Macron Goes to China

Arthur Goldhammer
8 January 2018

Has there ever been a luckier politician than Emmanuel Macron? Fortuna smiled on his presidential run. Opposition to his reforms collapsed with a whimper. And now he is poised to propose himself as the world’s principal interlocutor with China. A truculent Trump has taken himself off the table, and Angela Merkel has been sidelined by domestic political complications. So Macron is free to take the long view, which appeals to the Chinese. He is free to push for action on climate change, an issue on which Trump’s stupidity and unilaterlaism play into the hands of cannier competitors. Behind him he has some of Europe’s mightiest industrial powers, with Airbus and Areva in the vanguard. Boeing can only look on helplessly as Trump squanders America’s soft power. The Asian theater is ready-made to showcase Macron’s talents, and he is likely to avail himself of this opportunity to make himself a force to reckon with on the world stage. Well played, but also, what luck!

1 Comment

  • Ruth Ann Lake says:

    I particularly like your comments about Macron harnessing the recent attractiveness of the French “soft power” to approach China, Africa, the Middle East (his aid to Hariri in Lebanon was evident) as Trump squanders American soft power around the world…. this is the renewed and more powerful “French brand” gaining recognition while the “Brand USA” has been badly tarnished with one tweet after another emanating from DT’s little fingers. The fact that Macron speaks a good level of English (after the linguistic disaster of Hollande) helps significantly… he may indeed be lucky but his preparation in terms of knowledge of the finance and economics sectors, coaching from Brigitte on how to use knowledge of theater to his advantage and lets face it, even his command of English are not just luck, they reflect preparation and practice… for all those of us based in France as back home in the States, I wish him continued luck and preparation. A little more French (European) soft power can be a very good direction for many around the globe.

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