The world wasn’t ready for Trump in 2016. It’s not making that mistake this time

The world wasn’t ready for Trump in 2016. It’s not making that mistake this time

Politico reports:

In Brussels, NATO officials have devised a plan to lock in long-term military support for Ukraine so that a possible Trump administration can’t get in the way.

In Ankara, Turkish officials have reviewed the Heritage Foundation’s Project 2025 policy road map for clues into Donald Trump’s designs on Syria.

In Atlanta, Austin and Lincoln, Nebraska, top ministers from Germany and Canada have met with Republican governors to shore up relations on the American right.

And in Washington, Trump’s return is the dominant topic at monthly breakfast meetings of ambassadors from European countries. At one of those meetings, the top envoy from one country asked his colleagues whether they were engaged in a fool’s errand.

“Can we really prepare for Trump?” this person asked, according to another top diplomat. “Or do we rather have to wait and see what the new reality would look like?”

Folly or not, the preparations are underway.

More than six months before the next American president takes office, there is already an extraordinarily advanced effort across the NATO alliance, and far beyond, to manage a potential transfer of power in America. With President Joe Biden listing badly in his bid for reelection, many allies anticipate that at this time next year they will be dealing with a new Trump administration — one defined by skepticism toward Europe, a strident strain of right-wing isolationism and a hard resolve to put confronting China above other global priorities.

In the run-up to this week’s NATO summit in Washington, POLITICO and the German newspaper Welt embarked together on a reporting project to assess how the world is preparing for Trump’s possible return to the White House; reporters for both publications interviewed more than 50 diplomats, lawmakers, experts and political strategists in NATO nations and elsewhere. Many of those people were granted anonymity to speak about sensitive matters of diplomacy and international security.

What emerged from this reporting was a picture of a world already bending to Trump’s will and scrambling to inoculate itself against the disruptions and crises that he might instigate. [Continue reading…]

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