“A 1949 Moment”
Ambassador Victoria Nuland, Under Secretary for Political Affairs at the U.S. Department of State, spoke with John B. Emerson, Chairman of the American Council on Germany, and Sigmar Gabriel, Chairman of Atlantik-Brücke, about President Biden’s recent trip to Europe, the common challenges ahead and the priorities for U.S. foreign policy.
Under Secretary Nuland highlighted some key points of President Biden’s trip to Europe, the G7, NATO and EU-US summits as well as Biden’s meeting with Putin:
- The goal of the trip was to create an architecture of the future; it was “a 1949 moment”.
- Democratic countries need to demonstrate unity in the face of challenge from autocracies like Russia and China.
- Democracy needs to show it will deliver for its own people as well as for people around the world.
These ideas, Nuland argued, became manifest in the outcomes of the various summits:
- The G7-pledge to donate a billion vaccines to countries in need with no political strings attached
- The Build Back Better World initiative of the G7 countries, in which they provide medium and lower income countries with an infrastructure fund as an alternative to China’s Belt and Road initiative and other autocratic measures
- The G7’s decision on a corporate minimum tax of 15% to emphasize fairness
- The G7-climate-pledge to transition away from coal
- The decision to make NATO stronger and more resilient, and to focus more strongly on China and cyber security
- The launch of the EU-US Technology Council to address challenges in tech and to demonstrate unity vis-à-vis autocracies
All of these initiatives provided the backdrop for President Biden’s meeting with President Putin. The United States offered Russia cooperation on a number of issues, including strategic stability, the fight agains ransomware attacks and Syria.
The Fireside Chat with Ambassador Nuland kicked off our German-American Conference in cooperation with the American Council on Germany.