The ‘Trump Effect’ in the US is already having a big impact on foreign policy
Posted On July 28, 2021
Foreign policy is being shaped by the “Trump Effect,” a term coined by one of Donald Trump’s most famous advisers to explain the American president’s unpredictability and willingness to act outside the norms of international relations.
“The Trump Effect is one of the most significant things that we’ve seen in foreign policy, because of the sheer unpredictability that he has,” said David Malpass, a professor of political science at the University of Maryland who is writing a book about the phenomenon.
“It’s the only thing that has changed so much in foreign relations since the 1970s, and it’s probably the most important thing that we’ll see for decades to come,” Malpass said.
The “Trump effect” is one reason Trump’s unpredictableness is so potent.
When Trump was president, his supporters believed the United States would be “taking care of business” and would soon be a leader in world affairs.
But he’s changed.
“If you go back to the Nixon era, we were the laughingstock of the world, but we were very different,” said Stephen Kinzer, an associate professor of international politics at Harvard University who studies international relations and public affairs.
“Trump has given a lot of people hope that we’re actually going to be an actual leader in the world.”
Trump has repeatedly threatened to leave the United Nations, called for a wall on the Mexican border and threatened to impose tariffs on Chinese goods.
In the past, Trump has also shown a willingness to engage in conflict, calling for the invasion of Iraq and for the use of nuclear weapons.
The president’s decision to take an unpopular military action against Syrian President Bashar al-Assad is a classic example of the “trump effect.”
While the U.S. military’s action in Syria has been widely criticized by international leaders, Trump, as president, has been free to do as he pleases with no consequences.
But Trump has been criticized for his decision to withdraw from the Paris climate accord.
“I’m very disappointed with this decision by President Trump,” former U.N. Ambassador Samantha Power told a House committee on Tuesday.
“There are so many other options and options that we have in this world, and I think this is a good one for the United Kingdom, and that’s what I want to say to them.”
Power’s remarks were met with boos from the committee.
“What the heck is that about?”
Rep. Mike Pompeo, a Republican who chairs the House Committee on Foreign Affairs, asked Power.
“That’s not what I meant by ‘taking care’.
I was referring to the fact that he took the U:N.
decision,” she responded.
Power’s comments were the latest salvo in an increasingly heated debate over the Trump presidency and international policy.
Trump has taken to Twitter to defend his decision and attack critics, including Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., who he said was the author of a recent article in The New York Times that questioned the president’s leadership.
“They have no respect for American institutions and the rule of law,” Trump said of Paul, a potential 2016 presidential contender.
“Rand Paul and his ilk are a disgrace to America.
They are dangerous and they will not be tolerated in our society.”
Paul responded by telling The Hill on Tuesday that Trump “must be very ashamed” of the tweet.
The U.K. Foreign Office said Monday that Trump had the “right to make decisions and act without fear of repercussions.”
Trump’s decision “was a deliberate decision by the president to be prepared to take on a number of challenges on a very complex world and to make sure that we were prepared for them and we could respond,” the office said.
“Our relationship with the United Nation is not an optional or a substitute for our ability to act effectively in our own interests.”
In the months since the election, Trump’s administration has faced criticism for its lack of preparation for a potential new administration.
On Monday, the president tweeted that he was “not making any decisions on a permanent basis.”
He then followed up that day by saying that he planned to announce his new cabinet soon.
The White House did not respond to a request for comment on Trump’s Twitter comments.
The country is also grappling with the aftermath of the Paris attacks, which left more than 130 people dead.
The United States and France remain the only countries to have declared a state of emergency in response to the attacks.
“People are very worried that we may be in another terrorist attack,” Malbells father, Michael Malpass of Harvard, told The Hill.
“This is a very serious situation, and we need to have some answers.”