A dangerous bloc confrontation

Suddenly the tide is turning. Foreign policy hardens. The sanctions spiral is running. The EU is taking refuge in the arms of the US – as if Reagan and Bush Jr. and had never existed.

“Time to restore our transatlantic alliance,” EU Council President Michel tweeted on Tuesday. He had invited US President Biden to attend the EU summit on Thursday.

The invitation did not come as a surprise, many had expected Biden earlier. A few weeks ago it would have been a nice get-together. But now the virtual meeting takes on a special, threatening significance.

Just recently, the EU, the USA, the UK and Canada imposed new sanctions against China. Then China fired back – and punished the European Parliament, but also the EU ambassadors responsible for security policy.

Last but not least, Russia’s Foreign Minister Lavrov declared that relations with the EU had been destroyed and that from now on they would only talk to individual European countries.

Within just two days, the finely spun network of diplomatic relations that had grown in the three decades after the Cold War has been torn apart.

And now comes Biden. The US president is speaking at a summit where the EU wants to redefine its relationship with Russia, of all things. At a time when Brussels is also talking about a “low point”.

What should we expect from this? Not too much, I would say. So far, Biden has failed to offer new perspectives on foreign policy. He has called Russia’s Putin a “killer” and threatened him.

And the EU has backed him. This or something similar will now be repeated at the summit. Everyone will applaud, the media will celebrate the rebirth of transatlantic friendship.

But in reality, something will be broken. We will witness a dangerous bloc confrontation – and this in the middle of a global crisis in which all great powers should cooperate more than ever…

Translated with www.DeepL.com/Translator (free version). The original post (in German) is here