Allies despair as Trump abandons America's leadership role at a time of global crisis
The United States has scaled back its role on the world stage, taken actions that are undermining efforts to battle the coronavirus pandemic and left the international community without a traditional global leader, according to experts, diplomats and analysts.
The US -- usually at the head of the table helping to coordinate in global crises -- has declined to take a seat at virtual international meetings convened by the World Health Organization and the European Union to coordinate work on potentially lifesaving vaccines.
The US has similarly blocked expressions of global unity at G7 and G20 meetings due to anger about China and the WHO.
- Thomas Gomart, director of the Paris-based French Institute of International Relations, said that Europe was watching Trump's response to the pandemic in amazement, calling his behavior "stranger than fiction."
- "He provides for us a very mixed balance of amusement and a sadness, which is just not what is expected from a US president," Gomart said, an assessment that Spain's Javier del Pino, a leading journalist, shared. "The way we look at Trump, it was a lot of fun at first," del Pino said. "It's not funny anymore."