s elections commenced.
His efforts – which seemed to be exerting some kind of effect on European politics – compelled europhile-in-chief Macron to lambaste Bannon for his attempts to supposedly “dismantle Europe”, as the former globalist banker who’s now the French president put it.
But, as if Trump’s feeling about the European Union were not already clear enough, he made them ever more distinct and more clear over the weekend during an interview with NBC. When asked about Europeans’ efforts to maintain the 2015 nuclear agreement with Iran which Trump tore up in May of last year, the president emphasized he “doesn’t care about the Europeans”.
He continued saying that the Europeans are “fine and making a lot of money” at the expense of the United States, since it’s America who “takes care of them”.,
“NATO, we spend a tremendous amount, a disproportionate amount. On trade, the European Union’s taken, really, they have really taken advantage of us for a long time,” Trump asserted.