Ahead of U.S. President Joe Biden’s first trip abroad, he argues that Western democracies can withstand “current threats.”
U.S. President Joe Biden will travel this week in Europe to bring together Western democracies to meet the global challenges of the coronavirus pandemic and climate change, while facing threats from Russia and China.
Biden will to meet in the United Kingdom with leaders of the group of seven (G7) industrialized nations and in Brussels with NATO allies before ending their first trip abroad with meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin in Geneva.
Biden, who faces challenges to U.S. democracy at home after devastating losses of nearly 600,000 in the COVID-19 pandemic, framed the moment as a call to action for Western democracies.
“This is a crucial question of our time: can democracies come together to give real results to our people in a rapidly changing world?” wrote the president of the United States in The Washington Post.
“Will the democratic alliances and institutions that shaped much of the last century demonstrate their capacity against current threats and adversaries? I think the answer is yes. And this week in Europe, we have the opportunity to prove it. “
Biden faces a skeptical audience in Europe, where the U.S. reputation as the world’s leading power has suffered since the pandemic began, while China’s reputation has risen slightly at the moment.
And Biden’s election has not improved the U.S. position, according to a new poll, despite the perception within the U.S. that its global influence is increasing.
“The first three months of the Biden administration have not affected French and German views on U.S. influence in the world,” the study by the German Marshall Fund and the Bertelsmann Foundation said, according to Reuters news agency. .
Meanwhile, the US faces a renewed challenge of its role in the Middle East, continued military threats in Ukraine and Russia’s cyberattacks, and an emerging geostrategic challenge from China.
Currently, conditions in the Middle East are not conducive to moving towards a two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, although the Biden administration remains committed to this, Secretary of State Antony Blinken said on June 6.
“We have just come out of the violence in Gaza and elsewhere,” Blinken said in a television interview in the United States.
“We are working very hard not only to make sure the ceasefire stays in place, but to start addressing the humanitarian situation in Gaza,” Blinken told the Axios newspaper.
“Over time, if we can build a little more hope, a little more trust, a little more trust, there may be conditions to re-engage in two states,” Blinken said.
Blinken reiterated that the Biden administration’s opening approach to Russia, which he described as a test, would be a compromise. But it also issued a stern warning about recent cyberattacks emanating from Russia.
“We are ready if Russia chooses to continue reckless and aggressive actions, we are ready to face it, as we have done. Instead, if it chooses a different course, we are willing to participate,” Blinken told Axios.
“There are things we can do together to advance the security of our people, the Russian people, the people of the world: strategic stability, arms control. So we will explore it. We must test the proposal and the the best way to do that is for the two presidents to meet face to face, ”Blinken said.
Blinken said the administration will push the Chinese authorities for more transparency in international investigations into the origins of the COVID-19 virus. “That has to happen,” he told Axios.