As Donald Trump prepares to travel to Germany for the G20 summit, he has succeeded in getting the country he leads defriended:
In their campaign program for the German election, Chancellor Angela Merkel’s conservatives have dropped the term “friend” in describing the relationship with the United States.
Four years ago, the joint program of her Christian Democratic Union (CDU) and its Bavarian sister party, the Christian Social Union (CSU), referred to the United States as Germany’s “most important friend” outside of Europe.
The 2013 program also described the “friendship” with Washington as a “cornerstone” of Germany’s international relations and talked about strengthening transatlantic economic ties through the removal of trade barriers.
But the words “friend” and “friendship” are missing from the latest election program – entitled “For a Germany in which we live well and happily” – which Merkel and CSU leader Horst Seehofer presented on Monday ahead of a Sept. 24 election.
The German people are similarly unimpressed with our new president.
A survey by the Pew Research Center last week showed that just 35 percent of Germans have a favorable view of the United States, down from 57 percent at the end of President Barack Obama’s term.
I don’t really care if this helps or hurts Trump politically here at home. It’s an indication that he’s failing to lead the Western world and putting American interests at risk.