Joe Biden comes to Europe, but is avoiding Poland. A clear indication that compared to the Trump presidency, we are less important to the United States today. But as it nears the end of Biden’s term in office, that will change.
Pictured: Barack Obama and Joe BidenSource: oriental news
political déjà vu. Barack Obama, as President of the United States, announced the withdrawal from the plan to place elements of the missile shield in Poland. In addition, he did this on September 17, that is, on the 70th anniversary of the Soviet attack on Poland. It is hard to imagine a greater insult to our country. In conjunction with the just-announced “Great Reset” in US-Russia relations, it looked like a situation in which Poland was once again turning into a country in the “no man’s land” belt, with powers all over our heads.
Now, the recently elected president, Joe Biden, is making his first visit to Europe. Right before the CNN interview by Obama. He cited Poland and Hungary as examples of non-democratic countries. “They were well-functioning democracies 10 years ago, basically becoming authoritarians,” Biden’s two-term former president said. Besides, the current tenant of the White House overlooks Poland and Hungary with a wide berth, it’s hard not to see an analogy with the situation on September 17, 2009. Perhaps not directly – but Mark Twain says history does. It doesn’t repeat itself, but rhymes, here seem to fit very neatly.
killer and values
Why Obama Did he say that before Biden left? Since the simplest explanation is usually the most likely, it must be considered that he did so on behalf of his former deputy. Biden – as the current president – is not right to say certain things. Obama, like his predecessor, can hit the bridge straight. And since Democrats have always liked to present themselves as defenders of values (thus emphasizing the contrast to Trump, who practices transactional politics), they emphasized this element. Their constituents must be satisfied.
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Obama’s words (implied: BidenIt wasn’t just a reminder that Democrats uphold values. These words were also of great importance in difficult politics. It should be read in two dimensions. First, the dimensions of Democrats versus Republicans. Trump placed a great deal of emphasis on cooperation with Poland (to a lesser extent with Hungary, although relations between Washington and Budapest improved markedly during his tenure in office), so Biden had to disassociate himself from this policy spectacularly. And that’s what he does. During this visit bypass Poland, in addition to Obama says what he says. Foreign policy in the service of domestic policy.
And there is a second dimension – a truly international one. Posted by Biden in the Washington Post. In it he clearly wrote that he was coming to Europe to build a coalition of nations here that would help the United States in the global competition with China. It depends primarily on NATO countries (including Germany – another obvious change in US policy compared to Trump’s term, which Berlin avoided), but also on Russia. Although in the cited text he clearly defines the Kremlin’s actions as “harmful” (and recently called Putin a “murderer”), he seeks an agreement with it.
polluted by Trump
And Poland? Ukraine? Central Europe? They are waiting. This is not the time to declare that we have been left alone, that our allies have left us alone, and that America has abandoned us. No. The United States simply knows that the countries of our region have little room for maneuver. This is especially true for Poland. For political and historical reasons, it is difficult for us to build an alliance with Russia and Germany. The United States remains. Washington understands this.
It was different under Trump primarily because he did not find an agreement with Moscow or Berlin. And since America needed a reliable ally in this part of the world, cooperation between Poland and the United States suddenly flourished.
But Biden has a different idea. He has already restored relations with Germany, and may seriously consider resetting relations with Russia. Naturally, relations with us lie in the background. We transition from a self-portrait to a middleweight partner who can be educated on issues of values when appropriate for a political conundrum.
Or is Biden really after values? If so, he would have been consistent in that. And it’s not – as evidenced by the times when the vice president and Obama were his boss. At that time, the White House also gave us insults, as reported at the beginning of the situation on September 17. At the same time, he strengthened relations with Germany and Russia. But all of that was interrupted once Putin seized Crimea and Berlin did nothing to stop it.
Then Obama made an immediate decision to bring American troops into Poland, and he generally became very active. He taught Poland about values, but at the same time it was clear that – disappointed with the Kremlin – he was betting on us.
For now, Biden is wearing the same shoes. Even Edward Lucas wrote that he was making the same mistakes as Obama. However, nothing happens twice. History does not repeat itself, it just rhymes. Because if it is repeated literally, we will see a repeat of the situation in Crimea, and yet it is hard to believe that the Americans will allow it to happen again.
Poland must wait. In Biden’s eyes, the current ruling team is “tainted” with cooperation with Trump, and neighboring capitals are now more important. But we also have strong advantages. Most important: We are not trying to manipulate or deceive America. Neither Germany nor (even less so) Russia can say that. We are trustworthy and predictable in our relations with Washington. It will pay off. Maybe not in the next few months, but in two or three years. This has been the dynamic of our relationship since the Bill Clinton era. So far, nothing has happened that indicates a different development.
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