World Joe Biden Has Damaged U.S.-Europe Relations Even More Than Donald Trump
New York Times quietly deletes claim Hunter Biden laptop story was 'unsubstantiated'
The New York Times quietly deleted the assertion that an October article from the New York Post about the business dealings of Joe Biden’s son Hunter was “unsubstantiated” in a reworked report on the Federal Election Commission dismissing a Republican complaint arguing Twitter violated election laws by blocking users from sharing the story during the heat of the 2020 election. © Provided by Washington Examiner When the New York Times posted the report early Monday afternoon, it read: “The Federal Election Commission has dismissed Republican accusations that Twitter violated election laws in October by blocking people from posting links to
Presidentmay have damaged U.S. relations with Europe even more than former President following recent actions by the administration that have garnered criticism from the ( ).
There has been particular anger in Europe following the creation of the AUKUS defense pact between the U.S., U.K. and Australia, especially given Australia's cancellation of a $65 billion contract for French-made submarines.
FEC says Twitter acted legally in blocking Hunter Biden laptop stories, pointing to claim of intel warnings about hacking
The Federal Elections Commission said on Wednesday its members unanimously rejected complaints from the Republican National Committee and others that Twitter’s decision to block the sharing of links to articles from the New York Post related to Hunter Biden's laptop constituted an illegal contribution to now-President Joe Biden’s candidacy. © Provided by Washington Examiner In announcing the decision, the FEC pointed to Twitter’s assertion that part of the reason it stopped the spread of the New York Post articles in October was over concerns that foreign actors obtained the salacious materials through hacking.
However, other issues have also played a part in what EU Commissioner Thierry Breton described asThe Biden administration's withdrawal of troops from Afghanistan and a recently lifted travel ban on fully vaccinated Europeans have also been points of contention.
Many critics charged that former President Trump had damaged relations with the EU by pursuing what he called an "America first" agenda.
Yet in his first eight months in office, Biden appears to have more seriously alienated key European allies and in particular France.
The French governmentfor consultation in the wake of the AUKUS deal—a relatively unusual move among the allies in modern times, while EU Commission President Ursula von der Leyen said France had been treated "in a way that is not acceptable, so we want to know what happened and why."
Tropical Storm Grace batters Haiti days after deadly quake: 'Countless Haitian families have lost everything'
A revitalized Tropical Storm Grace rolled across Haiti on Tuesday, pounding the region with drenching rains just days after a powerful earthquake.Up to 15 inches of rain were possible in some areas before the storm moves out Wednesday, forecasters said. The storm hit as thousands of Haitians dug through rubble looking for loved ones or hunted for shelter after Saturday's quake crumbled entire towns and left hospitals overwhelmed with the injured.
Ralph Schoellhammer, an assistant professor of international relations at Webster Vienna Private University in Vienna, told Newsweek that recalling the French ambassador to Washington "was never even considered during the Trump era."
"Although this might be an unpopular opinion on both sides of the Atlantic, I believe there is a case to be made that Donald Trump's foreign policy was not as disadvantageous for European interests as one might think, especially due to the sometimes-mocking rhetoric the former president used vis-à-vis the EU," Schoellhammer said.
"Some of the major foreign policy actions undertaken by the Trump administration including the final defeat ofand the killing of Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, increasing the pressure on Iran and countering Tehran clandestinely and openly - the assassination of Qasem Soleimani - as well as abandoning the Iran nuclear deal laid the groundwork for the Abraham Accords and a reordering of the Middle East that I believe could ultimately lead to more stability than the pre-Trump era status quo," he said.
Trump Organization defense lawyer expects more indictments in tax evasion case
Allen Weisselberg, the Trump Org's former chief financial officer, was in court Monday. He faces a 15-count indictment alleging criminal tax fraud.“We have strong reason to believe that there are other indictments coming,” Weisselberg's lawyer, Bryan Skarlatos, told Manhattan Supreme Court Justice Juan Merchan, according to Bloomberg.
"All these developments positively impacted overall European security, since any instability in the region directly affects migration movements and the threat of terrorism which remain two of the biggest concerns of internal EU politics.
"These developments came to an abrupt halt with the beginning of the Biden administration that came into office with the promise to revive transatlantic relations (or 'relentless diplomacy,' to) but in fact acted unilaterally on key issues, beginning with the execution of the complete withdrawal from Afghanistan that was not coordinated with any of the European partners," Schoellhammer went on.
