Foreign Diplomats: Trump Presidency 'Threat To Peace And Prosperity'

Foreign Diplomats: Trump Presidency ‘Threat To Peace And Prosperity’

It is no secret that Donald Trump— presidential candidate and proto-fascist — has been raising an eyebrow or two on the world stage. My colleague, Nikita Oliver-Lew, has amply documented the bemusement and alarm that Trump’s candidacy has provoked among the residents of Europe. But it isn’t just the general population of other nations who find the thought of a Trump presidency to be worrisome; foreign diplomats are starting to openly express their concern and dismay at the prospect:

“Foreign diplomats are expressing alarm to U.S. government officials about what they say are inflammatory and insulting public statements by Republican presidential front-runner Donald Trump, according to senior U.S. officials. Officials from Europe, the Middle East, Latin America and Asia have complained in recent private conversations, mostly about the xenophobic nature of Trump’s statements, said three U.S. officials, who all declined to be identified. ‘As the (Trump) rhetoric has continued, and in some cases amped up, so, too, have concerns by certain leaders around the world,’ said one of the officials. The three officials declined to disclose a full list of countries whose diplomats have complained, but two said they included at least India, South Korea, Japan and Mexico. U.S. officials said it was highly unusual for foreign diplomats to express concern, even privately, about candidates in the midst of a presidential campaign. U.S. allies in particular usually don’t want to be seen as meddling in domestic politics, mindful that they will have to work with whoever wins.”

It is doubtful that these latest revelations will have much impact on Trump’s campaign. His supporters are a xenophobic bunch, suspicious of Europe’s socialist hi-jinks, and are likely to view these attacks on Trump as a badge of honor. They follow the same thought processes that resulted in “Freedom Fries,” regarding Europe as the official punching bag of America’s foreign policy. For this crowd, criticism from foreign diplomats is nothing more than a sign that Trump is doing something right. But let us put Trump’s mouth-breathing following aside for the moment, since their opinions have less to do with reasoned analysis and more to do with reflexive reaction.

Let’s take a look at the nations whose diplomats have spoken out against Trump.

Who have we heard from thus far? Let’s see.  We have the flamingly liberal Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, David Cameron:

“’I think the problem with what Donald Trump has said, and what some others say too, is they are making a fundamental mistake of trying to blame all of Islam and all Muslims for what is the ideology and the actions of a minority, and I think that’s wrong. In many ways, it actually helps the extremists, because they want to create a clash of civilisations between Islam and Christianity, or Islam and the west.'”

Next we have German Economy Minister, Sigmar Gabriel:

“‘Whether Donald Trump, Marine Le Pen or Geert Wilders – all these right-wing populists are not only a threat to peace and social cohesion, but also to economic development,’ Mr Gabriel told Welt am Sonntag newspaper in an interview published on Sunday. He said Mr Trump and French National Front leader Ms Le Pen were promising voters ‘a way back into a fairytale world’ in which economic activity only happened within national borders, but history had shown such isolated economies had no prospect.”

And then we have Mexico’s Foreign Affairs Secretary, Claudia Ruiz Massieu:

In the sharpest official Mexican government comments to date on Republican front-runner Donald Trump, the foreign minister called Trump’s policies and comments ‘ignorant and racist’ and his proposed wall on the U.S.-Mexico border ‘absurd.’ . . .’When an apple’s red, it is red. When you say ignorant things, you’re ignorant,’ said Foreign Affairs Secretary Claudia Ruiz Massieu, Mexico’s top diplomat. ‘It is impossible to think of a 2,000-mile border being walled off and trade between our two countries stopped,’ Ruiz Massieu said. ‘It is impractical, inefficient, wrong and, frankly, it is not an intelligent thing to do.'”

To that list we can now add diplomats in Japan, South Korea, and India. Funny thing about all of these countries: they are all—to one degree or another—nominally allied with the United States. There are no teams in international relations, but there is still a fair amount of shared common interests between the United States and each of the nations in question. Who has yet to chime in on the thought of a Trump presidency? A number of countries with whom we enjoy rather more adversarial relations: Iran, Iraq, Saudi Arabia. Hell, Russia’s Vladimir Putin has made it plain that he has high hopes for a Trump regime.

Our allies are alarmed at the consequences of a Trump presidency, and our “enemies” are biting their tongues.   All the talk of American exceptionalism and “making America great again” cannot change the fact that the nation does not exist in a vacuum. America has a disproportionate impact on global politics and, with a hypothetical Trump presidency on the horizon, this impact has the potential to turn toxic. When our best friends on the global stage are taking the unprecedented step of warning us of this possibility, perhaps it would be wise to listen. This isn’t an attack on America — it is an intervention.

Image: Michael Vadon, Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 2.0 Generic; Official CTBTO Photostream, Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 2.0 Generic