Interview: Marc Ellenbogen, American diplomat, examines US foreign policy and the outcomes of President Trump’s unilateralism
Marc Ellenbogen, American Diplomat and Chairman of the Global Panel Foundation, participating as a MEDays 2018 speaker explains in the following interview the drastic shifts in American politics under George W. Bush, and more recently under the Trump administration. He also examines the effects of President Trump’s unilateralism on US pre-eminence and its failed role in solving the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
President Trump does not have a peace plan for the Palestinians and Israelis, and frankly he does not even care to have one!
Why do US policy shift so drastically from Clinton to Bush, and then from Obama to Trump?
The shift from Clinton to Bush can be explained by looking at the context. Under Clinton, the cold war had ended and he believed in negotiations, and there was a mood of collaboration; by the time Bush came around, new tensions arose and 9/11 made the US more hostile towards the Middle East and other players in the world. As for the drastic shift from the Obama to the Trump administration, unfortunately, President Obama thought that the US should recuse itself and left a gap for somebody like Donald Trump to come and intercede in these insufficient conditions regrettably. As the Obama administration recused us from negotiations in Korea, in the Middle East, the Palestinian Territories and many other parts of the world, this left a gap for China, Russia to come in and therefore open the way for Trump to come along and say “America First”.
I think that the days where the US was the world’s policeman are over.
Will Trump unilateralism affect US preeminence? Do you think new alliances can counterweight its predominance?
If President Trump pisses off enough Europeans and Arabic countries, and other parts of the world, and decide to form cooperation, which they are beginning to do, the EU is talking about military, Europe is finally talking about paying its 2% for NATO, focusing on the Middle East: Yes. But on the other hand, I think that the days where the US was the world’s policeman are over.
In your view, does Trump have a real peace plan for the Palestinians and Israelis?
No, I think he does not have a plan and frankly he does not even care to have one!
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