"Donald Trump's demand for more military spending and building of capabilities of othermember states was sometimes interpreted as a threat to the alliance, but if one talks to EU bureaucrats today, it is Joe Biden's approach that has truly led to more and more calls by European policy makers to establish strategic and military autonomy from both NATO and the U.S."
Inside Biden's falling poll numbers: 5 reasons why the president's approval ratings have dropped
Perhaps most troubling for President Biden: His support among independent voters – who helped carry him to victory over Donald Trump – has cratered.Biden's job approval dipped below 50% in several polls for the first time last month, and this week brought new lows: Gallup found Biden's approval rating has fallen to 43%, a 6-percentage point drop since August and the lowest of his presidency. A new Pew Research Center survey released Thursday has Biden's approval rating at 44%.
Schoellhammer also said Biden's decision to waive U.S sanctions on the Nord Stream 2 pipeline will make Europe more dependent on Russia and "will have a negative impact on transatlantic relations" in the long run.
"This unilateral approach is now also apparent in the announcement of the AUKUS defense agreement. This is only on the surface about French submarines but is in fact an act of pushing Europe out of a new Indo-Pacific security architecture," he said.
France's 'Deal of the Century'
"When Australia agreed to buy French submarine technology in 2016, this was viewed as a 'deal of the century' in Paris that marked its deepening of strategic relations with Australia and maintaining an important role in the Indo-Pacific, including an alliance between India, Australia, and France that [French President]outlined as a possibility in 2018. And this deal of the century has now imploded without any consultation between France and the EU on one side and the U.S., UK., and Australia on the other side," Schoellhammer said.
"What was and is intended as a power balancing act aimed at containing and isolating China, has at this moment accomplished containing and isolating Europe," Schoellhammer said.
Strong quake hits Greek island of Crete; 1 dead, 9 injured
ATHENS, Greece (AP) — An earthquake with a preliminary magnitude of at least 5.8 struck the Greek island of Crete on Monday, killing one person and injuring several others, while damaging homes and churches and causing rock slides near the country's fourth-largest city. The quake sent people fleeing into the streets in the city of Heraklion, and schools were evacuated. Repeated aftershocks rattled the area, adding to damage in villages near the epicenter. The Athens Geodynamic Institute said the quake struck at 9:17 a.m. (0617 GMT), with an epicenter 246 kilometers (153 miles) south southeast of the Greek capital, Athens.
"It is important to understand that with Brexit and the German focus almost exclusively on domestic matters - there is a general election this coming Sunday, and foreign policy was barely mentioned during the entire campaign - French foreign policy is almost equivalent to EU foreign policy," he said.
"It is not a coincidence that over the last few days the EU came out forcefully in support of Paris, since it is clear to Brussels that any exclusion of France from the Indo-Pacific region is tantamount to an exclusion of the EU."
America's Best Interest
Thomas Gift, founding director of University College London's Centre on U.S. Politics, told Newsweek that Biden hadn't been afraid to come into conflict with allies.
"It's certainly reasonable to ask whether Biden's rhetorical commitments to multilateralism and sustained engagement with allies is matched by his actions. From alienatingover the Afghanistan withdrawal, to angering Emmanuel Macron over the U.S.-U.K.-Australia submarine deal, Biden hasn't shied away from dust-ups with some of America's closest allies," Gift said.
"Clearly, Biden's foreign policy hasn't come with the bluster of Trump or the bravado of his 'America First' sloganeering. Temperamentally, this is still the same Joe Biden who promised that 'America is back.' But Biden has, in his own way, proven that his decision-making will be animated by what he perceives to be in America's best interest," he said.
"For Biden, the real challenge will be in trying to move beyond recent impasses with European partners and identifying areas of shared policy priorities. Those include major global challenges, like tackling climate change, addressing COVID-19, and countering authoritarianism in places like Beijing and Moscow," Gift added.
Flooded Tennessee town wrestles with how, where to rebuild .
WAVERLY, Tenn. (AP) — In the 100 years that Jim Traylor’s family had lived in his house in rural Waverly, Tennessee, it hadn't once flooded. The normally shallow Trace Creek where he had fished and swam as a kid had never crossed the one-lane road that separated it from his home. That changed on Aug. 21, when more than 17 inches (43 centimeters) of rain just upstream transformed the usually placid waterway into a roiling river that rushed into his house and devastated the town, killing 20 people before it receded. The water was already halfway up his tires by the time the 79-year-old decided to flee.