On a political roller coaster with Donald Trump

Donald Trump has been leading the US for almost a year now. Commentators in Europe have also been closely following every step the political novice takes. Things could have been worse, some say. Others stress that much damage has already been done.

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Die Presse (AT) /

Spared from disaster so far

The disasters many predicted would occur under Trump haven't materialised so far, Die Presse comments:

“The real estate tycoon really is behaving like a bull in a china shop in the White House. Yet he still hasn't been able to implement the bulk of his crude campaign promises. The world was spared a great deal in 2017. ... And notwithstanding all of the things that were the source of outrage or at least disapproval, the recent tax reform will prompt businesses to invest more at home and consequently create more jobs. By boxing through such a major tax reform in just a year the eccentric Mr Trump has pulled off a feat that will be hard to equal.”

NRC Handelsblad (NL) /

Partnership has become alliance of convenience

For NRC Handelsblad 2017 is the year in which US President Trump damaged the Atlantic alliance:

“What started with agitation over Nato became a trend in 2017: time and again Europe and the US fell out with each other. The rift grew with each new move on Trump's part, and there's still no end in sight. ... After defence, the climate and the Middle East, trade could be the next battleground. ... The lessons of 2017 will include the fact that Trump has no respect whatsoever for agreements, even those that have been in place for 70 years. That doesn't mean cooperation is impossible: common ground includes the fight on terror and China's unfair trade policies. But Trump has replaced the historic transatlantic alliance with a marriage of convenience and opportunistic coalitions.”

Jornal de Negócios (PT) /

Unprecedented unpredictability

2017 was clearly Donald Trump's year, but in a negative sense, comments Jornal de Negócios:

“By destroying all prospects of a strengthening of the multilateral control mechanisms in particular in the areas of trade and the environment, the US has created an unprecedented challenge for the work of the United Nations. As if Washington's chauvinistic war rhetoric vis-à-vis North Korea and the strange, almost schizophrenic relationship with China weren't enough, the US has ignited the conflict in the Middle East. ... It's as if the US wanted to reverse what had seemed to be its motto up to now: to be respected, not feared. Washington has added an unprecedented factor of uncertainty and unpredictability to the global projection of its own power.”