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Wednesday, September 28, 2022

Macron assumes his global leadership role

In his second term, Macron is emerging as an increasingly important global leader, despite his repeated failure to persuade Russian President Vladimir Putin to invade Ukraine for no reason. Macron’s new status is due not only to the EU’s importance, especially on economic issues, but also to France’s unique role for itself: as a great power aligned with the United States but philosophically independent from the United States.

This positioning has caused headaches for US presidents before, most notably when former French President Jacques Chirac recently attacked the Iraq war. But Macron has been a key ally of Joe Biden. He’s a staunch supporter of the West and democracy; he’s committed to getting Europe’s NATO powers to back Ukraine; but he’s also established a corridor with Moscow.

in an extensive interview CNN’s Jake Tapper of the Week, Macron sought to explain the psychological forces influencing Putin’s actions and defended his decision to continue dialogue with the Russian leader. He has expressed deep concern for global democracy – although he said he won’t preach to his friends – and is clearly anxious about the attack on U.S. elections. When asked about the new British Prime Minister Liz Truss’ refusal to say whether he was a friend or foe, he opted for a high profile. He dismissed a plot by the FBI to obtain intelligence information related to the French president from former President Donald Trump’s Mar-a-Lago estate.

Macron’s answer was detailed and nuanced. His ability to communicate fluently in English in the United States sets him apart from his predecessors and is a big factor in his desire for a global leadership role. In many ways, he is similar to former US President Barack Obama, who modeled his own first campaign in his 2008 White House bid. Like the 44th president, Macron has the ability to diagnose political issues or global trends.

Macron, like Obama, has also been accused of apathy, and both have struggled to wield domestic political power against their calls for change. But to paraphrase one of those urban legends of dubious origin often attributed to Henry Kissinger, there is no doubt that when the President of the United States wants to call Europe, the international dialing code he now uses is +33.

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