Donald Trump is an ignorant buffoon who goes into meetings with other world leaders and asks stupid questions (yes, there are stupid questions) and generally alienates people. And he has one twisted, narcissistic foreign policy objective. According to top European diplomats, Trump is:
… chiefly driven by an obsession with unravelling Barack Obama’s policies. “It’s his only real position,” one European diplomat said. “He will ask: ‘Did Obama approve this?’ And if the answer is affirmative, he will say: ‘We don’t.’ He won’t even want to listen to the arguments or have a debate. He is obsessed with Obama.”
But there’s an even bigger problem when it comes to relationships with America’s European allies, as Buzzfeed’s Alberto Nardelli reports. And it’s a familiar problem, stemming from Trump’s weakness as a leader:
“He’s not the kind of person you can have a discussion about how to deal with [Fayez] al-Sarraj [the prime minister of Libya],” the official added. “So you look for people around him, and that is where it’s a problem: The constant upheaval, it’s unclear who has influence, who is close to the president.” […]
The officials revealed that at international meetings, Trump has openly mocked his own aides, contradicting and arguing with them in front of other leaders. That has compounded the impression of an administration in chaos. “We can hear everything, it’s weird,” one diplomat said. […]
“The White House lacks crucial expertise,” one said. “The State Department and others are isolated. You have the generals, the National Security Council, and then a void. There aren’t enough diplomats, experts etc. in the White House. [Secretary of state Rex] Tillerson has a small team. Does Trump listen to [James] Mattis [secretary of defence], [H.R.] McMaster [national security adviser], to the experts?”
Anytime someone’s asking “Does Trump listen to …” and the final words are anything but “his own ego,” you have to hope it’s a rhetorical question.
This is a Creative Commons article. The original version of this article appeared here.