Donald Trump’s unusual diplomatic behaviour

Written By: - Date published: 11:02 am, June 11th, 2018 - 44 comments
Categories: Donald Trump, International, uncategorized, us politics - Tags: , , ,

If someone had said two years ago that the President of the United States would be picking a fight with Canada while at the same time buddying up to North Korea they would have been met with ridicule. And questions about their sanity.

But this is what is currently happening.

It started with Donald Trump picking a fight with Canada about agricultural tariffs just before the G7 leaders were to meet in Canada.  And Trudeau had made it clear that Canada opposed being treated in this way by its nearest and closest neighbour.

Justin Trudeau responded by trolling Trump with the most exquisite gift that could be imagined, a photo of the Hotel that Trump’s grandfather used to run a brothel from.

Someone more astute than Trump must have noticed and told Trump because his demeanour at the G7 meeting being held in Canada it denigrated into a G6 verses Trump stand off.

Angela Merkel Donald Trump G7

Then after the usual communique was signed Trump threw a big spanner into it by essentially repudiating it.

From the Guardian:

Donald Trump has left the G7 network of global cooperation in disarray after he pulled the US out of a previously agreed summit communique, blaming the Canadian prime minister Justin Trudeau whom he derided as “dishonest and weak”.

The US president, who arrived at the summit in Canada late and left early to fly to Singapore to prepare for his summit with Kim Jong-un, shocked fellow leaders with a bellicose press conference on Saturday in which he attacked the trade policies of other countries.

The US had nevertheless appeared to agree a form of words on contentious issues thanks to an all-night negotiating session by officials from all sides.

But after leaving for Singapore, Trump tweeted personal attacks on Trudeau and said that he had told his representatives not to sign the summit communique, turning what had already been a tense meeting of the world’s leading industrialised democracies into a fiasco.

“PM Justin Trudeau acted so meek and mild,” he tweeted. “Only to give a news conference after I left saying that ‘US tariffs were kind of insulting’ and ‘he will not be pushed around’.

“Very dishonest and weak” he claimed, adding in a separate tweet: “I have instructed our US reps not to endorse the communique.”

The tweets are outrageous.

And they were followed up by the Trump regime throwing further barbs at the Canadians. Again from the Guardian:

Donald’s Trump’s chief economic adviser said the US pulled out of a G7 communique because the Canadian prime minister, Justin Trudeau, “stabbed us in the back” and accused the leader of one America’s most important allies of playing a “sophomoric political stunt for domestic consumption”.

In an extraordinary interview with CNN’s State of the Union on Sunday, Larry Kudlow, who was present for negotiations at the G7 summit in Quebec over the weekend, said Trudeau had instigated “a betrayal” and was “essentially double-crossing President Trump”.

Trudeau used a media conference on Saturday to reject a US demand for a sunset clause in the North American trade agreement, Nafta, that Trump has at different times pressed to abolish or renegotiate. The prime minister also said Canada would “move forward with retaliatory measures” in response to the Trump administration’s move to impose tariffs on aluminium and steel imports from the European Union, Mexico and Canada.

The move enraged Trump, who branded his Canadian counterpart “dishonest and weak” in a furious tweet, announcing the US would pull out of an agreed communique.

The G7 communique said the leaders of seven of the most powerful countries in the world agreed on the need for “free, fair, and mutually beneficial trade” and the importance of fighting protectionism.

Kudlow added that Trump had made the decision to pull out of the agreement in an attempt to save face ahead of his historic summit with North Korean leader, Kim Jong-un, in Singapore.

“Potus [the president of the United States] is not going to let a Canadian prime minister push him around – push him, Potus around, on the eve of this,” Kudlow said. “He is not going to permit any show of weakness on the trip to negotiate with North Korea. Nor should he.”

And Trump is now in Singapore where he will meet with North Korean leader Kim Jon Un. The contrast in treatment is startling.

I cannot blame Trudeau for his responses to America’s threatened imposition of tariffs. I am sure that politically Trumps’s behaviour is not hurting Trudeau.

It is astounding that international relationships amongst Western Nations is now dependent on leaders not showing Trump up. And it is very clear that the six other members of the G7 are united in their view of who is in the right and who is in the wrong.

44 comments on “Donald Trump’s unusual diplomatic behaviour”

  1. dukeofurl 1

    Highlight of the Summit was all the pictures of Trudeau , who is 6ft 2in towering over Trump who claims he is 6ft 3 in.
    No wonder he couldnt wait to get to Singapore and meet Kin Joung Un who may be only 5ft 7in ( in special shoes)

  2. One Anonymous Bloke 2

    Some context.

