After expressing her dissatisfaction with events and meetings that occurred at the recent G-7 summit, German Chancellor Angela Merkel has made it clear she no longer believes her country can rely on long time allies. Without naming names, it would appear she was referring to fragmented relationships with the post Brexit UK and the United States. It should be noted that the seven member countries, which included the US, UK, Germany, Japan, France, Canada, and Italy, left Merkel feeling as though she was standing alone in her positions related to world issues.
After developing strong relationships with former US President Barack Obama and former UK Prime Minister Tony Blair, the German leader has had difficulty dealing with current leaders such as US President Donald Trump. Unfortunately, the issues would seem to go much deeper than a differing ideology.
In recent months and weeks, Trump has been very critical of Merkel’s stance on immigration. He has also called out German automakers on a variety of issues. As the criticism has mounted, Merkel stated, “The times in which [Germany] could fully rely on others are partly over. I have experienced this in the last few days. We Europeans really have to take our destiny into our own hands.”
In what would appear to be a further shift in German diplomacy, Merkel has made an effort to show support for new French President-elect Emmanuel Macron. This shouldn’t come as a surprise since both leaders show an affinity for liberal causes such as global warming and open immigration policies.
Fortunately, the rest of EU remains optimistic about ongoing relationships with the UK and the US. According to EU Council President Donald Tusk:
“What I am absolutely sure after this meeting is that despite some extraordinary … expressions, behaviors, etc, etc, our partners in the G7 are much more responsible than the first impression after the election in the United States.”