This year’s events have been anything but cordial. German Chancellor Angela Merkel said that she was, effectively, done with counting on the Americans siting the Americans withdraw from Syria as a huge mistake. Merkel drew hug applause for her remarks – not surprising since she was on her home turf. American Vice President Mike Pence, on the other hand, stood up to scold his allies for sticking with a multilateral Iranian agreement. He was rewarded with stone-cold silence. This exchange represents the growing gap between the European and American relationship. Open contempt for American policies would have once been unthinkable. In fact, A new Pew Research Center poll, published in the report, suggests that Germans believe Russia's Vladimir Putin and China's Xi Jinping handle world affairs better than Trump does.
Trump portrays the NATO alliance as a protection racket. He questions not only the rationale behind the mutual defense treaty, but suggests that he does not necessarily believe in its founding principle, basically that an attack against one is an attack upon all. However Europeans will point out that it’s this very same principle that NATO responded to the 9/11 attacks on the American homeland and sent European and other troops to war in Afghanistan.
It doesn’t look like relationships between Europe and America are going to mend anytime soon. With the 2020 election less than two years away, only time will tell if things are going to change. A lot will depend on whether Trump gets re-elected or not.