    Average tariff rates charged by G-7 nations:
    USA: 1.6%
    EU: 1.6%
    UK: 1.6%
    Italy: 1.6%
    Germany: 1.6%
    France: 1.6%
    Japan: 1.4%
    Canada: 0.8%

    h/t Justin Wolters via Russell Brown.

  3. Carolyn_Nth 3

    The crux of the dispute is that Canada has a regulated dairy industry to stop over production, and to maintain a high quality product. The US is producing milk and milk products more cheaply, but they have over produced so are looking for external markets to dump their products.

    It tends to make Canadian ilk products more expensive for Canadians, and, to protect against cheaper US milk creating an over-supply and damaging Canadian dairy production, they have high tariffs.

    The Boston Globe on this.

    Canadian dairy farmers have been struggling to contain a deepening crisis that is threatening the long-term survival of the carefully calibrated supply-management regime. That balance has been upended by the surge of milk-protein imports, a glut of skim milk and underinvestment in dairy processing. Canada is producing too much milk, but not enough butter, and that is putting downward pressure on overall farm incomes. U.S. farmers, meanwhile, are suffering from overproduction and falling global milk prices. The United States enjoys a large dairy trade surplus with Canada.

    The Guardian reports:

    In 2016, Canada imported dairy products from the US worth five times more than the small amount it exported there. “I would call that a pretty good deal,” she told the House of Commons.

    Canadian farmers point out that despite the tariffs that protect them, imports make up 10% of the country’s dairy consumption. By contrast, the US restricts dairy imports to 3% of domestic consumption. “That just screams hypocrisy to me,” Muirhead said. “I don’t understand how they can get away with these positions.”

    Interesting that Trump accuses Trudeau of being “weak”. He seems to prefer other authoritarian leaders like Putin and Kim Jong-un.

    • JessNZ 3.1

      Interesting that protectionism for the dairy industry is destabilising Western trade… NZ might want to learn some lessons! Of course, for most leaders, this would be unusual behaviour, but it’s pretty typical for Trump.

      • Draco T Bastard 3.1.1

        Interesting that protectionism for the dairy industry is destabilising Western trade…

        Is it?

        Or is it the over-investment and over-production of dairy in the US and EU?

        The US seems to be demanding that they be able to dump their over-production into Canada.

        As I’ve said before: All countries can produce their own food and thus trade in food must eventually cease.

        Produced goods like electronics may take longer but has the same result. Every country is quite capable of producing them from their own resources and at the same efficiency.

        To me it’s much better to work on that principle and develop the local economy than it is to think that trade will always be there to take the over-production.

        • JessNZ 3.1.1.1

          Yes, that’s at least one of the lessons NZ ought to be taking from this instead of intensifying dairy for export.

          Overinvestment and overproduction is another form of protectionism. The US govt forces cheese into the food stamp programmes and into school lunches.

    • D'Esterre 3.2

      Carolyn_Nth: “authoritarian leaders like Putin…”

      Putin is a liberal, not an authoritarian. Although you’d not find that out reading the Guardian or the Boston Globe.

      Putin’s default liberalism is at the heart of some of the opposition to him in Russia: such people would prefer that he were more of a nationalist.

      I recommend to you Russian language news sites: you’ll get a much more nuanced view of what’s going on in Russia.

      • Macro 3.2.1

        Yes he is very liberal with handing out death to those who oppose him or openly criticise him. Some might want to call that authoritarian however.

        • D'Esterre 3.2.1.1

          Macro: ” with handing out death to those who oppose him or openly criticise him.”

          Oh gawd, not that hoary old chestnut again! I’ve read those lists several times, seen analysis of them, even. You know, who died when and where. None of that constitutes evidence of Putin having ordered deaths. I note how many of them died in the 1990s: the Chechen wars, more likely. Or the mafia.

          Do you speak or read Russian? I’m guessing not; because if you did, you’d know just how much opposition opinion flourishes in Russia, and manages to get itself onto the politics and current affairs shows. There aren’t any dissidents: democracies don’t have them. People such as the idiot Babchenko are self-described dissidents, struggling for relevance and to be noticed. You know why Babchenko fled to the Ukraine, don’t you? The man’s a plonker.

      • solkta 3.2.2

        Yes that’s right, and Richard Pebble is a socialist

        • Tamati Tautuhi 3.2.2.1

          Richard Prebble was Roger Douglas’s best mate he would have sold his grandmother for sixpence. He was a pure neoliberalist.

          • solkta 3.2.2.1.1

            Yes, that’s right, Putin is a fascist.

            • D'Esterre 3.2.2.1.1.1

              solkta: “Richard Pebble is a socialist”

              He certainly was, back in the day. I remember it well. But probably before you were born.

              “Putin is a fascist.”

              And your evidence for this is……?

              • One Anonymous Bloke

                …abundant, well documented and public, no matter how much the US does it too.

              • solkta

                What evidence do you have that he is a liberal? All you’ve said is: “Russian language news sites”

  4. SPC 4

    This is normal for Trump, he bullies juniors (sub-contractors out of full pay for the work) and negotiates with outside parties (banks/competitors).

    Clearly he sees Xi and Putin as equals and NATO partners as his juniors.

    Until the EU sends a message by buying Gulf oil in euros this will not change.

  5. Anne 5

    So, what’s changed.

    As this photo suggests, The Chump should be ignored by everybody. Leave him to shout and holler like the demented kid he is, and just come down hard on him when he’s naughty. Y,know like… telling lies about tarrifs and things and slapping them willy-nilly on his mates.

  6. Gosman 6

    Canada should call his bluff then and drop all Dairy tariffs and call on the US to do the same.

    • Barfly 6.1

      No they should call for subsidies to both be removed

      • Gosman 6.1.1

        Why? If a nation wants to waste money subsidising the consumers of your country why would you want them to stop doing so?

    • One Anonymous Bloke 6.2

      Put sanctions on his business interests and real estate.

  7. Heather Tanguay 7

    Remember the TV show called Southpark, the famous song was ‘Blame it on Canada’ this is just another chorus of the same song

  8. Sanctuary 8

    Invade the USA and burn down the White House again I say!

    • dukeofurl 8.1

      US burned Toronto first before the British attacked Washington a year later

    • Adrian 8.2

      When Trump accused Canada of burning the White House down I bet Trudeau was biting his lip wanting to say “A pity you wer’nt fucking in it!.

      • dukeofurl 8.2.1

        While there certainly was battles along the common border that would have involved canadians the landing of British troops in Cheseapeake Bay area and the occupation of Washington DC wouldnt have involved any canadians

        The interesting thing about 1812 war is that it originated by a trade blockade by the British against Napoleonic Europe along with other items like US coveting territory in Canada ( the name for the St Lawrence valley area at the time) and the maritime provinces

  9. Interesting that protectionism for the dairy industry is destabilising Western trade… NZ might want to learn some lessons! Of course, for most leaders, this would be unusual behaviour, but it’s pretty typical for Trump.

  10. North 12

    Trump: “America won’t be pushed around !”

    Trudeau: “Canada won’t be pushed around !”

    Trump: “Ooh he hit me !”

    Classic bully shit. Trump is scum !

  11. Tamati Tautuhi 13

    Richard Prebble was Roger Douglas’s best mate he would have sold his grandmother for sixpence. He was a pure neoliberalist.

  12. D'Esterre 14

    Yay for Trump! Sticking it to the odious Trudeau and the equally odious president diacritic of France, the one who’s married to his mother. And schoolmarm May. And “I-never-met-a-migrant-I-didn’t-like” Merkel. Makes my heart sing….
    I wonder whether this is his strategy: if Congress and the bureaucracy won’t let him implement his plans, he’ll follow theirs and run them into the ground. It’s beginning to look as if that’s his game.
    The Kremlin’s response to Trump’s urging that Russia be readmitted to the G8 could be glossed as “meh”. There’s no advantage to reforming the G8; the trust on Russia’s part is gone and cannot be recovered, except by huge efforts that the Americans and Euros are unwilling to make. Italy actually has been hurting sufficiently in the pocket to buck the consensus on the subject, but the rest have yet to suffer enough to change their minds. Though it looks like that suffering may be coming for all of them.

    • One Anonymous Bloke 14.1

      How much “suffering” do you suppose a country with an economy smaller than Australia’s can inflict?

      I don’t think Putin’s stupid enough to expose himself to that much more humiliation.

  13. Richard McGrath 15

    The photo of G7 leaders looks to me like Fraulein Merkel trying to bully Trump, with Abe siding with The Donald. A later photograph suggested a fairly good-natured conversation was taking place.

    And a G6 vs Trump split seems unlikely to me. While FM and The Eyebrow probably have issues with DJT, Italy and Japan seem to me more likely to side with him against the European establishment.

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